New Age Islam
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Islamic World News ( 8 Feb 2015, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Pieces of Debris from Holy Mosques Sold On Black Market







Pakistan Ulema Council central chairman Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi speaking at the Ulema convention on Sunday.—PPI

 

 

 Arab World

Pieces of Debris from Holy Mosques Sold On Black Market

‘Pride and Jihad’ IS Issues Latest Recruitment Call to Children

Suicide Bomber Kills At Least 14 in North Baghdad

Arab Leaders Bemoan Lack of Strategy, Weapons against Militants

Saudi Arabia denies funding 'extremist mindset' in Pakistan

Iraqis celebrate end of decade-long curfew in Baghdad

Officials: 25 people killed in Egyptian soccer match riot

Iraqi Army Captures 21 ISIL Terrorists in Anbar

Expats in Saudi Arabia urged to register fingerprints

New militia battles Islamist rebels near Damascus

Jordan: ISIS lost 20% of its military capabilities

Egyptian president calls Gulf leaders following alleged leaks

 

Africa

Moroccan Islamic Scholar Calls for Contemporary Reading of Religious Texts

Boko Haram Leader Vows to Defeat Regional Force in New Video

Boko Haram launches attack against prison in Niger

Scholar: Moroccans Who Fight Against ISIS Are Fighting for UAE, USA and Israel

Annan: US-Led Invasion of Iraq Helped Create ISIL

 

South Asia

9 Militants Killed, 26 IEDs Confiscated in Counter-Terror Operations

2 Killed As Unknown Gunmen Attacked Mosque in Nangarhar

Drone kills veteran Afghan militant with suspected ISIS links

No stability if Jihadi leaders remain sidelined, Ismail Khan warns

14-party: Talks between humans and monsters not possible

China investing in six nuclear projects in Pakistan

2 AL leaders stabbed dead in Noakhali, Bogra

 

Pakistan

Ulema Convention Calls For Struggle against Terrorism, Extremism

Pro-IS Wall Chalking Appears On Walls of PU in Lahore

Bomb Explosion Kills Three in Khyber Agency

Militants blow up Girls school in Orakzai Agency

Decisive war being fought against enemies of peace: Shahbaz Sharif

Maulana Sufi cases depict confused state policies

Ministry figures: 933 killed ‘for honour’ in two years

Lack of economic opportunities breeds extremism: Kh Asif

Scholars seek acknowledgment of contribution made by madaris, ulema

 

India

Ulema and Civil Society Must Fight ISIS

India is a Hindu Rashtra: RSS Chief

Muslim Leaders Meeting with the Hon'ble Home Minister Mr. Rajnath Singh

Religious intolerance ‘matter of concern’, says former European Commission chief

 

Europe

British Muslims Protest Charlie Hebdo Mohammed Cartoons

Western Media Fuel Islamophobia: European Campaigners

Fanatics in France Fighting Alongside Islamic State Then Coming Back To Radicalise Youngsters

Jihadist who faked own death demanded ‘condoms for the war booty’ from UK family

France Former Premier Wants to Modify 1905 French Law to Integrate Muslims

UK needs to take urgent action over anti-Semitism, lawmakers say

Putin: Challenge Posed to International Community by ISIL Unprecedented

 

Southeast Asia

Non-Muslims Should Not Accept Translated Copies of Quran – MCCBCHST

Local Muslims told to spurn radicalism

Indonesians up in arms over Jokowi crony firm, Proton deal

 

Mideast

Hamas MP: Jewish Treachery and Conspiracies Led To the Holocaust

Yemen Rebels to Meet With Rivals for First Time since Takeover

Iranian leader: In confronting Islamic extremism, mullahs must be evicted from Middle East

Saudi support for Palestine unflinching, Palestinian minister says

Iran FM says nuclear talks extension not in anyone's 'interest'

Yemen falls to Iran in regional proxy war

Turkey’s PM says AKP will not succumb to ‘Jewish lobby’

Alevis march against compulsory religion classes in Istanbul

IDF destroys last remnants of Hamas tunnel near Gaza border fence

Abbas book tying Nazism to Zionism to be translated to Hebrew

 

North America

Hug a Muslim, Social Experiment to Build Mutual Trust

Islamic Centre Opens Its Doors For 'Meet Your Muslim Neighbour' Event

Take a look inside the Islamic Organization mosque

ISIS threat at an ‘entirely different level’ than al-Qaeda, says Gen. John Allen

CAIR Welcomes President Obama's Prayer Breakfast Remarks on Islam, Urges Visit to U.S. Mosque

IS threat pushes Afghanistan out of US priority list

US-led coalition squeezing Islamic militants: Kerry

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pieces-of-debris-from-holy-mosques-sold-on-black-market/d/101437

 

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Arab World

 

Pieces of Debris from Holy Mosques Sold On Black Market

9 February 2015

Pieces of debris from the two Holy Mosques as a result of ongoing expansion projects are being smuggled into black markets and sold for up to 150,000 Saudi Riyals ($39,975) to historians, collectors, and enthusiasts, Al-Eqtisadiyah reported on Sunday.

The General Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques reported that it had uploaded the data of all of mosque artefacts in its systems to preserve their historical locations despite current and future expansion and renovation plans.

The general presidency’s spokesman Ahmad al-Mansouri said the data of all of the mosques’ artefacts including the pillars were recorded. He said: “We began uploading the data since the expansion project of 2006. The general presidency opened an exhibition in 1999 called the Exhibition of the Two Holy Mosques Architecture next to the Kaaba Kiswa Factory (that manufactures the black cloth covering the Kaaba). We are now finalizing expansion plans so the new artefacts can be included.”

Sources revealed expatriates working on the expansion projects were responsible for the black market. One source said: “They sell the pieces to accomplices for cheap prices and then the buyers resell the pieces to collectors and Islamic history and art enthusiasts. They do it with such discretion that the missing pieces are unnoticed.”

A seller in the black market revealed that he gets his pieces from the mosques’ storage facilities.

He said: “Every piece has a different value. For example, a piece from the Zamzam water well that was built in 1954 by King Saud Bin Abdulaziz can reach up to SR6, 000.

“Another example is the copper piece that is believed to be the cover over Prophet Ibrahim’s footprint and is valued at SR150, 000.”

He added that his buyers are usually historians, collectors and Islamic culture, history and art enthusiasts. “These ruins date back to the Ottoman Empire and have the history of the Saudi Arabian Kingdom. To many, these ruins are historical records representing the eras the Holy Mosques went through.”

Saudi Gazette on February 9, 2015.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/perspective/features/2015/02/09/Pieces-of-debris-from-Holy-Mosques-sold-on-black-market.html

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‘Pride and Jihad’ IS Issues Latest Recruitment Call to Children

09 Feb, 2015

The Islamic State group has launched another recruitment campaign aimed at teenagers in Iraqi provinces

Local sources in the provinces of Anbar and Ninevah in western and northern Iraq confirmed that the Islamic State has launched its biggest recruitment operation since 2012, focusing on children aged as young as 13.

Ibrahim al-Hassan, the deputy head of the tribes of the Nineveh Provincial Council, told the news website al-Araby al-Jadeed that the campaign, called “Pride and Jihad” was launched on Friday and had already attracted hundreds of teenagers.

Hassan is worried that the youths will be trained according to what IS considers as the correct Islamic Sharia law before initiating them into military training camps. He added that IS had distributed clothes and gifts to children, and that none of their parents dared to object or prevent their children from going.

This latest scheme from IS will have serious consequences as thousands of children in other Iraqi cities might be tempted to join their ranks, Hassan said.

Hassan also warned that the children will be brainwashed into undertaking suicide operations or becoming part of sleeper cells in a later stage.

“The Islamic State is using all of its cards,” Hassan said. “They are telling their followers that the year 2015, in the face of their resilience to the overall attacks against the organisation, will be the beginning of the international recognition of the Caliphate in Iraq and Syria.”

Speaking to the same website, Ahmed Gazi, an  expert on Iraqi security affairs, said that the Islamic State resorting to recruiting new elements is testimony to the fact that the percentage of conscription has been “reduced by half due to the high number of human lives killed recently due to the strikes by the international coalition on IS”.

Gazi attributed the decrease of IS’s popularity to the organisation’s attacks on the leader of al-Qaeda, Ayman al-Zawahiri, in addition to fighting against Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qaeda's arm in Syria.

This isn’t the first time IS has recruited children to its own ranks. The Syrian Human Rights Committee estimated in August 2014, said that there are as many as 800 youths under the age of 18 had been trained in IS camps, with the majority assigned to guarding checkpoints and patrols or assisting older fighters in a logistical way. 

However, a report by the International Business Times quoted an activist from the IS-controlled city of Raqqa in Syria as saying that these young fighters were increasingly being pushed to the front lines.

“There are at least five known IS youth training camps across Raqqa,” the activist, who goes by the name Abu Ibrahim al-Raqqawi, said. “When camp commanders, known as ‘emirs’ are not needed in battle elsewhere in Iraq and Syria, they lead child recruits through a preliminary 45-day ‘legitimacy training’ followed by three months of intense ‘war courses’.”

IS is known to have modified several popular video games such as Grand Theft Auto in a bid to boost its popularity and as a way to recruit more people. Players target modified characters that are modelled after Westerners, the Iraqi army, and soldiers from the coalition against IS.

http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/pride-and-jihad-latest-recruitment-children-942144901#sthash.mPAEKocr.dpuf

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Suicide bomber kills at least 14 in north Baghdad

9 February 2015

A suicide bomber struck in a Shiite-majority area of north Baghdad on Monday, killing at least 14 people, security and medical officials said.

The blast in Kadhimiyah, which is home to a revered Shiite shrine, also wounded at least 43 people, the officials said.

A police colonel said the bombing took place inside a restaurant at Kadhimiyah's Aden Square, while interior ministry and medical officials said the attack targeted the crowded square.

It is the second suicide bombing to hit the capital in three days. On Saturday, an attack inside a restaurant in the Baghdad Jadida district killed at least 23 people.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the Monday attack, but suicide bombings are a tactic almost exclusively employed by Sunni extremists in Iraq, including militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria group.

ISIS spearheaded an offensive that swept through large areas north and west of Baghdad last June, and Iraqi forces are battling to regain ground with support from U.S.-led air strikes.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/02/09/Suicide-bomber-kills-at-least-12-in-north-Baghdad.html

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Arab leaders bemoan lack of strategy, weapons against militants

9 February 2015

Arab leaders bemoaned what they called a lack of strategy and weapons in the fight against jihadists like Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) at a security conference attended by Western leaders in Munich on Sunday.

ISIS fighters have brought large areas in Syria and Iraq under their control, using extreme violence against civilians, journalists and Arab and Kurdish soldiers.

U.S.-led air strikes and arms deliveries from Western countries to Kurdish fighters have helped contain ISIS expansion into Kurdish territory in northern Iraq. But on the ground, ISIS - known as Daesh in Arabic - uses heavy weapons captured from a weakened Iraqi army, leaving local fighters painfully exposed.

“I don’t see that there is a clear strategy how to deal with (ISIS),” Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki said. “How to face it, how to contain it, control it, defeat it and eliminate it.

I don’t see it... Unless the air strikes is a strategy. That’s not a strategy.”

Last month, the head of NATO said air strikes alone would not be enough to defeat ISIS and greater Western help in building up Iraqi security forces could also play a role.

Qatar also criticized current efforts against ISIS, especially in Iraq where many Sunnis have felt disenfranchised by the Shiite-dominated leadership in Baghdad.

“If we want those people (Sunnis) to fight for themselves, to clean Iraq from any terrorists, we have to not only issue a program but to implement this program tangibly,” Qatar’s Foreign Minister Khaled al-Attiyah said in Munich.

“We still need to have a strategy in Iraq from our allies. There is no strategy, I’ll be very frank on this.”

Saudi Arabia and Jordan have taken part in air strikes against ISIS. Other countries like Egypt say the international community is not helping enough in their fight against other jihadist groups such as Ansar Beyt al-Maqdis in the Sinai peninsula, bordering Israel.

“We need more weapons, the quality, the sophistication of the weapons, the technology so that we can track and be able to infiltrate these organizations,” Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry told Reuters on the sidelines of the Munich conference.

Echoing Egypt’s calls for a more comprehensive strategy, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani urged leaders in Munich to act on militants operating from his country, adding that this threat should not be treated in isolation from ISIS and other groups.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/perspective/analysis/2015/02/08/Arab-leaders-bemoan-lack-of-strategy-weapons-against-militants-.html

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Saudi Arabia denies funding 'extremist mindset' in Pakistan

9 February 2015

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia on Monday denied funding of what it called the extremist mindset through its financial support of religious seminaries in Pakistan.

"A section of the media has been propagating a false impression that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is funding the extremist mindset in Pakistan through its financial support for religious seminaries," a press statement issued by the Saudi embassy said.

"Whenever any seminary, mosque or charity organisations request the kingdom for financial assistance, the embassy refers the matter to the Government of Pakistan through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for examining suitability of the applicant," the statement added.

It went on to say that only "when the ministry of foreign affairs informs the embassy in writing that the financial assistance is in the interest of public welfare, the assistance is provided to the applicant ... The assistance has always been beyond any sectarian considerations".

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1162507/saudi-arabia-denies-funding-extremist-mindset-in-pakistan

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Iraqis celebrate end of decade-long curfew in Baghdad

February 09, 2015

As midnight on Saturday evening approached, Iraqis gathered in the streets of the capital Baghdad to celebrate the lifting of an decade-long curfew.

The streets erupted with cheers and the sound of car horns beeping triumphantly. Flags were unleashed and draped around cars and lampposts, as the city’s cafes buzzed with excited patrons who gathered to smoke shisha, drink coffee and eat late into the night. It was the first night in almost 10 years that Baghdad, once a city known for its never-ending bustle, could roar on past midnight

"Long live Iraq!", one young man shouted while hanging out the window of a passing car early on Sunday.

It was the first night in a decade that Baghdad residents could stay out as late as they wished, after Premier Haider al-Abadi ordered an end to the curfew that had run from midnight to 5:00 am. It was introduced in 2004 to try to stem the growing violence that ripped the country apart in the wake of the US-led invasion to topple former president Saddam Hussein.

"Before, we felt like we were in prison," said cafe-owner Faez Adbulillah Ahmed. "We were restricted. We would have to leave by 11:30 pm ... to reach the house by 12," he said. Now, "we will be free to stay."

Full report at:

http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/iraqis-celebrate-end-8-year-curfew-baghdad-630012567#sthash.vWOoMCCb.dpuf

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Officials: 25 people killed in Egyptian soccer match riot

9 February 2015

A riot broke out Sunday night outside of a major soccer game in Egypt, with a stampede and fighting between police and fans killing at least 25 people, authorities said.

The riot, only three years after similar violence killed 74 people, began ahead of a match between Egyptian Premier League clubs Zamalek and ENPPI at Air Defense Stadium east of Cairo. Such attacks in the past have sparked days of protests pitting the country’s hard-core fans against police officers in a nation already on edge after years of revolt and turmoil.

Two security officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said at least 25 people were killed.

Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/middle-east-africa/officials-25-people-killed-in-egyptian-soccer-match-riot/99/

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Iraqi Army Captures 21 ISIL Terrorists in Anbar

9 February 2015

At least 21 ISIL terrorists were captured during a low-key operation carried by the Iraqi military in the Western province of Anbar, a military source said.

A senior military official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that the army troops, backed by Albu Nimir tribal forces, drove out the ISIL terrorists from a road on the outskirts of the province which mainly links Haditha and Baiji areas.

The source added the Iraqi soldiers succeeded in capturing 21 terrorists after inflicting hefty losses on the Takfiri group during the operation.

The ISIL Takfiri terrorists currently control a shrinking part 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=13931120000818

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Expats in Saudi Arabia urged to register fingerprints

9 February 2015

The Directorate General for Passports (Jawazat) has asked those expatriates who failed to register their fingerprints to visit any Jawazat office mentioned in the website www.gdp.gov.sa.

The Jawazat stopped providing services to those expatriates who failed to register their fingerprints before the Jan. 21, 2015, deadline, Spokesman of the Directorate General for Passports Lt. Col. Ahmed Fahd Al-Luhaidan said in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency on Sunday.

The Jawazat made fingerprinting mandatory for all its services for expatriates from Jan. 21 (Rabi Al-Thani 1).

This is applicable to all expatriate men and women above the age of 15. All expatriates must have mandatory biometric data for services such as exit and reentry visa, profession change, transfer of passport information (naql al-ma’lumat) and renewal of iqamas (residence permits).

The Jawazat is keen to record biometric data of all expatriate men and women with its central network system.

Therefore, the directorate started making fingerprinting for all expats mandatory for all passport services in phases.

In the first phase, it was applicable for issuance of new iqama and a final exit. Earlier, it was only optional.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/02/09/Expats-in-Saudi-Arabia-urged-to-register-fingerprints.html

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New militia battles Islamist rebels near Damascus

9 February 2015

Former rebel militiamen who have switched sides and joined Syria’s regime forces are engaged in a fierce battle against Islamist insurgents near Damascus, sources said on Sunday.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, pro-regime Jaysh al-Wafaa launched its “fiercest battle yet” on Saturday night against Jaysh al-Islam fighters near the rebel bastion of Douma, east of the capital.

“The fighting is ongoing now,” Observatory director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP on Sunday.

Jaysh al-Wafaa, whose name in Arabic roughly translates as “The Loyalists’ Army,” was formed some three months ago, more than a year into a suffocating regime siege of the Eastern Ghouta area, which includes Douma.

The militia’s task is to confront Jaysh al-Islam, the best-armed opposition group in the Damascus area, according to the Observatory and activists in Douma.

President Bashar al-Assad’s regime “is financing and arming Jaysh al-Wafaa,” Abdel Rahman said.

Full report at:

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/02/08/New-militia-battles-Islamist-rebels-near-Damascus-.html

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Jordan: ISIS lost 20% of its military capabilities

 9 February 2015

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group has lost 20 percent of its military capabilities since the start of U.S.-led coalition air strikes in September, General Mansour Al-Jbour, head of the Royal Jordanian Air Force, said in a press conference on Sunday.

Jordan has carried out nearly 20 percent of the total sorties conducted by the U.S.-led coalition against ISIS in Syria to date, Jbour said, adding that they had been careful not to hit any civilians.

The sorties have led to the “degrading” of nearly 20 percent of the hardline militants’ capabilities, he said.

“We are determined to wipe them from the face of the Earth.”

Jbour also said that the coalition’s air strikes have killed 7,000 members of the militant group.

He also said that Jordan’s jet fighters had conducted 56 raids in three days of intensified bombing targeting a stronghold of ISIS militants in northeast Syria.

“We achieved what we aimed at. We destroyed logistics centers, arms depos and targeted hideouts of their fighters,” Jbour said.

There was no word of any new strikes against the militants on Sunday.

Jordan’s King Abdullah has vowed to avenge the killing of pilot Muath al-Kassasbeh and has ordered his commanders to prepare for an increased military role in the U.S.-led coalition against ISIS.

Many Jordanians fear being dragged into a conflict that could trigger a backlash by hardline militants inside the kingdom.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/02/08/Jordan-ISIS-lost-20-of-its-military-capabilities.html

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Egyptian president calls Gulf leaders following alleged leaks

9 February 2015

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has phoned four Gulf leaders following the emergence of allegedly leaked audio recordings, in which senior officials, including him, made offensive remarks about wealthy Gulf nations.

El-Sisi made phone calls to the leaders of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Bahrain as well as the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi on Feb. 8 night, during which the Gulf leaders reassured Egypt’s leader of their continued support to his country.

The calls came a day after an audio recording was broadcast by an Istanbul-based pro-Muslim Brotherhood satellite channel purportedly featuring then Defense Minister el-Sisi, his chief-of-staff Abbas Kamel, and then army chief of staff Mahmoud Hegazi making offensive remarks about Gulf states.

Full report at:

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/egyptian-president-calls-gulf-leaders-following-alleged-leaks---.aspx?pageID=238&nID=78086&NewsCatID=352

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Africa

 

Moroccan Islamic Scholar Calls for Contemporary Reading of Religious Texts

09 Feb, 2015

Fez – Said Ahmad al-Abadi, the Secretary General of the Muhammadiyah Association of Scholars in Morocco, has stated that the biggest challenge for the Islamic world in light of increasing globalization is reading Islam’s religious heritage through the prism of contemporary circumstances to renew religious discourse.

In a presentation delivered at a seminar entitled “The Renewal of Religious Thought in the Era of Globalization,” held on Sunday at the Cairo International Book Fair, Mr. Abadi said that loyalty to the early scholars of Islam requires a new reading of religious intellectual work while taking into account the contemporary context of the present day.

He added that some of the factors and the requirements of this renewed reading of religious thought are taking into consideration increasing globalization, which is marked by the flow of intensive information, language pluralism, international humanitarian issues, growing communications technology, and the digital revolution, which contributes to the rapid formation of public opinion.

New technologies also change the concept of “belonging” from narrow concepts that are based on tribal or ethnic affiliation to “digital affiliation” through social media and other factors related to social and economic development.

Abadi said that a renewal of religious discourse in the current global context requires scientific abilities and competencies, at scholarly institutions such as Al-Azhar in Egypt and the University of Karaouiun in Fez.

Full report at:

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/02/151105/moroccan-islamic-scholar-calls-contemporary-reading-religious-texts/

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Boko Haram launches attack against prison in Niger

 9 February 2015

Islamist fighters from Nigeria's Boko Haram launched a new attack in neighbouring Niger on Monday, raiding a prison in the southeastern border town of Diffa, humanitarian sources said.

The attackers were repelled after a heavy exchange of fire, the sources said. No casualty toll was immediately available.

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/9/122581/World/International/Boko-Haram-launches-attack-against-prison-in-Niger.aspx

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Boko Haram leader vows to defeat regional force in new video

9 February 2015

Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau vowed in a new video released on Monday that the group would defeat a regional force fighting the extremists in Nigeria’s far northeast, Niger and Cameroon.

“Your alliance will not achieve anything. Amass all your weapons and face us. We welcome you,” he said in a 28-minute speech, one of three videos posted by the Islamists on YouTube.

Troops from Nigeria have been backed by soldiers from Chad, Cameroon and Niger in recent weeks because of increased concerns about Boko Haram’s threat to regional security.

In the second of the latest videos, images of the leader of the Islamic State group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, are shown along with archive footage and a voiceover recalling a battle between British colonial soldiers and fighters from the Sokoto Caliphate in northern Nigeria.

Shekau has namechecked al-Baghdadi before but appears to be positioning Boko Haram in a wider jihadi context by showing the Sokoto Caliphate, which was dismantled by the British in the early 20th century.

Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/middle-east-africa/boko-haram-leader-vows-to-defeat-regional-force-in-new-video/

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Scholar: Moroccans Who Fight Against ISIS Are Fighting for UAE, USA and Israel

09 Feb, 2015

Rabat - Moroccan Muslim scholar Ahmed Arrisouni said that the war against the so-called the Islamic State (IS) is “Haram” (forbidden).

He added that the Moroccan soldiers who fight along the US-led coalition against the terrorist group who took over swaths of land in Syria and Iraq last year are in fact fighting for the United Arab Emirates, who, in turn, are fighting for the United States and Israel.

Ahmed Arrisouni, who is also the vice president of the International Union of Muslim Scholars and a member of the Moroccan movement of Unification and Reform, wrote on his official website that the war against ‘Daesh’, the Arabic acronym for the terrorist organization formerly known as ISIS or ISIL, is Haram, saying that Islam and Muslims are the primary victims of the war led by the United States and its allies.

Full report at:

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/02/151273/scholar-moroccans-fight-isis-fighting-uae-usa-israel/

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Annan: US-Led Invasion of Iraq Helped Create ISIL

9 February 2015

Kofi Annan, the former UN secretary general, said the US-led invasion of Iraq was a mistake and helped to create the ISIL terrorist group.

“I was against this invasion and my fears have been founded. The break-up of the Iraqi forces poured hundreds if not thousands of disgruntled soldiers and police officers onto the streets,” Kofi Annan told the Munich Security Conference on Sunday, RT reported.

He added that some of these former security force members went on to join the ISIL. He also blamed regional powers for making the conflict worse.

“The aim of creating democracy without the existing institutions ushered in corrupt sectarian governments,” Annan said.

In order to halt the spread of extremism, Annan said that governments must do more to tackle problems such as unemployment.

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931120000554

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South Asia

 

9 Militants Killed, 26 IEDs Confiscated in Counter-Terror Operations

Feb 09 2015

At least nine Taliban militants were killed and four others were wounded following counter-terrorism operations conducted jointly by Afghan national security forces.

The Ministry of Interior (MoI) following a statement said the operations were conducted in the past 24 hours in Nangarhar, Kandahar, Uruzgan, Ghazni and Paktika provinces.

The statement further added Afghan National Police conducted the anti-terrorism joint operations with Afghan National Army and National Directorate of Security (NDS) to clean some of the areas from terrorists and enemies of peace and stability of Afghanistan.

At least two militants were arrested by Afghan National Security Forces, MoI said, adding that Afghan National Police discovered and confiscated light and heavy rounds ammunition during the operations.

“During the same 24 hour period, Afghan National Police discovered and defused 26 different types of IEDs placed by enemies of Afghanistan for destructive activities in Kandahar and Ghazni provinces,” the statement added.

The anti-government armed militant groups have not commented regarding the report so far.

http://www.khaama.com/9-militants-killed-26-ieds-confiscated-in-counter-terror-operations-9314

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2 killed as unknown gunmen attacked mosque in Nangarhar

 9 February 2015

Two persons were killed and another wounded after gunmen opened fire at them inside a mosque in eastern Nangarhar Province.

Ahmadzia Abdulzai, spokesman for the governor of Nanagarhar says that the incident took in Rodat District last night.

He said unknown gunmen entered a mosque in Kabul Camp area of Rodat District and sprayed bullets on civilians who were in the mosque to offer the prayers.

He added that two civilians were killed and another wounded in the attack.

He further added that security officials have initiated an investigation into the incident.

In recent years, several mosques have been targeted by terrorists in different parts of Afghanistan.

Beside Nangarhar, Paktika, Kunar and Farah are among parts of Afghanistan where mosques have been targeted by terrorists.

Dozens of civilians have lost their lives or injured in these attacks.

Last year at least 36 civilians were injured in Khogyani District of Nangarhar province due to an explosion inside a Grand Mosque where terrorists had placed explosives.

The explosion occurred as hundreds of people were gathered to offer the Friday prayers.

Also, Arsala Jamal, governor of Logar province was as assassinated in a bomb attack in a Logar mosque in 2013.

http://www.khaama.com/2-killed-as-unknown-gunmen-attacked-mosque-in-nangarhar-29040

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Drone kills veteran Afghan militant with suspected ISIS links

 9 February 2015

LASHKAR GAH, Afghanistan - A drone strike in Afghanistan killed six people on Monday including a veteran militant suspected of having defected to Islamic State from the Taliban, senior Afghan officials in Helmand province told Reuters.

A former Guantanamo Bay detainee, Mullah Abdul Rauf has been influential in Afghanistan's jihadi movement for more than a decade. The US-led coalition in Afghanistan did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The police chief and the deputy governor in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand both said Rauf was killed.

Police chief Nabi Jan Mullahkhel said Rauf was travelling in a car when the drone attacked. The other casualties included his brother-in-law and four Pakistanis, Mullahkhel said.

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Official-Drone-kills-veteran-Afghan-militant-with-suspected-ISIS-links-390463

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No stability if Jihadi leaders remain sidelined, Ismail Khan warns

Feb 09 2015

The former Jihadi leader and Minister of Water and Energy Mohammad Ismail Khan has warned that there will be no security in the country if the Jihadi leaders remain sidelined in the new government.

Speaking in a gathering of his supporters in western Herat province of Afghanistan Ismail Khan said the Jihadi leaders should be given seats in the government of national unity.

He criticized the formation of the new cabinet and claimed that almost half of the cabinet ministers are holding dual nationality.

Ismail Khan also claimed that the cabinet is comprised of communist leaders and insisted that such a cabinet would remain unable to implement peace and stability.

The Government of national unity last month introduced the cabinet ministers after almost three and half months delay where majority of the nominees are new faces and have not worked in the previous government.

However, only eight cabinet ministers and the nominee for the National Directorate of Security (NDS) were given vote of confidence.

In the meantime, Ismail Khan expressed concerns regarding the incomplete cabinet despite several months have passed from the formation of the new government.

He called on the government of national unity to provide opportunities for honest individuals who could serve the Afghan nation.

http://www.khaama.com/no-security-if-jihadi-leaders-remained-sidelined-ismail-khan-warns-9313

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14-party: Talks between humans and monsters not possible

Feb 09 2015

From a human chain that stretched from one end of the capital to the other, the Awami League-led 14-party alliance yesterday said no dialogue could take place with the BNP-led cartel unless the ongoing violence ends.

This human chain in the capital was part of a bigger countrywide human chain programme of the ruling alliance staged to protest the violence.

The programme coincided with another protest programme of the business community who came out on the streets at every district town, calling for an end to the chaos.

“Khaleda Zia is the leader of terrorists and militants. She is the mastermind who leads a movement that is not democratic; it only burns innocent people,” said Health Minister and 14-party spokesperson Mohammad Nasim while speaking at the human chain yesterday.

Nasim also said: “No national election will beheld before 2019. The next parliamentary election will be held under Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as per the constitution. There is no scope of going beyond the scope of the constitution.”

Awami League Advisory Committee member Suranjit Sengupta said: “It is not possible only for the law enforcement agencies to tackle the BNP-Jamaat terrorism. Rather, everyone should come forward in resisting the acts of sabotage.”

Full report at:

http://www.dhakatribune.com/politics/2015/feb/09/14-party-talks-between-humans-and-monsters-not-possible#sthash.oqNTyrvy.dpuf

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China investing in six nuclear projects in Pakistan

February 9, 2015

BEIJING: A Chinese official confirmed on Monday that China is involved in at least six nuclear power projects in Pakistan and is likely to export more to the country, according to an India Today report.

China has uptil now refrained from commenting on its nuclear cooperation with Pakistan. However, Wang Xiaotao, a key official of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said at a press conference on Saturday that Beijing has been involved in the construction of six reactors in the country. The official’s remarks come amid concerns voiced against increased civilian nuclear cooperation between the two countries as per the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) guidelines.

Addressing a press conference in Beijing, Wang said China “has assisted the construction of at least six nuclear reactors in Pakistan with a total installed capacity of 3.4 million kilowatts.” China was also exporting nuclear technology to Argentina, with the two countries on Wednesday signing a deal for exporting heavy-water reactors.

China only declared the first two reactors it had constructed for Pakistan, Chashma-1 and Chashma-2, at the time of joining the NSG, according to Indian and American officials. In 2009, the China National Nuclear Corporation signed agreements for two new reactors, Chashma-3 and Chashma-4. The deals became a matter of controversy and were debated at the NSG.

http://tribune.com.pk/story/835516/china-investing-in-six-nuclear-projects-in-pakistan/

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2 AL leaders stabbed dead in Noakhali, Bogra

February 9, 2015

Unknown miscreants stabbed dead two union-level leaders in Noakhali and Bogra districts early today.

The deceased were Md Babul Mia, 52, AL vice-president of Charmotua union unit in Noakhali Sadar upazila and Shamsul Hoque, 50, vice president of Elangi union AL committee in Dhunat upazila of Bogra.

Miscreants severely stabbed Babul, a member of Charmotua union Parishad, around 12:30am in Khalifatala area when he was returning home on his motorcycle, our Noakhali correspondent reports quoting Anwar Hossain, officer-in-charge (OC) of Sudharam Police Station.

In Bogra, unidentified criminals stabbed Shamsul sometime after midnight near his house at Rangamati village in Dhunat upazila, leaving him dead on the spot, our correspondent reports.

Shamsul remained missing after he went out of his house around 6:30am yesterday.

On information, police recovered the body.

http://www.thedailystar.net/2-al-leaders-stabbed-dead-in-noakhali-bogra-63948

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Pakistan

 

Ulema convention calls for struggle against terrorism, extremism

9 February 2015

KARACHI: A convention of Ulema held under the auspices of the Pakistan Ulema Council on Sunday announced that a joint struggle against terrorism and extremism would be launched by observing a peaceful protest day on Feb 13 against the Peshawar and Shikarpur tragedies and ongoing targeted killing of Ulema, professors, doctors and workers of political and religious parties in Karachi.

Leaders of over 28 political and religious parties participated in the convention presided over by PUC central chairman Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi.

In a joint communiqué the leaders observed that every section of society had been affected in the country by incidents of terrorism, extremism and sectarian violence.

Protest planned for 13th against Peshawar and Shikarpur tragedies

Describing the National Action Plan as a right step, they called for making a joint struggle against the menace of terrorism and staying beyond all expediencies.

According to the communiqué, the Ulema asked the government to take effective measures to protect religious scholars, professors, doctors and activists of religious and political parties and demanded that the national reconciliation council was made more effective and those involved in the tragedies of Peshawar, Shikarpur and targeted killing in Karachi were arrested at the earliest.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1162402/ulema-convention-calls-for-struggle-against-terrorism-extremism

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Pro-IS wall chalking appears on walls of PU in Lahore

9 February 2015

LAHORE - Pro-Islamic State (IS) wall chalking, Daish written in Urdu on Monday appeared on the periphery walls of Punjab University, situated on Wahdat Road, Lahore.

Police immediately reached the site and erased all the slogans scribbled on the walls of university and other adjoining walls. No FIR has yet been registered against the incident, whereas the police expressed ignorance from any such the happening.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/09-Feb-2015/pro-is-wall-chalking-appears-on-walls-of-pu-in-lahore

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Bomb explosion kills three in Khyber Agency

9 February 2015

KHYBER AGENCY: In Khyber Agency, three volunteers of local peace committee were killed and five injured in a bomb blast at Naray Baba area of Tirah valley on Sunday. According to security sources, centre of peace committee has been destroyed in the blast.

A blast, near the camp of Aman Lshkar in Tirah Valley claimed lives of at least three volunteers while five others sustained injuries on Sunday. According to details, an explosion was heard near the camp of Aman Lashkar in Tirah Valley killing three workers whereas five others got severely injured. Moreover, the injured were shifted to the nearby hospital. The armed forces have been carrying out a counterinsurgency campaign, operation Zarb-e-Azb, in the tribal areas to clear out terrorist havens and restore government writ.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/09-Feb-2015/bomb-explosion-kills-three-in-khyber-agency

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Militants blow up Girls school in Orakzai Agency

9 February 2015

HANGU: Militants blew up the Girls Middle School in Hangu Orakzai Agency demolishing three classrooms on Sunday, officials said.

According to political administrators, militants blew up the school using explosives in the area of Lower Orakzai Agency Bezoot however; no loss of life was reported. It may be pertinent to mention here that Orakzai Agency is considered a stronghold of the terrorists whereas earlier, dozens of schools have been blown up in various areas of Orakzai Agency. Taliban have blown up several girls’ schools in the past. In January 2014 a suicide bomber had blown himself up outside a government school in Hangu, killing a teenage student and injuring two others. The bombing of the boys’ school took place in the Ibrahimzai area of

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/09-Feb-2015/militants-blow-up-school-in-orakzai-agency

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Decisive war being fought against enemies of peace: Shahbaz Sharif

9 February 2015

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that terrorism, extremism and sectarianism are a big hurdle in national development and promotion of economic and trade activities in the country.

He said that time has come to root out terrorism and extremism for survival and stability of the country and securing the future of the coming generations. He said that political and military leadership as well as whole nation has resolved to root out terrorists and a decisive war is being fought against the enemies of peace and humanity.

He said that brutal elements which shed the blood of innocent Pakistanis in mosques, worship places, educational institutions, markets and different institutions will be held accountable for their heinous crimes against humanity.

He was talking to a delegation of office-bearers of Pakistan Muslim League-N. The Chief Minister said that Pakistan is passing through the most difficult phase of its history and terrorism and extremism have shaken the foundations of the country.

He said that thousands of Pakistanis including officers and Jawans of Pak Army, police and security institutions besides common citizens have laid down their lives in the war against terrorism.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/punjab/09-Feb-2015/decisive-war-being-fought-against-enemies-of-peace-cm

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Maulana Sufi cases depict confused state policies

9 February 2015

The last two decades saw the repeated rise and fall of Maulana Sufi Mohammad, the founder and chief of Tehreek-i-Nifaz-i-Shariat-i-Mohammadi (TNSM). Imprisoned these days at the Peshawar central prison, he has spent almost 12 years behind bars.

The different phase of Maulana Sufi’s life since 1994 is a classic example of a confused State, not sure what sort of policy should be adopted towards him. From time-to-time the government in power continued to change its policy regarding him. At times he was treated as a diehard militant while on other occasions he was considered an important figure without whom maintenance of peace in Malakand region was impossible.

Maulana Sufi, known for his anti-democracy extremist views, either remained imprisoned or continued to receive special treatment from successive governments. He has so far been acquitted in around 10 terrorism-related cases, most of them registered 20 years ago, and is currently facing trial in three cases. In one of the cases Maulana Sufi is charged along with several other TNSM members with sedition and hatching conspiracy against the state. The case pertained to a public meeting organised by TNSM at Grassy Ground, Swat, in April 2009 when the movement had entered into a fragile peace deal with then provincial coalition government of Awami National Party and Pakistan Peoples Party.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1162454/view-from-the-courtroom-maulana-sufi-cases-depict-confused-state-policies

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Ministry figures: 933 killed ‘for honour’ in two years

February 9, 2015

ISLAMABAD: Some 933 people were killed across the country in the name of honour during the past two years while 83 non-Muslims were also reported to be killed during the period. The majority of these cases were reported in Sindh.

These statistics were provided to the National Assembly on Friday by Federal Ministry of Law, in response to a query raised by an MNA, Saman Sultan Jaffri.

According to the report, Sindh proved to be the worst in terms of safety of minorities as 46 cases of non-Muslims’ killings were reported in the province, ruled by Pakistan Peoples Party.

As per the law ministry’s Human Rights Regional Offices – functioning at all four provincial headquarters – 17 non-Muslims were killed in Punjab, 9 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) and 11 in Balochistan, during this period.

The report said a total of 456 and 477 cases of honour killing were reported in Pakistan in 2013 and 2014, respectively. Once again, the greatest number of such cases (602) was reported from Sindh.

Full report at:

http://tribune.com.pk/story/835343/ministry-figures-933-killed-for-honour-in-two-years/

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Lack of economic opportunities breeds extremism: Kh Asif

9 February 2015

MUNICH: Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif has said a lack of economic opportunities breeds extremism and provides manpower to perpetrators of terrorist acts. He was addressing a seminar “Prosperous Pakistan - Strategies 2030” organised by the German Economic Forum on the sidelines of 51st Munich Security Conference in Munich. The minister said for this reason, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is focusing much attention to improve the country’s economy and create maximum job opportunities. He said despite security challenges, the government has made remarkable progress on economic front, which has also been acknowledged by international organisations like the IMF and the World Bank. Khawaja Asif invited the German investors to invest in Pakistan, which is the sixth largest country with fourth largest labour force in the world. He said Pakistan should not be seen through the prism of Afghan crisis and the propaganda being unleashed by enemies who do not want to see a developed and prosperous Pakistan. Earlier, the president of the German Economic Forum in his presentation said the forum is going to establish an economic zone in Pakistan exclusively dedicated to German manufactures and business houses.

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/09-Feb-2015/lack-of-economic-opportunities-breeds-extremism-kh-asif

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Scholars seek acknowledgment of contribution made by madaris, ulema

9 February 2015

KARACHI: Muslim scholars representing varied schools of thought, here on Sunday, urged the society in general to acknowledge contribution made by madaris in meeting educational as well as other crucial needs of a significant proportion of children across the country.

Addressing the Payam- e- Amn Convention organised by Pakistan Ulema Council - Sindh chapter, they said many of these children may be from

marginalised sections, but generally comprise kids from cross sections. It would be wrong to assume that they have no role in the development of the society as many of them have achieved unusual distinctions in realms of modern day education, they said urging government as well as society in general to contribute towards the cause of updated education and skills for students attending these formal school. The ulema, joined by activists from different religions and political parties said concerned quarters needed to support the cause and help madaris in promoting the principles of Islam that are mainly focussed on equality and equity, closely linked to the concept of justice, crucial for progress and prosperity.

Full report at:

http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/09-Feb-2015/scholars-seek-acknowledgment-of-contribution-made-by-madaris-ulema

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India

 

Ulema and Civil Society Must Fight ISIS

Mir Ayoob Ali Khan

09 Feb, 2015

Two developments within a span of less than two weeks have brought back the spotlight on the activities of the ISIS and its ripple effect across the world, especially in Hyderabad.

Anyone would take Salman Mohiuddin, an upwardly mobile young man, to be a regular youth before he was arrested by the Telangana police. He showed no signs of what was going on in his mind except for his religious beliefs. A resident of Bazaarghat, 32-year-old Mohiuddin completed his education in Hyderabad and Vikarabad.

It was only when he was arrested at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport en route Syria via Dubai that the police learnt that he was completely radicalized. Interrogators believe that it would be difficult for him to return to his old ways even if he is released from custody.

There are no inputs, as yet, on what attracted him to the ISIS ideology of blood and gore in the name of Islam. The information is also lacking on Nicole, his Amercian girlfriend, who also goes by her Islamic name Ayesha. It is not known whether she was a "honey trap" for people with extremist and militant ideas like that of Mohiuddin or someone who wanted to work for the ISIS.

Full report at:

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/City/Hyderabad/Ulema-civil-society-must-fight-ISIS/articleshow/46160306.cms

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India is a Hindu Rashtra: RSS Chief

MOHAMMAD ALI

Feb 9, 2015

Hindutva is a cultural and civilisational ideology and everybody living in India should consider himself a Hindu, said RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at a function here on Sunday.

Addressing RSS workers, Mr. Bhagwat said the country could only be unified though Hindutva. He said that Rashtriya Swaysewak Sangh had always worked for the interests of India.

He emphasised on the need to bring about “uniformity” in the country and the role of Hindutva in achieving that purpose. “Ek bhasha, ek devta, ek sampraday banana hoga ( We need to ensure one language, one God and one religion),” he said elaborating on his larger point that “for unity we need uniformity”. Calling upon every Hindu of the country to strengthen Hindutva, he said there was no doubt that India was a Hindu Rashtra.

Without referring to the BJP government at the Centre, Mr. Bhagwat considered the present times as “positive” for Hindutva and the RSS. He didn’t comment on the prediction of the exit polls about the “bad” performance of the BJP in the Delhi elections.

http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/india-is-a-hindu-rashtra-bhagwat/article6872230.ece

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Muslim Leaders Meeting with the Hon'ble Home Minister Mr. Rajnath Singh

09 Feb, 2015

Meeting of Muslim Leaders with the Hon’ble Home Minister of India

With eight months in office of the BJP Government, its functioning has been assuring for the Muslim community. The community is positive and hopeful from the Union Government. The issues of the community and the compounded feeling from security concerns to branding, discrimination and marginalization in political, social and economic spheres however remain to be addressed. Therefore, there is need for dialogue process to be started with the influential groups of the community for better trust to build between the Government and the Muslim community.

In this context, a meeting of important Muslim intellectuals and social leaders took place with the Hon’ble Home Minister, Mr. Rajnath Singh yesterday at his residence. This was the first high level interaction with Muslim community since Modi Government assumed office. The meeting was coordinated by BJP National Executive Member Dr. MJ Khan. Following persons participated in an hour long interaction and free and fair discussions.

Full report at:

http://vmkhaleelurrahman.blogspot.in/2015/02/muslim-leaders-meeting-with-honble-home.html

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Religious intolerance ‘matter of concern’, says former European Commission chief

Feb 9, 2015

In the wake of attacks on churches in the country, former European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso on Saturday said that religious intolerance is a “matter of concern” and it is the duty of a national leader to defend and protect the life of every individual and “not specific groups”.

Speaking to The Indian Express, Barroso, who was the EC president from 2004 to 2014, said that intolerance in any part of the world is a matter of concern. “We should explain to people, I think some pedagogical efforts are necessary from leaders. That instead of exciting or motivating one against the other, tolerance is key. As I said, one country may have predominantly one religion among its population. What matters is every person, not groups of persons, but an individual — a man, woman or child… The goal, the duty of the leader, a national leader, is to defend and protect the life of every individual, and not specific groups. We should preach tolerance and be strong in condemning intolerance wherever they may happen,” he said.

Full report at:

http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/religious-intolerance-matter-of-concern-says-former-european-commission-chief/

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Europe

 

British Muslims protest Charlie Hebdo Mohammed cartoons

9 February 2015

Thousands of British Muslims protested against cartoons of Mohammed in French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, in a demonstration near the office of Prime Minister David Cameron on Sunday.

The crowd marched to Downing Street holding signs reading “Charlie and the abuse factory,” “We love Prophet Muhammad more than our lives”, and “To insult is not freedom.”

Speakers addressed the protest and held communal prayers, before representatives delivered a petition signed by over 100,000 British Muslims to Cameron’s office.

The petition describes cartoons of Mohammed as “an affront to the norms of civilised society”.

After a deadly militant attack on Charlie Hebdo’s offices in Paris in January, Londoners had queued to buy the following memorial issue which featured a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed on its front cover.

However most British media did not re-publish the cartoons, which are offensive to Muslims as depictions of the founder of Islam are forbidden.

“The peace-loving majority of people must become vociferous in promoting global civility and responsible debate,” said Shaykh Tauqir Ishaq, a spokesman for the Muslim Action Forum that organized the protest.

“At this time of heightened tension and emotion, it is crucial that both sides show restraint to prevent further incidents of this nature occurring.”

A smaller rival demonstration of far-right protesters gathered on the opposite side of the street near the prime minister’s office, waving Union Jack flags and holding a banner reading “Britain First: take our country back.”

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2015/02/09/British-Muslims-protest-Charlie-Hebdo-Mohammed-cartoons-.html

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Western media fuel Islamophobia: European campaigners

09 Feb, 2015

European campaigners say Muslim are suffering a backlash of violent abuse amid rising Islamophobic sentiments following the recent terrorist attacks in Paris.

There has been a significant rise in incidents of hate and violence against Muslims in Europe.

Analysts blame mainstream western media for its grossly disproportionate representation of the facts of terrorism and its causes whilst ignoring the vast majority of Muslims who are trying to teach people about the truth of their religion.

Many Muslims and non-Muslims say that Muslims are suffering from persecution, terrorism and Islamophobia, yet many western government and media outlets treat Muslims as the problem.

http://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2015/02/08/396705/Western-media-fuel-Islamophobia

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Fanatics in France Fighting Alongside Islamic State Then Coming Back To Radicalise Youngsters

09 Feb, 2015

At least 17 men from a small town in southern France have reportedly joined Al-Qaeda or Islamic State to fight in Syria.

Three of the men from Lunel, which has a population of just 27,500, have even taken their wives or girlfriends with them. One of them even gave birth in the war zone.

Six men from the town have died, which accounts for 10 per cent of the French jihadists killed in the conflict, Adam Sage wrote in the Times.

Five people were arrested during anti-terror raids in the Abrivado neighbourhood only last month, according to France 24.

The French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the people arrested - aged between 26 and 44 - were 'suspected of active involvement in a jihadist network'.

He also claimed the network's members 'were recruited and indoctrinated, and who also indoctrinated and recruited several other French youngsters from Lunel'.

The town's mayor Claude Arnaud had previously doubted the existence of such a network and suspected the men were 'self-radicalised' by online propaganda.

Full report at:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2943792/The-town-went-jihad-Fanatics-sleepy-French-neighbourhood-fighting-alongside-Islamic-State-Syria-coming-radicalise-youngsters.html#ixzz3RHSGBHNA

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Jihadist who faked own death demanded ‘condoms for the war booty’ from UK family

09 Feb, 2015

A senior British jihadist who faked his own death to return to the UK complained to his compatriots about the lack of luxury goods in the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), a court has heard.

Imran Khawaja, who was jailed for 12 years on Friday, was a leading figure in Rayat al-Tawheed – a group with IS links. He had asked his family and friends to send cocoa butter, toiletries and “condoms for the war booty,” and subsequently complained when they failed to arrive.

Woolwich Crown Court heard his group faked his death in 2014 to allow him to escape and return to the UK undetected, though he was reportedly only coming back to raise money for weapons and recruit other fighters.

Khawaja, also known as Abu Daigham al–Britani, was a prominent member of the violent Islamist group, and appeared in several promotional videos, one of which shows him holding a severed head.

Full report at:

http://rt.com/uk/229919-jihadi-bodybuilder-fakes-death/

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France Former Premier Wants to Modify 1905 French Law to Integrate Muslims

09 Feb, 2015

Rabat – François Fillon, the former Prime Minister of France, is reportedly willing to review the 1905 French law on the separation of church and state in order to “successfully integrate” the Muslim community in France.

In the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo attacks, and given the recent increase in anti-Islamic acts in France, the question of the practicality of “Laïcité” (In English, secularity), the backbone of the French Republic, has sparked controversy.

In an interview with Le Figaro cited by Le Point, Fillon said that, “if we want to fully succeed in integrating the Muslim religion in the Republic, nothing should be prohibited.”

“I am committed to the principle of secularism, but to assume that nothing needs to change is a mistake. The 1905 Act is not a relic in a museum.”

Fillon added that “the law does not give us the opportunity today to control the training of imams, nor the source of funding of places of worship.”

However, French President François Hollande said at a news conference in Paris on Thursday that laïcité is “a guarantee for France,” and that “there is no question of changing the 1905 law.”

2 Join the Conversation. What do you think?

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/02/151202/france-former-premier-wants-modify-1905-french-law-integrate-muslims/

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UK needs to take urgent action over anti-Semitism, lawmakers say

9 February 2015

Urgent action is needed to tackle a "disturbing" rise in anti-Semitism in Britain including measures to deal with growing "cyber hate" on social media, a group of senior lawmakers said on Monday.

Last week, the body which advises Britain's estimated 260,000 Jews on security reported that the number of anti-Semitic incidents in Britain had risen to a record level last year.

Many of those incidents were sparked by the 50-day conflict in Gaza that ended in August. Israel launched its Gaza offensive with the declared aim of halting rocket attacks by Hamas. More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed, along with 73 mostly Israeli soldiers.

The rise in incidents prompted a parliamentary inquiry into anti-Semitism.

"Whilst the Jewish community is diverse and multifaceted there is a palpable concern, insecurity, loneliness and fear following the summer's rise in incidents and subsequent world events," the report by the cross-party group of lawmakers said.

"A more sophisticated understanding of anti-Semitism is needed, together with better defined boundaries of acceptable discourse."

Full report at:

http://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/UK-needs-to-take-urgent-action-over-anti-Semitism-lawmakers-say-390454

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Putin: Challenge Posed to International Community by ISIL Unprecedented

9 February 2015

Russian President Vladimir Putin said the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorist group poses a great threat to the global community.

"The challenge posed to the international community by the Islamic State (of Iraq and the Levant) terrorist group is unprecedented. In essence, the terrorists are trying to gain control over a huge part of Iraq and Syria with a population of nearly 10 million," Putin said in an interview with Egyptian newspaper Al Ahram on the eve of his visit to Cairo.

"And they already threaten countries which are far from the Middle East region. We have witnessed this in France, Australia, and Canada," he said. Today’s developments in Syria and Iraq stem, among other things, from a heavy-handed and irresponsible interference from the outside into the affairs of the region and unilateral use of force, ‘double standards’, and differentiating between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ terrorists."

Full report at:

http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13931120000416

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Southeast Asia

 

Non-Muslims should not accept translated copies of Quran – MCCBCHST

9 February 2015

The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) refers to a project organised by the Islamic Information and Services Foundation under which one million copies of the Quran will be produced and translated into Tamil, Chinese, English and Malay to be distributed to the public.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who is the project’s patron said it was aimed at lessening misconceptions and alleviating the fear of Islam amongst non-Muslims.

Dr Mahathir further gave an example of “the verse that allowed Muslims to kill non-Muslims only touched on one event in the history of Islam. It does not mean we are told to kill other people”.

The reason and example advanced by Dr Mahathir on the need to distribute the translated version of the Quran to the non-Muslims specifically does not make sense.

It is some Muslims who are indulging in killing and condemnation of other religions and religionist. Therefore, the need is for Muslims to be educated on the true teachings of Islam and not the non-Muslims.

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/sideviews/article/do-not-accept-translated-al-quran-mccbchst#sthash.ZhyHpMP7.dpuf

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Local Muslims told to spurn radicalism

09 Feb, 2015

Moderate Muslims across Southeast Asia must work to discredit radical interpretations of Islam, a Bangkok seminar has been told. 

Ehud Ya'ari, an Israel-based fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said Islamic organisations in Indonesia and the rest of the region should help diffuse the spread of terrorism by debating issues around extremism. Mr Ya'ari was speaking at an Institute of Security and International Studies seminar exploring how Southeast Asia can learn from turmoil in the Middle East.

“If you do not come to the Middle East, it will come to you,” he said, warning that Muslim populations everywhere must be one step ahead of radicalisation threats or risk domestic problems like those seen in the Arab world. David Menashri, an academic from Tel Aviv University's Centre for Islam Studies, said the form of “political Islam” preached by militants including Islamic State misrepresents the religion. He said such interpretations twist radical versions of teachings and claim to be a “highway to salvation” and the “true Islam”.

http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/general/469092/local-muslims-told-to-spurn-radicalism

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Indonesians up in arms over Jokowi crony firm, Proton deal

9 February 2015

Indonesians were stunned by their president's decision to appoint a little-known organisation headed by a political affiliate as the partner for a joint venture with Malaysia's Proton Holdings Bhd to build a national car, the Jakarta Globe reported today.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, who was on a two-day state visit to Malaysia, had witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Indonesia's PT Adiperkasa Citra Lestari (PT ACL) to help the company develop and manufacture an Indonesian national car.

Signing on behalf of Proton was chief executive officer Datuk Abdul Harith Abdullah, while PT ACL chief executive officer Abdullah Mahmud Hendropriyono, signed for the company.

The Jakarta Globe reported that Abdullah was a close associate of Megawati Soekarnoputri, who was Jokowi’s political patron and chairman of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P).

"That the president picked his company – which is not registered with Indonesia’s Industry Ministry and whose history and line of business remain unknown – to represent Indonesia in the joint venture has prompted speculation of yet another concession being made by the president to his party chief," the daily reported.

A party official Ulil Abshar Abdala was reported to have tweeted: “Suharto was in power more than 25 years before he granted the concession for a national car to his cronies. Just FYI, bro."

Full report at:

http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/indonesians-up-in-arms-over-jokowi-crony-firm-proton-deal#sthash.DP7mQL9s.dpuf

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Mideast

 

Hamas MP: Jewish treachery and conspiracies led to the Holocaust

9 February 2015

Jewish "conspiracies and treachery" led to the Holocaust, a Hamas MP said in a recent speech translated by MEMRI on Monday.

In a speech aired on Hamas's Al-Aqsa TV on January 23, Hamas MP Marwan Abu Ras charged that Germany supports Israel to the detriment of the Palestinians in order to "to make amends for its historical sin toward the Jews."

He attacked Germany and the West for arming Israel at Hamas's expense.

"How is it our fault? What did we have to do with your burning of the Jews? Were the Jews burned for no fault of their own?" he queried.

"Their conspiracies and treachery are what led to their being burned. Their deception and plots against humanity led to their being burned. They conspired against all people - even against people who were benevolent toward them," he said.

"They stabbed in the back even those who were good to them. They command no good and forbid no evil. Germany knows this full well. It is, therefore, the West that supplies the illegitimate, foundling, so-called "state" with weapons of destruction," Abu Ras added.

http://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/Hamas-MP-Jewish-treachery-and-conspiracies-led-to-the-Holocaust-390465

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Yemen rebels to meet with rivals for first time since takeover

9 February 2015

Yemen’s Shiite rebels are meeting with political rivals for the first time since cementing their power grab last week by dissolving parliament and making their top security body the de facto government.

The talks brokered by United Nations envoy Jamal Benomar on Monday included representatives from a coalition of the country’s top political parties as well as the party of ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The negotiations last broke down on Thursday after politicians accused the rebels, known as Houthis, of refusing to offer any political concessions, including lifting a siege imposed on President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and his cabinet members, who had earlier resigned from their positions in protest.

The Houthis dissolved parliament the next day and appointed a Revolutionary Committee to govern the country.

http://indianexpress.com/article/world/middle-east-africa/yemen-rebels-to-meet-with-rivals-for-first-time-since-takeover/

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Iranian leader: In confronting Islamic extremism, mullahs must be evicted from Middle East

09 Feb, 2015

PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Speaking at an international conference titled, "Islamic Fundamentalism: Roots, Solutions, Role of Iranian Regime," Maryam Rajavi, the head of the Iranian opposition group the National Council of Resistance of Iran said, "The first and foremost imperative step in confronting extremism under the veneer of Islam is to evict this regime, particularly from Iraq and Syria."

At the event held in Paris on Saturday Rajavi said, "the consequences of any partnering with the mullahs' regime in the coalition against ISIS is a hundred times more dangerous than any brand of Shiite or Sunni Islamic fundamentalism and it would inescapably expand and aggravate the current catastrophe."

Among other speakers was former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who strongly criticized the Obama administration's policy on Iran and the region. "Iran is more dangerous than ISIS," Giuliani said. "We don't need Iran to fight ISIS." Speaking of officials of the Iranian regime, he added, "We don't need murderers and assassins on our side."

Full report at:

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/iranian-opposition-leader-in-confronting-islamic-extremism-mullahs-must-be-evicted-from-middle-east-300032583.html

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Saudi support for Palestine unflinching, Palestinian minister says

 9 February 2015

Palestinian Minister of Women’s Affairs Dr. Haifa al-Agha has said that the Kingdom plays an important and strategic role in favor of the Palestinian cause. In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), she said the Kingdom didn’t stop or retreat from its honorable position to support the Palestinian cause, stressing that Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman plays a prominent and significant role for the benefit of the cause of Palestine and its people.

Meanwhile, a delegation of foreign ministers from member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has begun an unprecedented visit to Norway aiming to mobilize international support for the Palestinian cause.

The OIC delegation, headed by Foreign Minister of Egypt Sameh Shoukry met Foreign Minister of Norway Borge Brinde.

The delegation delivered a message to the Norwegian government on Israeli practices that have led to the failure of the nearly a quarter-century-old peace process, with successive Israeli governments using this period to change the facts on the ground, intensify Judaization campaigns against Al-Quds, build settlements, double the number of Jewish settlers in the West Bank to 600,000, in addition to the construction of the Apartheid Wall and the attacks on Palestinians in all ways and forms.

In a related development, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday ordered the formation of a committee to oversee cases to lodge with the International Criminal Court. The Palestinians formally joined the ICC last month, in a move that will enable them to submit war crimes and crimes against humanity complaints against Israel.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/02/09/Saudi-support-for-Palestine-unflinching-minister-says.html

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Iran FM says nuclear talks extension not in anyone's 'interest'

 9 February 2015

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif appeared to rule out any new extension to tough negotiations with world powers over his country's suspect nuclear programme, as he met top US diplomat John Kerry for new talks.

"I do not think another extension is in the interest of anyone, as I do not believe this extension was either necessary or useful," Zarif told a global security conference, meeting in the southern German city of Munich.

"In my view extension is not useful, not conducive to an agreement, and all my energy and focus and that of my colleagues and I'm sure my negotiating partners .... are all focused on reaching an agreement as early as possible."

Kerry and Zarif held a second round of talks here Sunday, meeting for about 90 minutes as they try to hammer out a political accord to rein in Iran's atomic ambitions ahead of a March 31 deadline. Kerry was due to fly back to Washington later in the day.

Few details of the tough negotiations have leaked, but world powers are trying to ensure that Iran's pathways to developing a nuclear weapon are cut off, in return for a gradual easing of international sanctions which have crippled Iran's economy.

Zarif refused to publicly discuss the details of the accord, but said "we are engaged in a very serious discussion."

Full report at:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/122498/World/Region/Iran-FM-says-nuclear-talks-extension-not-in-anyone.aspx

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Yemen falls to Iran in regional proxy war

 9 February 2015

The toppling of the Yemeni government by Iranian backed Shi’ite Houthis has upped the ante in the regional sectarian Sunni-Shi’ite struggle.

Yemen is perfectly set to become a sectarian war that will see millions more in foreign funds transferred to various proxy forces in the country, as in the case of the ongoing civil war in Syria.

Sunni states are likely to dramatically increase support for their brothers in the country, not holding back funds from jihadists and other Islamists, just as has been done in Syria.

Iran and its allies in the region are not going to sit by either.

And then there is the question of the world superpowers, which we can expect will intervene as they have in Syria, with the US increasingly favoring the Shi’ite axis, led by Iran, as it does not want to ruin ongoing nuclear negotiations with the country. It also seeks to use Iran to counter Sunni jihadists such as Islamic State and al-Qaida. Recent reports reveal that the US is cooperating with the Houthis to target al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on Sunday for a peaceful transition of power in Yemen after the country’s dominant Houthi movement dissolved parliament on Friday.

“The situation is very, very seriously deteriorating with the Houthis taking power and making this government vacuum in power. There must be a restoration of the legitimacy of president [Abd Rabbuh Mansur] Hadi,” he said.

Full report at:

http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Yemen-falls-to-Iran-in-regional-proxy-war-390397

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Turkey’s PM says AKP will not succumb to ‘Jewish lobby’

 9 February 2015

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu has said his government will not succumb to the Jewish lobby, the Armenian lobby or the lobby of the Turkish-Greek minority, a sentence he said in regards to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s words on Jan. 31 that the Gülenists in the country, which he dubs “the parallel structure,” have joined forces with the Israeli intelligence service.

“I announce it from here: we have not and will not succumb to the Jewish lobby, the Armenian lobby or the Turkish-Greek minority’s lobbies,” said Davutoğlu during a speech at the ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) provincial congress in Istanbul Feb. 8. “I call out to the parallel lobby that sent them a message: We will stand before you with dignity no matter where you are; you will be despicable for the treason you have done to this nation.”

While addressing a meeting of business leaders in Istanbul on Jan. 31, Erdoğan had said the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen’s supporters, “the parallel structure,” was in cooperation with Israeli intelligence organization, the Mossad.

“The sincere people backing this parallel structure should see this structure is cooperating with … Shame on them if they still cannot see that this structure is cooperating with the Mossad,” Erdoğan said.

Erdoğan accuses the followers of Gülen of illegal wiretappings and a “coup attempt,” starting from the revelation of a large corruption investigation in December 2013 that included four former ministers and their sons, who were later acquitted of all the charges pressed against them.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkeys-pm-says-akp-will-not-succumb-to-jewish-lobby-.aspx?pageID=238&nID=78079&NewsCatID=338

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Alevis march against compulsory religion classes in Istanbul

 9 February 2015

A group of Alevi associations partnered with the Eğitim-Sen teachers’ union staged a rally on Feb. 8 in Istanbul’s Kadıköy district against compulsory religion classes and forming the education system according to religious rules.

The Alevi-Bektaşi Federation (ABF), the Alevi Associations Federation (ADF), the Alevi Foundations Federation (AVF) and the Pir Sultan Abdal Cultural Association (PSAKD) attended the rally called “Cooperation and Unity for secular, scientific, mother tongue-based education and democratic life.”

Thousands of people, including members of political parties and unions, marched and carried banners to express their reaction to compulsory religion classes and the imposition of religion.

The banners read “No to imposition of religion, language, sect and identity. Equal and free citizenship!” and “Long live the brotherhood of nations and freedom of religion.”

The state could not define Alevis and that cemevis were Alevis’ houses of worship, the protesters also shouted. 

Full report at:

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/alevis-march-against-compulsory-religion-classes-in-istanbul-.aspx?pageID=238&nID=78076&NewsCatID=339

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IDF destroys last remnants of Hamas tunnel near Gaza border fence

 9 February 2015

In recent days the IDF has completed the destruction of the remnants of a tunnel, most of which was destroyed last summer during Operation Protective Edge.

The tunnel’s path was taken out of commission and was under the full control of the IDF prior to its destruction.

The operation took place in Israeli territory near the border fence with Gaza. Soldiers also uncovered a number of weapons left over from the summer conflict.

The efforts are part of the IDF Southern Command initiative to fortify defenses in the Gaza border area.

http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/IDF-destroys-last-remnants-of-Hamas-tunnel-near-Gaza-border-fence-390456

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Abbas book tying Nazism to Zionism to be translated to Hebrew

 9 February 2015

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas's 1984 book linking Nazism to Zionism, as part of his pursuit of a doctorate degree at a Moscow institution,  is set to be translated into Hebrew, Walla! news reported Monday.

The work, titled The Other Side: The Secret Relationship Between Nazism and Zionism was first released in Jordan and has, since then, seen light in academic libraries across the globe - particularly in Arab-speaking nations - and is accessible on the PA's official website.

Spanning 252 pages and  16-chapters, Abbas's published work claims that Nazi and Zionist ideologies aligned. He outlined their cooperative relationship and went as far as to say that David Ben-Gurion and Adolf Hitler were "good friends."

Abbas's text accuses the Zionist movement of participating in the Holocaust, cooperating with the Third Reich, and actively foiling plots to rescue Jews, their guiding motive being the formation of a national state in "Palestine."

Full report at:

http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Crossing-the-Arabic-threshold-Abbas-book-tying-Nazism-to-Zionism-to-be-translated-390468

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North America

 

Hug a Muslim, Social Experiment to Build Mutual Trust

09 Feb, 2015

“Islam means Peace.” Hug a Muslim

In response to recent hate crime and bullying against Muslims due to Islamophobia, we walked the streets of downtown Toronto to see the reactions of Canadians on how Muslims are made to feel because of false media.

The response was touching and inspiring.

We wish to break down barriers and spread awareness about Islamophobia, encourage Muslims to behave as the prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) taught us in kindness and good manners, to teach both extremist muslims and non muslims that violence and terrorism is NOT islam, and we urge non-Muslims to learn about the true Islam. Pick up a Quran and learn for yourselves the truth. People may interpret any faith in how they choose to perceive it, but the Quran is the only unaltered message/scripture.

“We have believed in Allah and in what was revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, and the Descendants, and in what was given to Moses and Jesus and to the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and we are Muslims [submitting] to Him.” (Quran 3:84)

http://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2015/02/151315/hug-muslim-social-experiment-build-mutual-trust/

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Islamic center opens its doors for 'Meet Your Muslim Neighbor' event

09 Feb, 2015

The Islamic Society of Greater Chattanooga held "Meet Your Muslim Neighbor," an open house for members of all belief systems to learn about the religion over coffee and snacks, at the I.S.G.C. Center on Gunbarrel Road.

Dozens of people were spaced throughout the center's large gymnasium, munching and mingling, while members of the community handed out translated copies of the Quran, a slim book on the 50 most-asked questions about Islam, and cards with illustrations explaining Islamic prayer rituals.

Several "Discover Islam" placards lined the walls, offering answers to such questions as "What is Islam and who are Muslims?" and "How does Islam guarantee human rights?" Just off the gymnasium, hijab-wearing teachers gave tours of the Annoor Academy, a pre-kindergarten to fifth-grade school at the center.

Eventually the center's imam, Abdul Baasit, took up a microphone, and standing in the center of the gymnasium, addressed the crowd.

"I want to tell you how pleased we are to have you here," Baasit said. "You need no appointments to come here. We are obliged to show you what we have here, and what we have in our hearts."

Full report at:

http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2015/feb/08/islamic-center-opens-its-doors-meet-your-musl/287172/

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Take a look inside the Islamic Organization mosque

09 Feb, 2015

The Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier was formed in 1970. Membership grew over the years, and in 1999 the organization moved to its current location on Grand Avenue in Johnson City, former site of the Fair Play Caramel Company.

Capable of handling 2,000 worshippers, the building has two identical front entrances, one for men and one for women. Inside, an Islamic decorative canon hangs on the wall of an otherwise unornamented entrance hall.

To preserve cleanliness, shoes are removed upon entering the mosque. Shoe shelves are found just inside the doors, and an ablution fountain is located downstairs, where worshipers may perform ritual washing before entering the prayer room.

Upstairs, the prayer room is a large open space virtually bare of furniture where worshippers sit, kneel and bow directly on the carpeted floor. Congregational prayer is led from a pulpit which is located next to an arched niche.

A floor-to-ceiling wall runs the length of the prayer room, with men occupying one side and women the other. A one-way mirror is embedded in the wall allowing women to view the prayer service.

Islamic art is characterized by a strong sense of orderliness, balance and symmetry. Consistent with this concept is the Islamic Organization of the Southern Tier mosque in Johnson City.

About the book

Full report at:

http://www.pressconnects.com/story/news/local/2015/02/06/take-look-inside-islamic-organization-mosque/23018151/

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ISIS threat at an ‘entirely different level’ than al-Qaeda, says Gen. John Allen

09 Feb, 2015

The growing threat from the Islamic State is at an “entirely different level than al-Qaeda was,” said retired Gen. John Allen, the president’s special envoy for the coalition against the militant group.

Allen said threats from the group should be taken “very seriously” and noted that it is adapting to new strategies. The Islamic State is more organized than it was, has a better command and control and has better "situational awareness of a broader battle space across the entire region," he said during an interview on ABC’s “This Week.”

“You don’t see the long convoys now with flags flying in broad daylight," he said. "But we have also adapted our targeting process, as well.”

Allen said the video released last week showing the Islamic State burning a Jordanian pilot alive “absolutely” backfired on the group, as Jordan’s King Abdullah II has vowed to fight back.

Full report at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2015/02/08/isis-threat-at-an-entirely-different-level-than-al-qaeda-says-gen-john-allen/

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CAIR Welcomes President Obama's Prayer Breakfast Remarks on Islam, Urges Visit to U.S. Mosque

09 Feb, 2015

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today welcomed President Obama's remarks yesterday at the National Prayer Breakfast in which he stated that terrorists who "professed to stand up for Islam. . .in fact are betraying it."

He also described the terrorist group ISIS as "a brutal, vicious death cult that, in the name of religion, carries out unspeakable acts of barbarism."

The president added:

"Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ."

Full report at:

http://www.cair.com/press-center/press-releases/12842-cair-welcomes-president-obamas-prayer-breakfast-remarks-on-islam.html

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IS threat pushes Afghanistan out of US priority list

9 February 2015

WASHINGTON: The war against the Islamic State militants has pushed Afghanistan out as US President Barack Obama seeks congressional authorisation to use military force against the IS militants.

The first indication that the focus has moved away from Afghanistan to the Islamic State came earlier this week when Nato ministers met in Brussels to discuss their strategy for 2015. And for the first time in 13 years, Afghanistan was not on their agenda.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest told a news briefing in Washington that the Obama administration would request Congress to authorise the use of military force against the Islamic State terrorists.

The United States has been carrying out air strikes against the IS militants since August last year. The administration, however, has used an authorisation Congress gave to former president George W. Bush on Sept 11, 2001, to carry out these attacks.

Obama seeks congressional authorisation to use force against IS

The decision to seek a fresh authorisation shows that the Obama administration may increase its military operations against the militants.

Full report at:

http://www.dawn.com/news/1162464/is-threat-pushes-afghanistan-out-of-us-priority-list

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US-led coalition squeezing Islamic militants: Kerry

February 09, 2015

An international coalition battling against Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria is beginning to win back territory and deprive the jihadists of key funds, US top diplomat John Kerry said yesterday as he denounced the group's "new level of depravity".

Washington has rallied more than 60 countries in the fight against the Islamic State group, and while Kerry told a global security conference it would be a long battle, he said there were signs the strategy was working.

Since August there have been 2,000 air strikes by the coalition, Kerry told the Munich Security Conference, saying it had helped to retake some 700 square kilometres in territory, or "one-fifth of the area they had in their control."

The US secretary of state did not specify whether the regained territory was in Iraq or Syria, but he added the coalition had "deprived the militants of the use of 200 oil and gas facilities ... disrupted their command structure.... squeezed its finance and dispersed its personnel."

"We are forcing them to change tactics," Kerry insisted, pointing to the defeat of IS in the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane.

Full report at:

http://www.thedailystar.net/us-led-coalition-squeezing-islamic-militants-kerry-63909

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URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/pieces-of-debris-from-holy-mosques-sold-on-black-market/d/101437

 

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