New Age Islam
Tue Aug 11 2020, 02:28 PM

Islamic World News ( 28 Feb 2015, NewAgeIslam.Com)

‘Pakistan Third In Human Slavery Ranking In a List of 167 Countries where human slavery is most severe’

 

 

 

Anti-Houthi protesters march during a demonstration to show support to Yemen's President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi in the central city of Ibb February 28, 2015. (Reuters)

 

 

 

  

Pakistan

‘Pakistan Third In Human Slavery Ranking In a List of 167 Countries where human slavery is most severe’

Lakhvi, Mumbai Attacks Mastermind Living Comfortable 'Detention' Life in Jail: BBC Report

KP Begins Developing Ethics Textbooks for Non-Muslim Students

Lal Masjid Cleric Booked For Violating Amplifier Act

Two Afghan cops killed in Balochistan

Senior ISI official shown the door for harassing a woman

50 militancy cases identified for speedy trial in Karachi

Countering terrorism in KP still a big challenge

 ‘Pakistan’s domestic dilemmas are linked to international

 

Arab World

Iraq: Army Kills over 60 ISIL Terrorists in Samarra

ISIS Savages Murder another 'Gay' Man in Syria, Mob Swarm to Pelt the Corpse with Rocks

Syrian Army Liberates 16 Villages from ISIL in Hasaka

Bahrain charges 17 bombing suspects

Egypt Supreme court rules parliamentary constituencies’ law unconstitutional

Islamic Studies Teachers ‘Must Stick To Curriculum’, Must Not Interfere In Personal Life

New KSA campaign to expel illegal expats

Looted Iraqi museum reopens in Baghdad after 12 years

Egypt courts list Hamas as terrorist group

 

North America

From Iraq to New York, A Busy Week for Islamic State Group

Another Hindu Temple Vandalised In US

Is Obama a Muslim? Most Republicans say yes

Report: More US Colleges Boycott Israeli Goods

Obama to veto Congress bill on Iran nuke deal

 

India

Muslims Must Become Hindus If They Want Respect: VHP Leader

Hurriyat, Pak Allowed Conducive Atmosphere for Polls, J&K CM Says

Clash of Civilizations at Mufti Swearing In: "Bharat Mata Kid Jai" Vs "I Swear In The Name Of Allah"

Christian NGOs Condemn VHP's Comments on Mother Teresa

Nai Manzil to bridge lack of skills in minorities

 

Mideast

Middle East Funds Increasingly Bullish On Saudi Arabia Equities

Yemen’s Hadi Declares Sanaa an ‘Occupied Capital’

Israel’s Netanyahu heads to Washington for Congress speech

Palestinian Protesters Rap Egypt's Anti-Hamas Court Ruling

Iranian Legislature Condemns ISIL's Inhuman Acts in Syria, Iraq

Iran Voices Concern over ISIL's Threats to Iraq's Historical Heritage

 

Europe

Lakhvi Living Comfortable 'Detention' Life in Jail: BBC Report

Assad or No Assad, West Asks, As IS Rises and Conflict Rages

‘Jihadi John’ Had Anger Management Issues: Ex-Teacher

UN: Iraq violence kills at least 1,100 in February

UK govt figures wrangle over ‘hate preachers’ law

 

Africa

Suicide Bomber Kills Three in Northeast Nigeria: Witnesses

Cameroon Protesters Call for Death of Boko Haram Leader

Mali government signs peace deal, Tuareg rebels delay

 

Southeast Asia

Malaysia 8th Worst in Government Curbs on Religion, Says Study

Jokowi Says Indonesia Stance ‘Clear’ on Australians’ Executions

Najib confident Malays can be respected in the world

 

South Asia

HRCM Vice President under Threat after Police ‘Traitor’ Claim

Journalism under threat: Afghan Photojournalist among Pul-i-Charkhi prisoners

Hanif: Khaleda, get ready for life in jail

Tribute paid to Avijit, call to fight fundamentalism

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/‘pakistan-third-in-human-slavery-ranking-in-a-list-of-167-countries-where-human-slavery-is-most-severe’/d/101764

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Pakistan

 

‘Pakistan Third In Human Slavery Ranking In a List of 167 Countries where human slavery is most severe’

March 1, 2015

MULTAN: Pakistan ranks third in a list of 167 countries where human slavery is most severe.

This was stated by Justice and Peace Commission Executive Secretary Hyacinth Peter here on Saturday during a consultation session on ‘Existing Laws to Stop Bonded Labour: Gaps and Recommendations’. He said Pakistan stood third position in the Global Slavery Index (GSI).

“Any kind of slavery is illegal and inhuman. High ratio of slavery in the country is a huge matter of concern and failure of state institutions to protect the rights of labourers. Proper implementation of minimum wages, provision of social security and access to other facilities could stop bonded labour,” he said.

Peter said according to the GSI over two million people were enslaved in Pakistan. Punjab and Sindh especially were “hotspots of bonded labour” in sectors like brick making.

“The sale and purchase of brick kiln labour has become a profitable job. Pakistan got freedom in 1947 but brick kiln labourers could not get freedom from bonded labour till today,” he added.

Also read| India, Pakistan have highest population of slaves in the world: report

He further said bonded labour was common in the brick kiln sector and majority of kilns were in Punjab. Labour laws especially Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act 1992 were not being implemented in the kiln industry and kiln owners were more powerful as compared to the state.

District Officer (Labour) Nusrat Kamal, Nadeem Parwaz, former MPA Amir Naveed Jewa, Altaf Mehmood Qurashi, former MPA Babu Nafees Ansari, Farhan Bhatti, Naeem Haroon and Sohail Javaid were among the participants who urged the government to enforce the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act 1992 as well as take all necessary steps to end the practice.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166606/pakistan-third-in-human-slavery-ranking

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Lakhvi, Mumbai Attacks Mastermind Living Comfortable 'Detention' Life in Jail: BBC Report

March 1, 2015

PESHAWAR: Waking up from a deep slumber after decades, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Textbook Board has begun developing books on Ethics as an alternative subject to Islamiat for non-Muslim schoolchildren in the province.

Currently, Islamiat is not compulsory for non-Muslim students at schools. They can opt for Ethics subject in place of Islamiat.

Ironically, the KPTB hasn’t yet developed Ethics textbooks for public and private schools in the province.

The situation has forced missionary schools in the province to teach Ethics books published by the Punjab Textbook Board or written noted authors to their non-Muslim students.

“We have students of different religions, mostly Muslims and therefore, we have arranged teachers for them to teach things about the respective religions to them,” the principal of a local missionary school told Dawn.

He said every student had the right to learn about his/her religion and culture at school.

An official of the elementary and secondary education department said non-Muslim students of government schools mostly had no choice but to study Islamiat due to unavailability of Ethics teacher.

Sources in the KPTB said the study material on Ethics for fourth-12th grades had been prepared in light of the latest curriculum and that its review would begin soon.

They said the publication of textbooks on Ethics would begin once experts completed the review of study material.

The sources said efforts would be made to introduce some Ethics books for primary classes in the next academic year beginning April.

Most non-Muslims forced to study Islamiat in schools

A schoolteacher told Dawn that a non-Muslim ninth grader enrolled in the Government High School Dabgari selected Ethics as optional subject but had to change its decision due to unavailability of a teacher for it.

“We told him that it’s impossible to arrange a separate teacher for him,” he said. A total of 15 non-Muslim students are enrolled in the Government Primary School, Asia Gate, and six in the Government Middle School, Asia Gate. These students, all Sikhs, have been studying Islamiat since their enrolment.

A teacher said several non-Muslim schoolchildren had been securing excellent marks, which were far better than their Muslim colleagues, in the annual examinations and monthly tests. He said such students secured more marks in Islamiat than Ethics.

When contacted, special assistant to the chief minister on minority affairs Sardar Soran Singh said most Sikh students had long been studying Islamiat at government schools in the province.

“Non-Muslim students avoid selecting Ethics due to the absence of textbooks and study material,” he said.

Singh said unavailability of specialist teachers for Ethics was also to blame for non-Muslims not opting for Ethics as alternate to Islamiat.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166568/kp-begins-developing-ethics-textbooks-for-non-muslim-students

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KP begins developing Ethics textbooks for non-Muslim students

March 1, 2015

PESHAWAR: Waking up from a deep slumber after decades, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Textbook Board has begun developing books on Ethics as an alternative subject to Islamiat for non-Muslim schoolchildren in the province.

Currently, Islamiat is not compulsory for non-Muslim students at schools. They can opt for Ethics subject in place of Islamiat.

Ironically, the KPTB hasn’t yet developed Ethics textbooks for public and private schools in the province.

The situation has forced missionary schools in the province to teach Ethics books published by the Punjab Textbook Board or written noted authors to their non-Muslim students.

“We have students of different religions, mostly Muslims and therefore, we have arranged teachers for them to teach things about the respective religions to them,” the principal of a local missionary school told Dawn.

He said every student had the right to learn about his/her religion and culture at school.

An official of the elementary and secondary education department said non-Muslim students of government schools mostly had no choice but to study Islamiat due to unavailability of Ethics teacher.

Sources in the KPTB said the study material on Ethics for fourth-12th grades had been prepared in light of the latest curriculum and that its review would begin soon.

They said the publication of textbooks on Ethics would begin once experts completed the review of study material.

The sources said efforts would be made to introduce some Ethics books for primary classes in the next academic year beginning April.

Most non-Muslims forced to study Islamiat in schools

A schoolteacher told Dawn that a non-Muslim ninth grader enrolled in the Government High School Dabgari selected Ethics as optional subject but had to change its decision due to unavailability of a teacher for it.

“We told him that it’s impossible to arrange a separate teacher for him,” he said. A total of 15 non-Muslim students are enrolled in the Government Primary School, Asia Gate, and six in the Government Middle School, Asia Gate. These students, all Sikhs, have been studying Islamiat since their enrolment.

A teacher said several non-Muslim schoolchildren had been securing excellent marks, which were far better than their Muslim colleagues, in the annual examinations and monthly tests. He said such students secured more marks in Islamiat than Ethics.

When contacted, special assistant to the chief minister on minority affairs Sardar Soran Singh said most Sikh students had long been studying Islamiat at government schools in the province.

“Non-Muslim students avoid selecting Ethics due to the absence of textbooks and study material,” he said.

Singh said unavailability of specialist teachers for Ethics was also to blame for non-Muslims not opting for Ethics as alternate to Islamiat.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166568/kp-begins-developing-ethics-textbooks-for-non-muslim-students

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Lal Masjid cleric booked for violating amplifier act

March 1, 2015

ISLAMABAD: Aabpara police have registered a case against the naib khateeb of Lal Masjid, Maulana Amir Siddique, for violating the amplifier act on Friday.

It may be noted that the use of loudspeaker except for Azaan and Friday sermon in Arabic is prohibited in the federal capital.

A police official requesting not to be identified said though a case had been registered against Maulana Siddique, hardly any clerk was arrested in that sort of cases.

“Though clerics are informed that they cannot use the loudspeaker, a majority of them do not follow it,” he said.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166570/lal-masjid-cleric-booked-for-violating-amplifier-act

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Two Afghan cops killed in Balochistan

March 1, 2015

QUETTA: Two Afghan Police personnel were killed in a militant attack in Chaman area of Balochistan on Sunday.

A senior administration officer in Chaman, who declined to be named, told Dawn via telephone that six militants on three motorcycles opened fire at the vehicle of Afghan Policemen in Chaman's Bypass area.

The assailants sped away on their motorcycles after the strike, the official said.

The Afghan cops, who belonged to Helmand province of Afghanistan, were en route to Quetta for medical treatment when the attack took place.

The bodies were shifted to District Headquarter Hospital Chaman for postmortem.

There was no claim of responsibility for the attack.

Chaman is a small town in the southwestern province of Balochistan which borders Afghanistan.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166679/two-afghan-cops-killed-in-balochistan

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Senior ISI official shown the door for harassing a woman

March 1, 2015

ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has finally shown the door to a senior Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) official who had been working in the civic agency on deputation since April last year.

The official was posted as the director general for administration until Feb 9, but was under investigation for ‘misconduct’ following the leak of a video where the officer was caught allegedly harassing a woman in an elevator.

The video, gleaned from security cameras at the Pak-China Friendship Centre, was reported to the authorities by the CDA security directorate.

Officer’s services were repatriated to parent department after probe into ‘misconduct’

Initially, CDA repatriated the officer to the ISI without giving a reason. A CDA letter from Feb 9 addressed to the Cabinet Division and the ISI stated that the officer, “presently posted as director general (administration), CDA, on deputation basis, is hereby repatriated to his parent department, i.e. directorate general Inter Services Intelligence, government of Pakistan, Islamabad and struck off the strength of CDA with immediate effect (sic)”.

Sources in the CDA claimed that the inquiry report was not sent to Cabinet Division at the accused officer’s behest and that the authority repatriated his services without mentioning the allegations.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166428/cda-shows-the-door-to-isi-officer

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50 militancy cases identified for speedy trial in Karachi

March 1, 2015

KARACHI: Fifty cases of bomb blasts and militant attacks by proscribed organisations have been prioritised for hearing on a day-to-day basis by the 10 antiterrorism courts in Karachi, it emerged on Saturday.

A list of the 50 cases has been handed over to police to ensure the production of prosecution witnesses in courts.

Sources in the superior judiciary told Dawn that Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, who is also the monitoring judge of the ATCs in Sindh, chaired a meeting which was informed that each ATC in the city picked up five militancy cases for hearing on a day-to-day basis as provided under the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) of 1997.

Of the over 2,600 cases pending disposal before the 19 antiterrorism courts across Sindh, nearly 200 militancy-related cases were prioritised for a day-to-day hearing.

The meeting was also attended by Justice Sajjad Ali Shah of the Sindh High Court, who is also judge in charge of the SHC for the ATCs, member of the inspection team-II Judge Abdullah Channa, judges of the ATCs in Karachi, law secretary, finance secretary, special home secretary and an additional inspector general of police.

The sources said Justice Jamali expressed his satisfaction over the performance of the ATC judges when he was informed that 173 cases were disposed of by the ATCs across the province.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166547/50-militancy-cases-identified-for-speedy-trial-in-karachi

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Countering terrorism in KP still a big challenge

March 1, 2015

Unlike past when terrorists would carry out car bomb blasts or send a suicide bomber to target a place or person, groups of suicide bombers armed with automatic weapons and hand grenades are being sent now for targeted attacks.

The terrorists seem to have changed their strategy. The attacks on the Army Public School (APS) and Imamia Masjid, Hayatabad, in Peshawar have offended the police to a great extent, but still they are unable to work out an effective anti-terror plan in the provincial metropolis.

The militants’ new and frightening strategy is that they set their vehicles on fire soon after they reach the target and carry out their activities with full determination to kill and get killed. They also try to achieve their target of maximum bloodshed within the shortest possible time before the arrival of the law enforcement agencies. Mostly young and energetic bombers are used for the purpose.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166589/countering-terrorism-in-kp-still-a-big-challenge

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‘Pakistan’s domestic dilemmas are linked to international

March 1, 2015

KARACHI: In the post cold war world, military dominance in Pakistan is more of a liability than an asset, said noted historian Ayesha Jalal while presenting salient features of her book The Struggle for Pakistan at the Mohatta Palace Museum on Friday evening.

Ms Jalal said her work attempted to tackle the contemporary narratives on Pakistan that existed at the international level, the narratives that suggested that Pakistan was a mistake, a failed state and an irrelevant state. Narratives such as these tended to flatten out Pakistan’s history, only taking present perspectives into account. Her book was an attempt to contest such narratives, she said.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166378

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Arab World

 

Iraq: Army Kills over 60 ISIL Terrorists in Samarra

March 1, 2015

The Iraqi army pressed a major offensive against the ISIL Takfiri group in the holy city of Samarra on Sunday, leaving at least 60 terrorists dead and 70 others injured, a military official said.

A senior Iraqi official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that the army troops struck a major blow at the ISIL in the area of Su Shinas, Northern Samara, and claimed the lives of dozens of terrorists.

The ISIL Takfiri terrorists currently control shrinking swathes of Syria and Iraq. They have threatened all communities, including Shiites, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians, Ezadi Kurds and others, as they continue their atrocities in Iraq.

Senior Iraqi officials have blamed Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and some Persian Gulf Arab states for the growing terrorism in their country.

The ISIL has links with Saudi intelligence and is believed to be indirectly supported by the Israeli regime.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210001067

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ISIS Savages Murder another 'Gay' Man in Syria, Mob Swarm to Pelt the Corpse with Rocks

March 1, 2015

Islamic State have released new shocking photos of a 'gay 'man being thrown off a roof and stoned to death.

Following a trial in an Islamic State court, the man was taken to the roof of the building and thrown to his death in front a large crowd below.

The horrific act was carried out in Tel Abiad in the Islamic State capital of Raqqa in Syria.

The man is described as a ‘child of Lot’ and accused of committing acts of sodomy.

Lot is referred to in the Bible and the Qur'an, where it is claimed the people of Sodom and Gomorrah carried out sinful acts and were severely punished by God.

It is not the first occasion that Islamic State have published photos of such persecution. Another man accused of committing homosexual acts was thrown off the same building last month.

A large crowd of fighters and local residents of Raqqa are shown gathering to watch the horrific punishment outside the Islamic court building in Tal Abiad.

Amongst some of the bearded fighters, a number of children can be seen in the crowd, watching the horrific act.

Dozens of men line a high wall, hoping to get a better view of the atrocity from their vantage point.

Unusually, three niqab clad women can he seen waiting for the punishment to be carried out. They stand under the bombed out remains of the court building, away from the main crowd of men and boys. 

One bearded fighter with his head covered by a red and white scarf, is holding a megaphone.

Standing at the front of the crowd, the man announces the court findings, sentencing ‘the child of Lot’ to death.

Following the announcement, the guilty man is shown being thrown off the building’s roof by two fighters. Another fighter stands on the roof, watching the man fall to his death.

The victim’s legs and hands appear to have been bound together whilst his eyes have been covered by a black blindfold.

His broken body is shown lying on the ground, broken concrete and twisted metal litters the ground around his corpse.

The final photo shows the crowd enthusiastically hurling large rocks at the dead man's body.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2972601/ISIS-savages-murder-gay-man-Syria-Man-thrown-roof-mob-swarm-pelt-corpse-rocks.html#ixzz3TBl7CIsB

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Syrian Army Liberates 16 Villages from ISIL in Hasaka

March 1, 2015

Syrian government forces targeted hideouts of the ISIL terrorists in the Northeastern province of Hasaka, and succeeded in retaking 16 villages from the Takfiri group.

The army troops pressed a major offensive against the ISIL terrorists in the Southeast of Qamishli and managed to liberate many villages, including Tal al-Dahab, Jalbarat, Jabbara, al-Tuffahiyeh, Tal Shaikh, Bazbagh, Kherbet Hussein, al-Taweel and al-Tawabej.

Yesterday, the Syrian army also flushed out ISIL terrorists from the outskirts of Hasaka province after inflicting major losses on the Takfiri group, and managed to regain control over five key villages.

The army soldiers drove out the ISIL terrorists during the operation, defusing dozens of IEDs and destroying several vehicles.

Syria has been grappling with a deadly crisis since March 2011. The violence fueled by Takfiri groups has so far claimed the lives of over 210,000 people.

The ISIL militants, with members from several western countries, control parts of Syria and Iraq, and have been carrying out horrific acts of violence such as public decapitations and crucifixions against all communities.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210000408

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Bahrain charges 17 bombing suspects

March 1, 2015

Bahrain's public prosecutor has charged 17 people with forming a militant group and carrying out bombings that wounded security personnel, the state news agency said on Saturday.

The group had set off bombs in the island kingdom's Maqaba, Al-Janabiya, Budaiya and Qarya vilages, prosecutor Ahmed Al-Hammadi was quoted as saying.

"The members had agreed to set up a terror cell to make explosives and weapons to carry out terror acts, target security forces ... and spread panic among people," he said, according to Bahrain News Agency.

Their trial will begin on March 22 and two of the defendants outside the country will be tried in absentia, he added.

The Sunni Muslim-ruled country, home to the U.S. Fifth Fleet, was swept by unrest in 2011 led by majority Shi'ites demanding political reforms.

There have been a growing number of attacks using explosives, often targeting policemen.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/124181/World/Region/Bahrain-charges--bombing-suspects.aspx

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Egypt Supreme court rules parliamentary constituencies law unconstitutional

March 1, 2015

Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court (SCC) ruled on Sunday that the country’s Elections Constituency Division Law is unconstitutional.

Shortly after the SCC issued its ruling, a spokesman of the Higher Electoral Commission (HEC) said that the parliamentary elections, previously set to start on 21 March, would be put on hold for the time being.

Omar Marwan told the press that HEC would convene for an urgent meeting to discuss the consequences of the court verdict.

"Article 3 of the Law 202 for the year 2014, which regulates the individual seats system for the house of representatives is unconstitutional," SCC Judge Anwar Al-Aasy announced in a SCC session aired on state TV.

Egypt has been without a parliament since the house of representatives elected in late 2011 was dissolved in June 2012, following a court ruling that judged the law regulating its election to be unconstitutional.

Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi holds legislative powers until an elected parliament convenes.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/124175/Egypt/Politics-/UPDATED-Egypt-Supreme-court-rules-parliamentary-co.aspx

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Islamic Studies Teachers ‘Must Stick To Curriculum’, Must Not Interfere In Personal Life

March 1, 2015

The Education Ministry has directed all teachers, both male and female, not to intervene in the personal choices of students unless those choices contradict the community’s accepted public behaviour.

The ministry noted that each school has special departments for guidance.

Other educators urged Islamic studies teachers not to interfere in the personal lives of students, such as their choices of music, whether to attend parties and other personal activities not linked or related to the school curriculum.

The ministry warned teachers against practicing the ‘carrot-and-stick’ principle.

The warnings follow complaints from parents that teachers of Islamic studies were interfering in the private lives of their children.

Abdul Aziz Al-Khudair, an educational supervisor, said the ministry had asked teachers of Islamic studies to stick to the school curriculum and not try to influence the students using external sources.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/711911

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New KSA campaign to expel illegal expats

March 1, 2015

Intensive security measures are in force to seize foreigners who violate the Kingdom’s labor laws, said a Jeddah police source.

Security checkpoints on roads are also focused on ensuring the success of Saudi Arabia’s campaign against undocumented workers.

“The highway security patrol enforces the regulations and directions of the Ministry of Interior,” said Maj. Gen. Khaled Al-Qahtani, commander of the special force for highway patrol.

“Such operations involve tracking the illegal labor force and detecting violators. This is our daily duty to boost highway security,” he said.

With the beginning of the second labor correctional campaign, he indicated that intensive measures will be implemented at security checkpoints on roads.

The commander stressed that rounding up people violating the labor and residency regulations never stopped.

Full report at:

http://www.arabnews.com/news/711916

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Looted Iraqi museum reopens in Baghdad after 12 years

March 1, 2015

Iraq's national museum has officially reopened in Baghdad, 12 years after it was closed in the aftermath of the US-led invasion, reports BBC.

The museum displays many antiquities looted during the war that have now been recovered and restored.

At the museums's opening, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi spoke of the destruction of ancient statues by ISIS in Mosul and said: "Those barbaric, criminal terrorists are trying to destroy the heritage of mankind and Iraq's civilization. We will chase them in order to make them pay for every drop of blood shed in Iraq and for the destruction of Iraq's civilization.''

About 15,000 artifacts were stolen during the Iraq war, with one-third recovered, reports BBC.The world heritage body Unesco has called an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss how best to protect Iraq's rich cultural heritage.

Encompassing about 7,000 years of history, the museum's reopening is a highly anticipated move towards reclaiming lost Iraqi artifacts.

http://www.dawn.com/news/1166675/looted-iraqi-museum-reopens-in-baghdad-after-12-years

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Egypt courts list Hamas as terrorist group

March 1, 2015

CAIRO: An Egyptian court listed the Palestinian group Hamas as a terrorist organization, judicial sources said on Saturday, part of a sustained crackdown on Islamists in the most populous Arab state. In a separate case earlier in the day, a court sentenced the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s top leader Mohamed Badie to life in prison while other members received the death penalty. Hamas is an offshoot of the Brotherhood, which the authorities have also declared a terrorist group in Egypt and have repressed systematically since the army ousted one of its leaders, Mohamed Mursi, from the presidency in 2013. While a court ruled in January that Hamas’ armed wing was a terrorist organization, Saturday’s broader ruling against the entire group has potentially greater consequences for the already strained relationship between Cairo and Hamas, which dominates the Gaza Strip on Egypt’s border. “The Egyptian court’s decision to list the Hamas movement as a terror organization is shocking and is dangerous, and it targets the Palestinian people and its factions of resistance,” Hamas said in a statement after the ruling. “It will have no influence on the Hamas movement,” Hamas said.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/foreign/01-Mar-2015/egypt-courts-list-hamas-as-terrorist-group

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North America

 

From Iraq To New York, A Busy Week For Islamic State Group

March 1, 2015

Little known to the wider world 18 months ago, the Islamic State extremist group has muscled its way into the international spotlight by carving out a self-declared caliphate in the heart of the Mideast, beheading its opponents and foreign journalists, and attracting radicalized youth as far afield as Paris, London and New York.

The militants' once seemingly unstoppable push across Syria and Iraq has slowed to a crawl in recent months as the United States, its Arab allies and even rival Iran work to roll back the group and ultimately defeat it. Despite those efforts, the extremists show little sign of crumbling under the weight of international efforts to crush it.

Here's a look at what happened this week involving the extremist group and the fight against it:

Syria and Iraq: Kidnapping Christians and smashing ancient artifacts

In northeastern Syria, the militants swept through several villages and seized more than 220 Christians from their homes over a three-day stretch beginning around dawn Monday. The onslaught also forced thousands of people to flee to nearby cities. The fate of those kidnapped, almost all of them Assyrian Christians, remains unclear. The abductions have compounded fears among religious minorities in both Syria and Iraq, where the Islamic State group's fighters have repeatedly targeted minorities, killing them, driving them from their homes, enslaving their women and destroying their places of worship.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/124162/World/Region/From-Iraq-to-New-York,-a-busy-week-for-Islamic-Sta.aspx

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Another Hindu temple vandalised in US

March 1, 2015

A Hindu temple in the US has been vandalised with several windows broken and the word “fear” painted on its wall, the second such incident in America’s Washington state this month.

Vandals used bricks to break several windows and then painted the word “fear” on the wall of the Kent Hindu Temple late on Thursday night.

Members who came to worship last night were greeted by shards of broken glass after vandals targeted the building.

Regular visitors at the temple said they were not sure if they were targeted for their faith or if neighbourhood teens were just causing trouble, local KOMO-TV reported.

Both the FBI and Kent police have been informed about the incident.

This is the second such incident in recent days in the Washington state.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/world/another-hindu-temple-vandalised-in-us/article6945867.ece

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Is Obama a Muslim? Most Republicans say yes

March 1, 2015

Alex Theodoridis, a Ph.D. holder in political science from the University of California, Berkeley, who is currently a professor at UC Merced, administered a poll last year, as part of the Cooperative Congressional Election Study, and included a simple question.

He asked a representative sample of American respondents, “Which of these do you think most likely describes what Obama believes deep down? Muslim, Christian, atheist, spiritual, or I don’t know.”

The results were surprising.

Barack Hussein Obama was seen as ‘Muslim’ by 54 per cent of Republican respondents, while 29 per cent said they did not know. Mr. Obama took his oath of office with his hand on the Bible, like most American presidents (with notable exceptions being Theodore Roosevelt and John Quincy Adams). However, his middle name seems to have confused many, including 10 per cent of Democrats and 26 per cent of independent voters, who all believe that he is Muslim.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/is-obama-a-muslim-most-republicans-say-yes/article6947281.ece?ref=tpnews

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Report: More US Colleges Boycott Israeli Goods

March 1, 2015

A decade-old movement for boycotting Israeli goods in the United States is gaining momentum at American universities, a report said.

An increasing number of American students are now joining the Boycott-Divestment-Sanction movement, refusing to sell off stock since January with student governments at some universities taking divestment votes, press tv reported.

Student governments at five of the 10 University of California campuses have voted for divestment with two more doing the same which include Santa Cruz and Davis.

In addition, divestment has gained, since December, the support of the labor union UAW2865 which represents thousands of teaching assistants and workers for the entire UC as well as the UC Students Association representing student government bodies statewide.

The movement, based on the campaign against the former Apartheid regime in South Africa, grew from a 2005 international call from Palestinian groups, and aims to increase pressure on Israel to bring to a halt its expansionist policies including building settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210001111

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Obama to veto Congress bill on Iran nuke deal

 1 March 2015

President Barack Obama would veto a bill recently introduced in the U.S. Senate allowing Congress to weigh in on any deal the United States and other negotiating countries reach with Iran on its nuclear capabilities, the White House said on Saturday.

"The president has been clear that now is not the time for Congress to pass additional legislation on Iran. If this bill is sent to the president, he will veto it," said Bernadette Meehan, a spokeswoman for the White House's National Security Council.

The United States and five other major powers are seeking to negotiate an agreement with Iran to curb its nuclear program in exchange for relief from economic sanctions.

The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act would require to submit to Congress the text of any agreement within five days of concluding a final deal with Iran. The bill would also prohibit Obama from suspending or waiving sanctions on Iran passed by Congress for 60 days after a deal.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/03/01/Obama-to-veto-Congress-bill-on-Iran-nuke-deal-.html

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India

 

Muslims Must Become Hindus If They Want Respect: VHP Leader

March 1, 2015

“Muslims are at war across the globe and the hatred against them is growing. If they want respect in India, they should become Hindus,” joint general secretary of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad Surendra Jain said.

He was addressing a Hindu Sammelan at Yamunanagar as part of the organisation’s district-wise programmes in Haryana to commemorate its golden jubilee.

Dr. Jain said: “If they want to survive, they should take the blessings of the Hindu saints.”

“The ancestors of Muslims were not Aurangzeb or Babar. They had a Hindu lineage and it is the blood of Maharana Pratap and Chattrapati Shivaji which runs in their veins.”

Ghar vapsi to go on

The VHP leader said the ghar vapsi programme would continue. “Many people are saying that ghar vapsi intensified after the BJP government came to power at the Centre, but it has been on even before that.”

Earlier this week, in a programme at Rohtak, BJP MP Yogi Adityanath claimed that the main problem facing the country is not poverty or hunger but ‘politics of appeasement.’ He had also accused the Muslims of Mewat region of southern Haryana of not being patriotic and claimed that this was a problem in most minority-dominated areas.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/muslims-must-become-hindus-if-they-want-respect-says-vhp-leader/article6946204.ece

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Hurriyat, Pak allowed conducive atmosphere for polls, J&K CM Mufti Sayeed says

TNN | Mar 1, 2015

NEW DELHI: Jammu & Kashmir chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on Sunday praised the Hurriyat, Pakistan and militants for allowing successful elections in the state, evoking strong reactions from the opposition even as ally BJP reacted with caution.

"Pakistan, Hurriyat and militants allowed conducive atmosphere for assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir," CM Sayeed said in his first press conference after assuming office as chief minister of the state.

Mufti Sayeed's statement drew very strong response from the opposition parties in the state.

Former chief minister Omar Abdullah took a dig at BJP questioning its stand on the issue.

Dear BJP, please explain role of security forces and polling staff considering your CM just said 'Pak allowed elections in J&K', Omar tweeted.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Hurriyat-Pak-allowed-conducive-atmosphere-for-polls-JK-CM-Mufti-Sayeed-says/articleshow/46418871.cms

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Clash of civilizations at Mufti swearing in: "Bharat mata ki jai" vs "I swear in the name of Allah"

Sagarika Ghose,TNN | Mar 1, 2015

JAMMU: It was a historic moment at the flower bedecked Zorowar auditorium in Jammu as parties bitterly divided by geography and ideology took oath to form a coalition government.

The swearing in of the PDP-BJP council of ministers saw a colourful difference of political cultures and styles.

While BJP MP Jugal Kishore cried Bharat Mata ki jai after the national anthem played at the start, the BJP side of the auditorium burst into a loud applause and echoed the slogan, the PDP side by contrast looked a bit non-plussed and stayed mostly silent.

There was a contrast in the political identities of the two parties as well. The sharp suited hat wearing Javed Musatafa Mir took oath in a ringing baritone declaring I swear in the name of Allah, and Maulvi Imran Ansari took oath, by saying in the name of Allah the most beneficient. Veteran politician Lal Singh, resplendent in an orange safa took the oath in Dogri while Sunil Kumar Singh of the BJP took oath in shuddh Hindustani.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Clash-of-civilizations-at-Mufti-swearing-in-Bharat-mata-ki-jai-vs-I-swear-in-the-name-of-Allah/articleshow/46420002.cms

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Christian NGOs condemn VHP's comments on Mother Teresa

March 1, 2015

MUMBAI: "Amid despair there is hope." Within minutes of issuing this statement thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi for having secured the release of Fr Prem Kumar Alexis from Talibani clutches on Monday, the Bombay Catholic Sabha released another note saying it was not so sure things were on the right track after all.

Mohan Bhagwat's statement about Mother Teresa continues to cause upset within the ranks of Christian organizations.

Sabha president Gordon D'Souza said, "Bhagwat's utterances only show that PM Modi's warnings (to ensure religious tolerance) have no effect on the RSS. Bhagwat is only escalating communal tension with a view to further polarise the country. It is unfortunate that he is hijacking the development agenda just at the start of the Budget session. The community is saddened by this and will continue to stand up to this hate campaign."

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Christian-NGOs-condemn-VHPs-comments-on-Mother-Teresa/articleshow/46410828.cms

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Nai Manzil to bridge lack of skills in minorities

March 1, 2015

The ‘Nai Manzil’ scheme announced in the budget is something that the Minority Affairs Ministry has been talking about ever since the Modi Government assumed office last year.

In reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha on July 16, 2014, the Ministry had listed ‘Nai Manzil’ as one of the steps “being taken’’ by the Government for the welfare of minorities. It was billed as a “bridge course to bridge the academic and skill development gaps of the Deeni Madrasa pass outs with their mainstream counterparts’’.

Seven-and-a-half months later, Mr. Jaitley flagged ‘Nai Manzil’ as a scheme that “will be launched this year’’ to enable minority youth who do not have a formal school-leaving certificate to obtain one and find better employment.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/nai-manzil-to-bridge-lack-of-skills-in-minorities/article6946306.ece

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Mideast

 

Middle East Funds Increasingly Bullish On Saudi Arabia Equities

1 March 2015

Middle East funds are increasingly positive toward Saudi Arabia’s stock market as oil prices appear to be stabilizing and the Kingdom is preparing to open its bourse to direct foreign investment, a Reuter’s survey of regional asset managers shows.

With its main stock index up 11.2 percent year-to-date, Saudi Arabia has outperformed all other major bourses in the Middle East, whose returns are mostly in the low single digits.

In the February version of the monthly survey, 53 percent of respondents said they expected to increase their Saudi equity allocations in the next three months, while none intended to cut them. A month earlier, 40 percent planned to boost Saudi equity allocations and the rest expected them to be stable.

Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority has said it plans to open the stock market to direct investment by foreign institutions in the first half of 2015.

Analysts expect the opening to be gradual, with institutional investors permitted to enter into stages, so a sudden rush of funds into the market looks unlikely.

But eventually the opening may help Saudi Arabia secure the status of an emerging market in global indexes, which could trigger heavy fund inflows.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/business/markets/2015/03/01/Middle-East-funds-increasingly-bullish-on-Saudi-Arabia-equities.html

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Yemen’s Hadi declares Sanaa an ‘occupied capital’

1 March 2015

Yemeni President Hadi declared the city of Sanaa an occupied capital on Sunday and accused Houthi militans of turning against political dialogue, the Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

What has happened in Sanaa is a coup, the president, who now operates in the southern city of Aden, said. Hadi arrived in Aden earlier this week after fleeting the Houthi-run capital where he was put under house arrest by the militants.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait have relocate their diplomatic missions to the southern Yemeni city.

Western-backed Hadi, who rescinded a resignation he offered last month and has declared all actions by the Houthis to be illegitimate.

Aden was the capital of an independent south Yemen before the two Yemens were united in 1990.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/03/01/Hadi-declares-Sanaa-occupied-capital-.html

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Israel’s Netanyahu heads to Washington for Congress speech

March 1, 2015

Israel’s prime minister says he is delivering a contentious speech to the U.S. Congress out of a “deep and genuine concern” for Israel’s security.

Benjamin Netanyahu said he will “do everything” to protect Israel. He spoke Sunday just before boarding a flight to Washington.

Netanyahu plans to address Congress about a potential agreement between Iran and six world powers — including the United States — which he fears could allow Tehran to get a nuclear weapon.

The speech planned for Tuesday has set off an uproar. Netanyahu angered the White House and Democrats by accepting the invitation from Republicans, who did not consult with the administration in advance.

Netanyahu meanwhile has faced a wave of criticism for the address in Israel, where he seeks re-election later this month.

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/middle-east-africa/israels-netanyahu-heads-to-washington-for-congress-speech/

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Palestinian Protesters Rap Egypt's Anti-Hamas Court Ruling

March 1, 2015

Palestinians took to the streets in the Gaza Strip to protest against an Egyptian court ruling that designated the Islamic Resistance Movement of Hamas as a "terrorist' group, media report said.

The demonstrations on Saturday night came against the backdrop of the court ruling earlier in the day. The Palestinian movement’s armed wing was also given the same label a few weeks before, press tv reported.

Demonstrators carried banners reading, “Hamas is not a terrorist group,” and, “The resistance defends the dignity and freedom of nations.”

“This ruling is an attack against the Palestinian people because Hamas is the largest Palestinian political party. This court ruling also targets all Palestinian resistance movements because Hamas has spearheaded the Palestinian resistance,” said senior Hamas official Mushir al-Masri in an address to the protesters.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210000548

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Iranian Legislature Condemns ISIL's Inhuman Acts in Syria, Iraq

March 1, 2015

Members of the Iranian parliament in a statement issued on Sunday condemned the Takfiri terrorists' crimes against the Assyrian community in Syria and destruction of the Mosul Meuseum in Iraq.

"Some 215 MPs in this message have condemned the inhuman acts of the ISIL against the Assyrians in Syria and destruction of the Mosul Museum in Iraq," MP Zarqam Sadeqi said, addressing an open session of the parliament today.

"They have beheaded 25 Assyrians in Syria and destroyed the artistic works of the civilizations of Ilam, Babylon and Iran in Iraq," part of the statement said, warning against the repercussions of ISIL terrorism in the region.

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210001031

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Iran Voices Concern over ISIL's Threats to Iraq's Historical Heritage

March 1, 2015

Head of Iran Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHTO) Massoud Soltanifar condemned destruction of Iraq's cultural heritage by the ISIL terrorists, and said Tehran is ready to keep Iraq's artifacts till calm is restored in the Muslim neighboring country.

Soltanifar said that the terrorist group has been committing regretful acts in destroying cultural and historical sites in North of Iraq in the past few days.

He said that the ICHTO had already communicated with the UNESCO chief urging her to take necessary measures to safeguard cultural and historical heritage.

Also in a phone conversation with the Iraqi minister of tourism, he expressed his regret over the brutalities of the ISIL.

Soltanifar further added that Iran was ready to temporarily host Iran's threatened cultural items.

Since July 2014, Iraq has been the scene of brutalities of the ISIL terrorists, who at the first stage of their massive attacks occupied two main cities of Mosul and Tikrit in Nineveh and Salahuddin provinces respectively. 

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931210001082

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Europe

 

Assad or no Assad, West asks, as IS rises and conflict rages

March 1, 2015

Faced with a seemingly unending bloody conflict in Syria and the rise of the Islamic State group, is President Bashar al-Assad the lesser of the country's evils and should the West re-engage with him?

While world powers such as the United States, France and Britain refuse to have anything to do with a leader the French prime minister described as a "butcher", the question is increasingly being raised within these countries.

Staffan de Mistura, the UN envoy for Syria, echoed this feeling this month when he said Assad was "part of the solution" to end a conflict that has killed more than 210,000 people, displaced nearly half the country's population and spilled over into neighbouring nations.

And this week, a private trip to Damascus by French lawmakers who met Assad for talks drew an angry response from the French government which cut diplomatic ties with Syria in 2012 -- but was feted by media in the conflict-torn country.

"The Assad regime is trying to give the impression of unstoppable momentum towards normalisation of ties," said Shashank Joshi, senior research fellow at Britain's Royal United Services Institute defence and security think-tank.

But he said this was "exaggerated" and that while Western and Syrian intelligence agencies may have had low- to mid-level contacts, there had been no formal coordination.

Officially, the United States -- like France and Britain -- remain steadfast in their demand that the Syrian leader quit power.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/124108/World/Region/Assad-or-no-Assad,-West-asks,-as-IS-rises-and-conf.aspx

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‘Jihadi John’ had anger management issues: ex-teacher

March 1, 2015

‘Jihadi John’, a masked Islamic State militant seen in gruesome videos of beheadings of Western hostages, received anger management therapy in his first year of secondary school in the U.K. after getting into fights.

Mohammed Emwazi attended Quintin Kynaston School in Queens Park, northwest London, a decade ago.

His former teacher said Emwazi needed help controlling his emotions but he was regarded as a “success story” after the therapy, she added.

“We’d find that he’d get very angry and worked up and it would take him a long time to calm himself down, so we did a lot of work as a school to help him with his anger and to control his emotions,” the teacher was quoted as saying by the BBC.

“It seemed to work. He had a lot of respect for all of the work that had been done for him at our school,” she said.

Full report at:

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/world/jihadi-john-had-anger-management-issues-exteacher/article6945919.ece

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UN: Iraq violence kills at least 1,100 in February

March 1, 2015

The U.N. mission to Iraq says violence in the country claimed the lives of at least 1,100 Iraqis in February, including more than 600 civilians.

In a statement Sunday, the U.N. Assistance Mission in Iraq (UNAMI) said 611 civilians were among 1,103 people killed last month. The rest were members of the security forces. It said at least 2,280 people were wounded, including 1,353 civilians. Last month's death toll was at least 1,375.

It said the most violent city was the capital Baghdad, with 329 civilians killed and 875 wounded.

The U.N. numbers do not include the third of the country held by the Islamic State extremist group.

According to UNAMI, last year was the deadliest in Iraq since 2006-2007, with a total of 12,282 people killed and 23,126 wounded.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/124178/World/Region/UN-Iraq-violence-kills-at-least-,-in-February.aspx

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UK govt figures wrangle over ‘hate preachers’ law

1 March 2015

Senior figures in UK PM David Cameron’s coalition cabinet have been hotly debating the premier’s plans to block “extremist” speakers from university campuses.

However, the business secretary Vince Cable is blocking such moves, UK-based newspaper the Sunday Times reported.

The legislation passed by government put a statutory requirements on universities and other public institutions to prevent the spread of terrorism, yet sources told the daily that Cable was “very rigorously” attempting to “dilute the rules.”

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/03/01/UK-govt-figures-wrangle-over-hate-preachers-.html

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Africa

 

Suicide bomber kills three in northeast Nigeria: Witnesses

March 1, 2015

A woman suicide bomber killed three other people including an accomplice and two passers-by while trying to board a bus in northeast Nigeria, witnesses and security sources told AFP.

"The suicide mission took place at around 1130 am when two women wearing hijabs tried to board a commercial vehicle but the wary driver resisted," a highly-placed security source said.

"One of the women was wearing the bomb around her waist and it exploded after the bus departed, killing the other woman and two other people," the source added.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/124166/World/International/Suicide-bomber-kills-three-in-northeast-Nigeria-Wi.aspx

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Cameroon protesters call for death of Boko Haram leader

March 1, 2015

Several thousand people took to the streets of Cameroon’s capital on Saturday to denounce Boko Haram’s bloody insurgency and call for the killing of the group’s leader Abubakar Shekau.

“This march symbolizes Cameroon’s unity against Boko Haram,” the country’s Labour Minister Gregoire Owona told marchers in Yaounde, before shouting “Shekau!”

In response, the crowd that organisers said numbered 10,000-15,000, chanted: “You are dead, you are a coward.”

Over the past seven months Cameroonian soldiers have been battling the Nigerian Islamists, which are now locked in a regional fight that also includes soldiers from Nigeria and Chad.

Boko Haram’s six-year insurgency, which has left 13,000 dead and forced over a million from their homes, has increasingly spilled over into neighbouring nations.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/africa/2015/02/28/Cameroon-protesters-call-for-death-of-Boko-Haram-leader-.html

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Mali government signs peace deal, Tuareg rebels delay

March 1, 2015

The Malian government signed a peace agreement with some northern armed groups on Sunday but the main Tuareg rebel alliance asked for more time to consult its grassroots.

The deal, hammered out in eight months of tough negotiations in neighbouring Algeria, provides for the transfer of a raft of powers from Bamako to the north, an area the size of Texas that the rebels refer to as "Azawad".

The Tuareg rebel alliance that includes the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad said it had asked for a "reasonable delay" for consultations before signing.

"An agreement that has not been shared with the people of the region has little chance of being implemented on the ground," an alliance representative said.

But a spokesman for the Algerian mediators who helped broker the agreement expressed optimism that the rebel alliance would sign soon.

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/124200/World/International/Mali-government-signs-peace-deal,-Tuareg-rebels-de.aspx

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Southeast Asia

 

Malaysia 8th worst in government curbs on religion, says study

March 1, 2015

Malaysia has been ranked among the top 10 countries with very high government restrictions on religion, according to the latest findings of US-based think tank Pew Research Center.

The findings, which cover 2013, put Malaysia at the eighth spot in the "very high" category among countries known for state interference or curbs on religion.

Topping the list was China, followed by Indonesia, Uzbekistan, Iran, Egypt and Afghanistan.

Malaysia was ranked just a spot lower than Saudi Arabia, while neighbouring Brunei and Singapore were placed at the 15th and 18th spots, respectively.

Malaysia increased its score on restrictions imposed by the state, climbing to 7.9 out of 10 in 2013, from 7.6 the year before.

Compared with six years ago, in June 2007, which was used as a baseline, Malaysia scored 6.4 in terms of government restrictions.

These restrictions were defined as laws, policies and actions restricting religions, as well as measures such as bans on changing one's religion and preferential treatment accorded to a particular religious group in that country.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/malaysia-7th-worst-in-government-curbs-on-religion-says-study#sthash.RElzkB19.dpuf

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Jokowi Says Indonesia Stance ‘Clear’ on Australians’ Executions

March 1, 2015

Jakarta. Indonesian President Joko Widodo has said his country’s stance is “clear” on the pending executions of two Australian drug smugglers, despite the suggestion by Australia’s prime minister that he is “carefully considering” his position.

The executions by firing squad of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, the Australian ringleaders of the so-called “Bali Nine” drug smuggling gang, are believed to be imminent.

Their appeals for presidential clemency, typically the final chance of avoiding death, were recently rejected by Joko, and a court this week dismissed a bid to challenge that decision.

The looming sentences have dramatically heightened tensions between Australia and Indonesia, fraying ties that were only just recovering from a spying row.

Australia has been working to persuade Indonesia to allow the men to live, and Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Thursday offered a glimmer of hope after a phone conversation with Joko, who he said was “carefully considering his position”.

However, Joko shot that suggestion down in an exclusive interview with local media on Friday.

Full report at:

http://thejakartaglobe.beritasatu.com/news/joko-says-indonesia-stance-clear-australians-executions/

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Najib confident Malays can be respected in the world

March 1, 2015

Prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak is confident that the Malay race will continue to move forward as a respected race in the eyes of the world.

He expressed this confidence based on the spirit demonstrated by those, especially the youths, who had joined him in the Malay Unity Gathering at Stadium Putra, Bukit Jalil, yesterday night.

"However, the Malays should not be complacent, the Malays must continue to move ahead and be self-sufficient. We must redouble efforts to train the Malays to become a knowledgeable race and strengthen their economy.

"We must champion the cause of Islam; defend the institution of monarchy and the special privileges of the Malays, uphold the 'Maqasid Syariah' by adopting the attitude of moderation; uphold noble values and protect the family institution," he said in his latest Twitter website today.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/najib-confident-malays-can-be-respected-in-the-world-bernama#sthash.cXGrt1px.dpuf

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South Asia

 

HRCM Vice President under threat after police ‘traitor’ claim

By Zaheena Rasheed | March 1st, 2015

The Human Rights Commission of the Maldives (HRCM) has condemned the Maldives Police Services’ claim its Vice President Ahmed Tholal had called police officers “traitors” on Friday.

In a live blog on the opposition’s mass Friday protest, police claimed Tholal had called officers traitors while disembarking from a speedboat returning from Dhoonidhoo Island Detention Center following a visit with former President Mohamed Nasheed.

Condemning the police’s “false accusations,” the HRCM in a statement yesterday said Tholal and his family had started receiving threatening phone calls and messages.

Meanwhile, Tholal, in a tweet described the accusation as “politically charged” and said he would resign if police are able to prove their claim.

“But if I’m proven right, who’ll resign from the police?” he asked.

Speaking to Minivan News, Tholal said the HRCM’s Secretary General (SG) Shamoon Hameed and staff who were present in the speedboat would testify no such incident had taken place and that there had been no confrontation with the police at all.

The police have asked the People’s Majlis’ Independent Institutions Oversight Committee to investigate the case.

Full report at:

http://minivannews.com/politics/hrcm-vice-president-under-threat-after-police-%E2%80%98traitor%E2%80%99-claim-93046

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Journalism under threat: Afghan Photojournalist among Pul-i-Charkhi prisoners

Mar 01 2015

A court in Kabul has sentenced a well-known Afghan photojournalist Najibullah Musafir to six months imprisonment which has raised concerns from the organizations defending rights of the journalists in Afghanistan.

Najibullah is now imprisoned in Pul-i-Charkhi prison of Kabul.

His case falls eight years back when he took pictures of the female basketball players in Kabul’s Ghazi Stadium for his news coverage. But the pictures were later used by Etisalat telecommunication company for advertisement.

Sediqullah Tawhidi, director of NAI, an organization that supports open media in Afghanistan, expressed concern over the current condition of journalists in the country.

He said “ The court has sentenced Najibullah Musafir without his presence.”

He added “Najibullah is not responsible in this case”.

Sediqullah further said “ The pictures were taken for news purposes and Najibullah should not be held responsible for anything in this regard”

Najibullah Musafir was arrested two weeks before in Kabul and was sent to Pul-i-Charkhi prison after court announced him six months imprisonment.

Family of Musafar states that they have proof that he was announced clear of charges but after seven years he is again arrested and being sent to prison.

Sediqullah Tawhidi, director of NAI, while talking to Khaama Press said that government is silence in regards to the complaints from the journalists.

http://www.khaama.com/46407-29125

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Hanif: Khaleda, get ready for life in jail

Mar 01 2015

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia should prepare herself for jail because her politics is over, Awami League Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif said yesterday.

“You [Khaleda] should prepare to be in prison, where you have to stay for the rest of your life,” he said.

Speaking at a convention of the ruling party’s Meherpur district chapter at Shaheed Shamsuzzoha Park in the town, Hanif said the BNP chief is waging a war with people.

“Khaleda is ecstatic with people burning to death in petrol bomb attacks. She should be brought to book for this. She is also attempting to turn Bangladesh into a failed state by imposing blockade for 54 consecutive days for no reason,” Hanif said.

Hanif criticised Jamaat-e-Islami saying that no religion supports cutting people’s tendons or beheading them, reports our Meherpur correspondent.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister’s Political Adviser HT Imam yesterday said if people do not eliminate BNP-Jamaat, the very existence of the country will be threatened.

As the BNP-Jamaat is run by Pakistan, they want to return to Pakistan, he said.

Imam was addressing a programme at the engineers’ institution in Chittagong yesterday afternoon, reports Tarek Mahmud from the port city.

“The government has no way to get back to the caretaker government system as the constitution closed that door permanently,” he noted.

“This is a final battle and time for BNP is over. Either we or BNP will survive,” he said.

http://www.dhakatribune.com/politics/2015/mar/01/hanif-khaleda-get-ready-life-jail#sthash.SO2C4iu2.dpuf

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Tribute paid to Avijit, call to fight fundamentalism

Mar 01 2015

People from all walks of life have paid rich tribute to slain writer-blogger Avijit Roy on Oporajeyo Bangla premises at Dhaka University.

The body of Avijit was kept there from 10:40am to 11:45pm on Sunday for paying last respects.

Later, his body was taken to the place where he was murdered. Flowers were placed on the place.

The attack on Avijit and Bonna is an attack on our consciousness, said Ramendu Mazumder while paying tribute to the slain writer-blogger Avijit.

Syed Hasan Imam said the people who stand against communism and for the liberation values, are being killed one after another.

This is barbarism, said the veteran theatre personality.

Shahriar Kabir, president of Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee, said previously the fundamentalists attacked Humayun Azad and continued with the attacks. If the fundamentalists are not stopped, they would ultimately target the prime minister.

If these crimes are not tried, it will annihilate everyone who has a commitment to liberation struggle, Shahriar Kabir added.

Full report at:

http://www.dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/2015/mar/01/rich-tribute-avijit#sthash.j0OB9AKS.dpuf

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URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/‘pakistan-third-in-human-slavery-ranking-in-a-list-of-167-countries-where-human-slavery-is-most-severe’/d/101764

 

 

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