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Social Evils, Such as Child Marriage, "Sati Pratha", A Ban on Widow Re-Marriage Cropped UP In Indian Society Due to Islamic Invasion: RSS Leader

New Age Islam News Bureau

04 September 2023


RSS leader Krishna Gopal



·         Assam Panel to Draft Anti-Polygamy Law, Submit Report Within 45 Days

·         Article 370: Kashmiri Pandit group questions credentials of petitioner NC leader Akbar Lone in SC

·         Centre seeks apology from NC leader Akbar for raising 'Pakistan Zindabad' slogan in J-K Assembly

·         ‘Petitioning SC is not illegal': Omar Abdullah on withdrawal of lecturer's suspension

·         Imam Abdullahis Safi of the Ahle HadizJamat embarks on green mission in Murshidabad to combat climate change


North America

·         CAIR Condemns Marches by Neo-Nazi Groups, Chanting “We Are Everywhere” in Florida

·         Nigeria suspends almost all diplomatic missions

·         after defeat: MP

·         US occupation plunders Syrian oil to support, finance terrorists: Iraq’s Fatah

·         Canada’s Ottawa shooting leaves 8 dead, injured



·         Sudan: Air StrikeParamilitary Rapid Support Forces on Khartoum Kills At Least 20

·         Niger: Thousands Protest In Third Day Of Rallies Demanding Withdrawal Of French Troops

·         Banditry: Uba Sani recruits 7,000 vigilantes, orders probe of Kaduna Mosque killings

·         MURIC tasks Imo Gov on denial of palliatives to Muslims


Arab World

·         Iran FM: Turkiye welcomes return of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia, Iran

·         Saudi foreign minister meets Tunisian counterpart

·         Prince Saud Bin Abdulaziz's dedication to be part of Saudi Arabia's progress and renaissance



·         ‘Judiciary’s Blue-Eyed Boy’, PTI Chairman Imran Khan, Need Not Go Abroad: PMLN Leader

·         Pakistan, US Committed to Eliminate Menace Of Terrorism: Pakistan's Ambassador to the US

·         Army action urged for release of hostages in Sindh

·         Ex-Punjab CM’s principal secretary Bhatti arrested

·         Wazir remanded in police custody again


South Asia

·         Afghanistan, World Need to Connect, Find Solution: Chief of Islamic Relief Worldwide

·         Afghan Independent Journalists Association confirms release of 9 Journalists in 20 days

·         A top leader of banned militant organisation Hizb-ut-Tahrir arrested in Bangladesh

·         Dozens of Afghan Children Returned from Iran Each Day: Nimroz Official

·         OIC Delegation Visits Kabul to Share Members' Concerns

·         US Deputy Assistant Secretary Mira Resnick in Dhaka to discuss Indo-Pacific, military cooperation, rights issues

·         EU and UAE ambassadors discuss Afghanistan situation in Brussels

·         Civil Aviation Authority issues new guidelines for flights from Afghanistan to Pakistan



·         Raeisi: Respect for Sovereignty, Integrity of Other States Key in Anti-Terror Fight

·         Iran’s ambassador meets FM before departing for Saudi Arabia

·         Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; Iranian genius in Golden Age of Islam

·         Explosion at coal mine in Iran’s north kills 6: media

·         Iraqi security forces deploy in Kirkuk after four protesters killed in ethnic clashes


Southeast Asia

·         Ahmad Zahid Confident Johor Voters Will Not Be Influenced ByMuhyiddin's ‘Fatwa’

·         I’m Open To Criticism, But Won’t Tolerate Incitement, Slander: Anwar

·         PM Anwar questions Muhyiddin's authority to issue fatwa against Pakatan’s Pulai hopeful, calls for an end to such acts

·         Zahid gets discharge not amounting to acquittal in Yayasan Akalbudi trial

·         Confusion over reason for postponement with police, says Hadi's political secretary

·         Freeze on foreign workers for barber, textile, goldsmith subsectors lifted



·         Swedish Police Arrest Two as Riot Breaks Out at Holy Quran Burning Protest

·         Ukrainian Air Force shoot down 23 of 32 Shahed UAVs launched upon Ukraine

·         Swedish police arrest man trying to prevent another desecration of Qur’an

·         Germany under fire for violating rights of ethnic minorities in Namibia

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau



Social Evils, Such as Child Marriage, "Sati Pratha", A Ban on Widow Re-Marriage Cropped UP In Indian Society Due to Islamic Invasion: RSS Leader


RSS leader Krishna Gopal


04th September 2023


NEW DELHI: Social evils, such as child marriage, "sati pratha", a ban on widow re-marriage, cropped up in the Indian society, leading to subjugation of women, due to the Islamic invasion, a senior RSS functionary said on Sunday.

In the medieval period, various kinds of restrictions were put on women and girls to protect them from invaders, senior Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) functionary Krishna Gopal said while addressing an event titled "Nari Shakti Sangam" organised at the Delhi University.

Stating that the medieval period was a very "difficult" time, he said, "The entire country was struggling with subjugation. Temples were demolished, big universities destroyed and women were in danger. Lakhs of women were abducted and sold in markets the world over.Be it (Ahmad Shah) Abdali, (Muhammad) Ghori, (the Mahmud of) Ghazni, all of them took women from here and sold them in markets across the world. It was an era of great humiliation," Gopal said.

Hence, to protect women and girls, several restrictions were imposed on them by "our society" and "as a result, they stopped going to schools, gurukuls and became uneducated", he added.

The RSS leader also claimed that the practice of child marriage started as people used to get theirs daughters married off at a young age to protect them from invaders.

"There was no sati pratha in our country. But jauhar (self-immolation) started happening, women started becoming sati. Restrictions on remarriage of widows were imposed with a large number men getting killed in wars, resulting in a shortage of men," he claimed.

Before the Islamic invasion, women used to participate in "shastrath" (scholarly debates) and even gave verses to the Vedas, Gopal said.

The RSS leader said over the years, the situation has changed, with girls outperforming boys in board exams today and women making huge contributions in various fields.

He, however, cautioned women against being influenced by the western culture and exhorted them to remember the Indian values to pass those on to their children.

"The women of our country have to be careful against western influence. Use technology, fly airplanes, work in the ISRO, become a scientist, doctor or engineer -- do whatever you like, but remain a woman," Gopal said.

"A woman is the pivot of her family, remember that," he said, adding that it is a woman who imbibes values in her children.

The RSS leader also said taking care of the family and managing the kitchen at home are as important as having a career in a desired field.

"Do you know that Indiraji (former prime minister Indira Gandhi) used to manage her kitchen herself when Nehruji (Indira Gandhi's father Jawaharlal Nehru) was the prime minister?" he asked the gathering.

"In our country, women are in respectable positions. We must see our past, look at the present, retain what is good, rectify what is not right," he added.


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Hindu Group Stages Protest in Support of Accused in Alleged Molestation Case Involving Muslim Girl In Madhya Pradesh


Photo: Muslim Mirror


September 4, 202

By Muslim Mirror Staff

Communal tensions in Madhya Pradesh seem to be on the rise, as Hindu organizations’ confrontations with Muslims continue to escalate. In the most recent incident, a case of misbehaviour and a scuffle involving Shahr Qazi and a Muslim woman has come to light, resulting in a riot by pro-Hindu organizations. The local police have registered an FIR against both the accused parties and the Shahr Qazi.

According to reports from Journal Mirror, the incident unfolded in the Silver Park Colony of Dewas district last Thursday when a group of 6-7 boys, reportedly affiliated with a Hindutva organization, began making lewd comments at a Muslim woman passing by.

The woman, who was subjected to this distressing act, happened to be acquainted with the junior Qazi of the district. Upon receiving information about the incident, Qazi Abul Kalam and several local residents immediately gathered at the scene, sparking a protest against the offenders.

The incident has raised concerns about the increasing tensions between Hindu and Muslim communities in the state. The police have taken action by filing an FIR against those involved, including the accused boys and the Shahr Qazi himself, as investigations into the incident continue.

On Saturday, the Chamunda Hinduist organization assembled outside Kamlex to call for an escalation of Section 307 concerning Kazi. Following this, Vikram Singh Pawar, the son of MLA, arrived at the scene and diffused the situation by fostering understanding.


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US Seeking to Resurrect Daesh Terrorist Group In Syria After Defeat: MP Joydah Mikhail Thaljah


People suspected of being members of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group are seen at a prison cell in Hasakah, Syria. (File photo by Reuters)


04 September 2023

The United States is working on a scheme to set free thousands of Daesh terrorists incarcerated in US-run detention centres in Syria in order to resurrect the terrorist group, says a Syrian lawmaker.

“Anytime that the United States finds itself bogged down and losing ground, it releases Daesh terrorists and members of other terror groups from its prisons and spreads them across Syria in order to generate tensions,” Joydah Mikhail Thaljah, a member of the People’s Assembly of Syria, said on Sunday evening.

She noted that the scenario of letting the terrorists go serves as a pretext to re-occupy Syrian territories and loot the Arab nation’s natural resources.

The Syrian legislator added that the American military needs to keep its forces in Syria, and the plot helps it prolong its presence on Syrian soil with the purported claims of combating terrorism.

The Iraqi political faction affirmed that the presence of US forces in Syria is aimed at supporting terrorist groups there.

Moghaith Ibrahim, another Syrian lawmaker, also attributed the upsurge in the economic and social problems in Syria to the presence of American occupation forces in his country, noting that US military convoys continue to plunder Syria’s resources.

The US military has stationed forces and equipment in northeastern Syria, with the Pentagon claiming the deployment is aimed at preventing the oilfields in the area from falling into the hands of Daesh terrorists.

Damascus, however, maintains that the unauthorized US deployment is aimed at plundering the country’s rich mineral resources.

Last month, residents of a village in Syria’s northeastern province of Hasakah, in coordination with government forces, blocked a US military convoy as it was attempting to pass through their community.

According to a report published by Syria’s official news agency SANA, the convoy of armoured vehicles had to turn around and head back in the direction it came from after the locals of Hamu village intercepted and expelled it from the area on August 26.


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150 al-Shabaab Terrorists, Affiliated with the al-Qaeda, Killed In Somalia


Photo: MEHR News


Sep 4, 2023

Two days ago, 20 members of the terrorist group were killed in a joint air operation by the Somali army and its allies.

News sources also reported Saturday night that 13 members of the al-Shabaab terrorist group were killed in the operations of the Somali army.

The al-Shabaab terrorist group is an armed group affiliated with the al-Qaeda terrorist network and has claimed responsibility for many terrorist operations that have killed hundreds of people in Africa.

The armed group repeatedly attacks government troops and peacekeeping forces of the African Union in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, and in other parts of the country and has carried out several brazen operations in other parts of Africa as well.

Since July 2022, the Somali government forces have conducted military operations against the Al-Shabab group in cooperation with armed tribesmen.


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UAE’s Sultan AlNeyadi, First Arab Astronaut On Long-Term Space Mission, Back On Earth


Moment UAE astronaut Sultan Al Neyadi emerges from Dragon capsule


September 04, 2023

DUBAI: Emirati astronaut Sultan Alneyadi and the rest of Crew-6 mission, NASA astronauts Stephen Bowen and Woody Hoburg and Rocosmos cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev, returned to Earth after a six-month stay at the International Space Station (ISS).

Teams from NASA and SpaceX earlier on Sunday have given a ‘Go’ for Crew-6 mission to undock from the space station after scuttling earlier plans due to inclement weather on Earth. Their SpaceX capsule parachuted into the Atlantic off the Florida coast early Monday morning.

“Splashdown of Dragon confirmed – welcome back to Earth, Steve, @Astro_Woody, Andrey, and @Astro_Alneyadi!” SpaceX posted on the social media account X.

Before departing the space station, they said they were craving hot showers, steaming cups of coffee and the ocean air since arriving in March. Their homecoming was delayed a day because of poor weather at the splashdown locations.

SpaceX launched their replacements over a week ago.

UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed extolled AlNeyadi’s feats, and in a social media posting said, “@Astro_AlNeyadi, the people of the UAE are immensely proud of you and the entire team for achieving major advances in space exploration. You carried the dreams of a nation to new frontiers, and we celebrate your pioneering journey and safe return.”

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, the Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, also commented on the safe return of AlNeyadi, who went on a long mission to the space station.

Another crew switch will occur later this month with the long-awaited homecoming of two Russians and one American who have been up there an entire year. Their stay was doubled after their Soyuz capsule leaked all of its coolant and a new craft had to be launched.

Between crew swaps, the space station is home to seven astronauts.

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre (MBRSC) announced Saturday morning that AlNeyadi's scheduled return from the ISS has been delayed due to unfavorable weather conditions.

AlNeyadi, the first Arab astronaut deployed on a long-term space mission and the first to complete a spacewalk, will undergo several days of medical testing, evaluation and mission debriefs in the US before returning home to the UAE.


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Assam panel to draft anti-polygamy law, submit report within 45 days

04th September 2023

By Express News Service

GUWAHAT:  The Assam government has constituted a three-member committee to draft the proposed anti-polygamy law. It has been constituted with Advocate General, Legal Remembrancer and Director General of Police. Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that the state government had earlier constituted a committee to examine the ‘legislative competence of the state legislature’ to enact a law to end polygamy.

“We first wanted to check if the state government has the right to ban polygamy. We had formed a committee with retired Gauhati High Court judge Justice Rumi Phookan as its chairperson and it said that the government has the right to do so,” said Sarma. The government had sought the views of the public on the law. Altogether, 149 individuals and organisations responded and of them, 146 supported it while the remaining objected it.

“Ahead of the last Assembly elections, we had promised to bring in a law against love jihad. We have now formed another committee and assigned it to draft the proposed anti-polygmy law,” Sarma said. He was hopeful that the bill can be introduced in the Assembly in December. The previous committee had understandably scrutinised the provisions of Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Act, 1937, along with Article 25 of Constitution of India, in relation to the directive principle of state policy for a uniform civil code.

Earlier, Sarma could not share any data on the prevalence of polygamy in the state but he said that many cases were detected in southern Assam’s Barak Valley and central Assam’s Jamunamukh and Hojai. Polygamy is almost nil among indigenous Muslims and people who are educated, he said.

Response sought

The government had sought views of people on the law. Altogether, 149 individuals and organisations responded and 146 of them supported the proposed law while the remaining objected. Earlier, Himanta Biswa Sarma could not share any data on the prevalence of polygamy but he said many cases have been detected in Barak Valley, Jamunamukh and Hojai


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Article 370: Kashmiri Pandit group questions credentials of petitioner NC leader Akbar Lone in SC

03rd September 2023


NEW DELHI: A 'Kashmiri Pandit' group has questioned in the Supreme Court the credentials of Jammu and Kashmir National Conference leader Mohammad Akbar Lone, one of the petitioners challenging the abrogation of Article 370, claiming he was a supporter of secessionist forces.

An intervention application in the apex court has been filed by 'Roots in Kashmir', which claims to be a group of Kashmiri Pandit youths, seeking to bring some additional documents and facts on record in the matter.

It alleged that the Jammu and Kashmir National Conference leader Mohammad Akbar Lone is known as "a supporter of secessionist forces operating in J&K, who support Pakistan. The petitioner No. 1 (Mohd Akbar Lone), was a member of the legislative assembly from 2002 to 2018 and has shouted slogans like 'Pakistan Zindabad' on the floor of the J&K Assembly," the intervention application alleged while referring to several media reports in support of their claim.

"The said fact was widely reported by media houses. Thereafter, he not only admitted shouting the slogan but refused to tender an apology when asked by the journalists. Mr. Lone, also while addressing the media, hesitated to identify himself as an Indian. Similarly in his rallies also he is known for spreading pro-Pakistan sentiments," it said.

The group of Kashmiri Pandits said that two mainstream political parties of Jammu and Kashmir - National Conference represented by Mohd Akbar Lone and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) represented by its President Mehbooba Mufti- are among those who have challenged the abrogation of the provision which bestowed special status on the erstwhile state.

"Both the referred mainstream parties in J-K have openly supported Article 370 and have vehemently opposed any exercise that merely applies the entire constitution to all the people of J&K," it said.

The group said that Lone, representing the National Conference party, has often openly made pro-Pakistan statements and probably that explains his opposition to challenge any move that brings the people of J-J-K on par with the rest of the country.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal is appearing for Lone in the matter.

The hearing would resume on September 4 and the top court has asked the respondents, who are defending the Centre's August 5, 2019, decision to abrogate Article 370, to conclude their arguments on Monday, itself.

Several petitions challenging the abrogation of the provisions of Article 370 and the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which split the erstwhile state into two Union


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Centre seeks apology from NC leader Akbar for raising 'Pakistan Zindabad' slogan in J-K Assembly

04th September 2023


NEW DELHI: The Centre on Monday told the Supreme Court that it wants National Conference leader Mohd Akbar Lone to apologise for raising Pakistan Zindabad's slogan in the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly in 2018.

Lone is the lead petitioner challenging the abrogation of Article 370 that accorded special status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir.

A five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud was told by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, that Lone is the lead petitioner challenging the abrogation of the provision, but he has to state that he owes allegiance to the Constitution and apologise for raising the slogan on the floor of the House.

The bench also comprising Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Sanjiv Khanna, BR Gavai and Surya Kant said it will seek a statement from Lone when his turn for rejoinder arguments comes.

The bench said it has gone through the report published in the newspaper and taken note of the submissions made in the court.

Mehta said, "These statements coming from senior leaders have its own effect. If no apology is given, it would encourage others. This will have an effect on steps taken to bring normalcy in Jammu and Kashmir.

"Mehta was supported by senior advocates Rakesh Dwivedi and V Giri, who are appearing for intervenors and are supporting the abrogation, that Lone must furnish an affidavit apologising for raising slogans.

On September 1, a Kashmiri Pandit group questioned in the top court the credentials of Lone, claiming he was a supporter of secessionist forces.

An intervention application in the apex court has been filed by an NGO 'Roots in Kashmir', which claims to be a group of Kashmiri Pandit youths, seeking to bring some additional documents and facts on record in the matter.

It alleged that Lone is known as a supporter of secessionist forces operating in J-K, who support Pakistan.


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‘Petitioning SC is not illegal': Omar Abdullah on withdrawal of lecturer's suspension

By HT News Desk, New Delhi

Sep 04, 2023

Petitioning the Supreme Court is neither illegal nor anti-national, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah said on Monday, welcoming the UT administration's move to revoke the suspension of a lecturer who supports the restoration of Article 370 in the former state.

“I think it is a good thing. His suspension was, I think, a violation of his fundamental right to seek justice from the Supreme Court. All he was doing was petitioning against what happened on the 5th of August. Petitioning the Supreme Court can neither be seen as something illegal nor anti-national. The fact that his suspension was raised by Kapil Sibal ji, and yesterday that was overturned, I think it is a good nothing,” Abdullah told PTI.

Zahoor Ahmad Bhat, a political science lecturer at Srinagar's Government Higher Secondary Higher School, was suspended by the Jammu and Kashmir administration on August 25, two days after he made a Supreme Court appearance in favour of Article 370.

His suspension was lifted on September 2, days after the apex court raised questions over the action taken against him, and directed Centre's top law officers to speak to Jammu and Kashmir lieutenant governor Manoj Sinha in this regard.

On August 2, a five-judge Supreme Court bench, headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, began hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the Narendra Modi government's August 5, 2019, move to abrogate Article 370 of the Constitution of India; the article granted a semi-autonomous status to the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir and by withdrawing it, the government ‘integrated’ J&K with the rest of the country.

Also, as part of the abrogation, Jammu and Kashmir got spilt into the Union territories of J&K, and Ladakh. To maintain law and order in the wake of its decision, the government took several measures, including putting top politicians from the Valley under house arrest. As many as three former chief ministers were among those put under house arrest – Farooq and Omar Abdullah of the National Conference (NC) and Mehbooba Mufti of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).


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Imam Abdullahis Safi of the Ahle HadizJamat embarks on green mission in Murshidabad to combat climate change


Alamgir Hossain

Imam Abdullahis Safi of the Ahle HadizJamat in Murshidabad's Gangapur has embarked on a green mission to make villagers understand the need to plant trees in a bid to combat climate change.

Safi is the imam of a village with 1,200 households, mostly from the minority community.

The Ahle HadizJamat has set up a village committee with the imam at the helm. Under his leadership, committee secretary Safikur Rahaman and treasurer Motiul Haque have begun the plantation drive as they believe it would help ensure more rainfall and cool the area.

The initiative, however, is an exercise in involving villagers rather than an act of imposition. The trio of Safi, Rahaman and Haque have been visiting each home to understand the specific plant preference of each family.

"As part of this plantation drive, the committee has already distributed two saplings each — one of a fruit plant and one hardwood — to 700 families on August 26," said a villager.

Asked what made a religious leader like him launch a green mission, Safi said: “The world is getting warmer and we are paying the price for rampant urbanisation that has led to the felling of trees. To increase greenery in our area, we are distributing saplings in consultation with each family. So far, we have handed over 1,400 plants."

The job of Safi and his team does not end with the distribution of plants. They visit the 700 households to see if the owners are taking proper care of the saplings.

"People are becoming aware of the need to plant trees. But the responsibility doesn't end with planting the saplings. We pay regular visits to ensure that the plants are doing well,” Safi said, adding that the families were indeed taking good care of the plants.

The trio has spent Rs 50,000 so far to buy the saplings from a local nursery. The money was raised through crowdfunding.

Haque added: "We made the mission inclusive because without it no effort can succeed. Responding to our appeal, employed youths of our village came forward with money. The funds helped us buy the saplings that we have so far distributed to 700 homes in Gangapur under Beldanga police station area."

Appreciating the initiative, Pasupati Mondal, a villager who also got saplings, said: “Members of the committee visited us to ask which plants we liked. I chose mahogany and mango saplings and received them. I planted those on August 26. My family is watering the plants and taking good care of them. I am genuinely happy with this effort in our village.”

The committee intends to cover the entire village, including the graveyard, with trees. Haque, the committee's cashier, said that as Rs 1 lakh was raised from crowdfunding, the plantation's second phase would be held on September 9.

“In all, we have resolved to plant 2,500 trees under this drive," he said, adding 1,100 saplings would be distributed next.


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North America


CAIR Condemns Marches by Neo-Nazi Groups, Chanting “We Are Everywhere” in Florida

Ibrahim Hooper

September 3, 2023

(WASHINGTON, DC, 9/3/2023) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned marches by neo-Nazis in Florida on Saturday.

Members of the hate groups, raising the Nazi salute and chanting “we are everywhere,” marched through parks in the Orlando area, with one group appearing at the gates of Walt Disney World.

The neo-Nazis marched just days after CAIR-FL and its national office called on political leaders to stop “tolerating, embracing and emboldening” supremacist ideology nationwide after a deadly “racially motivated” mass shooting in Florida. 

CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper said in a statement:

“We must stand united against the resurgence of hate groups and ideologies nationwide that seek to undermine the progress we have made in building more just and equitable societies.

“It is imperative that individuals, community leaders and policymakers come together to condemn and counteract this hateful rhetoric, ensuring that all people may live free from bias-motivated violence and intimidation.”

He noted that CAIR recently condemned the distribution of neo-Nazi propaganda CD’s to homes in Miles City, Mont., and similarly condemned a gathering held by a neo-Nazi organization in Augusta, Maine

In June, CAIR’s Georgia chapter expressed solidarity with the Jewish community after neo-Nazis rallied outside a synagogue.

CAIR’s mission is to protect civil rights, enhance understanding of Islam, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.                  

La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertadesciviles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a losmusulmanesenlosEstados Unidos.


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Nigeria suspends almost all diplomatic missions

3 Sep, 2023

Nearly all of Nigeria’s ambassadors are heading home in an overhaul of Abuja’s diplomatic missions, President Bola Tinubu’s office has announced. The two representatives at the UN will be spared for now, they added.

A press release published by Presidential Adviser AjuriNgelale on Saturday said that “President Bola Tinubu has directed the recall of all career and non-career ambassadors from their duty posts worldwide” with immediate effect.

According to the document, the decision was made as a result of a “careful study of the present state of affairs at Nigerian Consulate Offices and Embassies worldwide.”

The stated aim of the measure is to ensure that Abuja’s diplomatic missions deliver “world-class efficiency and quality.”

Exchange rate crisis will keep Nigerian fuel costs high – analystREAD MORE: Exchange rate crisis will keep Nigerian fuel costs high – analyst

Given the upcoming UN General Assembly, Nigeria’s permanent representatives at the international body based in New York and Geneva are exempted from the recall, Ngelale said.

According to Reuters, the African nation has 109 diplomatic missions worldwide.

Tinubu, who assumed office in late May this year, has since replaced Nigeria’s defense chief, along with the heads of the army, navy, and air force.

In June, the president also dissolved the boards of federal government institutions, agencies, and state-owned enterprises.

Among the reforms the president has carried out so far is the removal of fuel subsidies, with the aim of redirecting the funds toward the agricultural sector.

The measure has, however, seen a sharp rise in the cost of food and transportation in Nigeria.


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US occupation plunders Syrian oil to support, finance terrorists: Iraq’s Fatah

 03 September 2023

An Iraqi political faction has affirmed that the continued presence of US occupation forces in Syria and the plunder of the Arab nation’s oil resources are part of efforts to provide support and funding for terrorist groups.

A’ed al-Helali, a member of the Fatah (Conquest) Alliance in the Iraqi parliament, made the statement in an interview with the Arabic-language Almaalomah news agency published on Sunday.

Helali stressed that the US troops are present in the Syrian regions east of the Euphrates River with the aim of providing logistical and financial support for the terrorist groups by exploiting the oil in the restive area.

"The American forces, since their presence in the eastern Euphrates region in Syria, have been working to steal Syria’s oil extracted from the fields of that region," the senior Iraqi lawmaker said.

Helali underlined that the United States was working on schemes aimed at investing in the Syrian oil in order to “finance the terrorist groups that it had created."

"The US is not wasting money from its own budget, but is trying to find other outlets to obtain it in order to finance terrorist groups, which is what it is doing with the Syrian oil," he added.

"The presence of US forces in the Syrian eastern Euphrates region is for supporting these [terrorist] groups."

Iran advises the United States to take its military forces out of Syria.

US military trucks and tankers frequently carry tons of grain and crude oil from the northeastern Syrian province of Hasakah to the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region in northern Iraq as part of Washington’s systematic smuggling of basic commodities out of Syria.

The US military has for long stationed its forces and equipment in northeastern Syria, with the Pentagon claiming that the deployment is aimed at preventing the oilfields in the area from falling into the hands of Daesh terrorists.

Damascus, however, maintains the deployment is meant to plunder the country’s natural resources. Former US President Donald Trump admitted on several occasions that American forces were in the Arab country for its oil wealth.

Since 2014, the US has deployed forces and military equipment in Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a United Nations mandate under the pretext of fighting Daesh, but there have been several reports showing Washington's direct or indirect support through its regional allies for the terrorist group over the past years.

The Takfiri outfit has already been driven out of all its urban bastions both in Iraq and Syria, but its remnants carry out sporadic terror attacks in both Arab countries.


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Canada’s Ottawa shooting leaves 8 dead, injured

Sep 4, 2023

Ottawa police said they had not yet apprehended a suspect but sped to the scene near the airport after reports of shots fired at about 10:21 p.m. Saturday night, according to a report published in The Globe and Mail.

Paramedics said they rushed the injured – including two men with fatal bullet wounds – to hospital after several people were shot in the parking lot outside the wedding reception

“This is an active and ongoing investigation. All investigative angles are being explored,” it said in a statement, adding there was no indication the killings were hate-motivated.

The killings are the 11th and 12th homicides in Ottawa so far this year.


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Sudan: Air StrikeParamilitary Rapid Support ForcesOnKhartoum Kills At Least 20

September 04, 2023

In Sudan, twenty people including two children have been killed in an attack by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces in the capital Khartoum.

The Sudanese Armed Forces said the RSF carried out ‘indiscriminate shelling’ on Karari and Wad al-Bakhit neighbourhoods in northern Omdurman, northwest of the capital city, killing civilians and wounding multiple others.

Sudan has been witnessing deadly armed clashes between the SAF and RSF in Khartoum and other areas since April 15, which left over three thousand people killed and more than six thousand injured.


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Niger: Thousands protest in third day of rallies demanding withdrawal of French troops

 September 4, 2023

Thousands of demonstrators in Niger on Sunday held a third day of rallies calling for former colonial ruler France to withdraw its troops, as sought by the junta which seized power in July.

"Down with France! France get out," the demonstrators chanted, repeating slogans heard at various rallies in Niamey since the coup d'etat on July 26.

Niger's military regime had fired a new verbal broadside at France on Friday, accusing Paris of "blatant interference" by backing the country's ousted president.

Since then, tens of thousands of people have joined in the protest at a roundabout, close to the Niger military base where French soldiers are stationed.

Relations with France, the country's former colonial power and ally in its fight against jihadism, went swiftly downhill after Paris stood by ousted president Mohamed Bazoum,

On August 3, the regime announced the scrapping of military agreements with France, which has about 1,500 soldiers stationed in the country.

Niger's military rulers have also announced the "expulsion" of the French ambassador Sylvain Itte and said they are withdrawing his diplomatic immunity. They said his presence constituted a threat to public order.

But French President Emmanuel Macron last Monday hailed Itte's work in Niger and said he remained in the country despite being given a 48-hour deadline to leave.

On Sunday, France once again justified keeping its ambassador in place.

"He is our representative to the legitimate authorities in Niger," said Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna in an interview with Le Monde newspaper,

"We don't have to bow to the injunctions of a minister who has no legitimacy", she added, assuring that Paris was ensuring "that he can face the pressure from the putschists in complete safety".


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Banditry: Uba Sani recruits 7,000 vigilantes, orders probe of Kaduna mosque killings

September 3, 2023

After initiating the training of 7,000 young individuals for recruitment into the Kaduna State Vigilance Service (KADVS) to address issues of banditry and other security challenges, Governor Uba Sani has ordered security agencies to investigate killings of worshippers at Ikara Mosque and hunt down the culprits.

The governor gave the probe order for the Friday night attack, saying that he would go to any length within the law to bring the Ikara bandits to book.

The Nation had reported that gunmen suspected to be bandits attacked a Mosque at Saya-Saya village in Ikara Local Government Area of the State, Friday night, killing five worshippers and two others at a different location before escaping into the bush.

In a statement issued on Sunday by his Chief Press Secretary, Muhammad Lawal Shehu, Governor Sani described the attack as wicked and barbaric. He therefore directed security agencies to thoroughly investigate the incident and go after the perpetrators.

Shehu stated: “The visibly angry Governor vowed to go to any length within the law to bring the Ikara bandits to book. His Government, he said, will not rest on its oars until peace and stability is restored to every part of Kaduna State. His words:

“We understand the concerns and anxieties of the residents of Ikara, in particular, and Kaduna State, in general. Your safety and security are our top priorities, and we want to reassure you that we are working tirelessly to maintain peace and stability.”

“We encourage the public to remain calm and vigilant during this period. We also call upon all residents to cooperate with law enforcement agencies and provide any relevant information that could assist in the ongoing investigation.”

The statement also said that Governor Uba Sani has sent a delegation led by the overseer of the Ministry of Internal Security and Home Affairs (MISHA), Samuel Aruwan, to condole the people of Saya-Saya village.

He said the delegation would also carry out an assessment of the security and humanitarian situation in the area and advise the government appropriately.

In a related development, Governor Sani while flagging off the training of 7,000 recruits of the Kaduna Vigilance Service (KADVS) drawn from the 23 local government areas of Kaduna state, said the recruitment was aimed at having more boots on the ground to assist the federal security agencies against bandits and other criminal elements.

The governor said: “The Kaduna Vigilance Service is a complementary security outfit. It will assist the Security Agencies with actionable intelligence. With its knowledge of the local environment, bandits will have no hiding place.

“The commencement of this training is a major step towards fulfilling our promise to the good people of Kaduna State. In our administration’s BLUEPRINT, we committed to strengthening the manpower and “overall operational capacity of KADVS. Since its establishment, KADVS has been working with security agencies to degrade criminal elements. But, we face the challenge of inadequate personnel to successfully wage the battle against bandits and other criminal elements. It is for this reason that our administration decided to recruit 7,000 personnel into the Kaduna Vigilance Service (KADVS).

“The recruitment and screening of the trainees was the collaborative efforts of our local government chairmen, traditional and religious leaders, key stakeholders at the grassroots level, and Security Agencies. The screening was very thorough. We have here energetic young men and women of transparent honesty who are committed to securing our local communities.”


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MURIC tasks Imo Gov on denial of palliatives to Muslims

September 3, 2023

Imo State Muslim indigenes have been left out of the distribution of subsidy palliatives in the template rolled out by the Imo State Government on Thursday, August 31, 2023.

Meanwhile an Islamic human rights organization, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has described the move as unfair, unjust, discriminatory and injurious to healthy democratic practice.

This was disclosed in a press release issued on Saturday, 2nd September, 2023 by the Executive Director of MURIC, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

MURIC said: The government of Imo State on Thursday, 31st August, 2023 announced the mode of distribution of palliatives to citizens of the state. According to the plan, 65,000 bags of rice would be shared among 34 different groups.

“Surprisingly, however, whereas the Imo State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) was conspicuously listed as one of the 34 groups with its name coming up as beneficiary number 5, the name of Imo Muslim Council (IMC) was also conspicuously missing on the list.

“CAN was also made a member of the distribution committee comprising of state commissioners, the Head of Service, the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) the chairman of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), the Special Adviser on Labour Matters, and others described as ‘critical stakeholders’.

“MURIC strongly condemns the crooked modus operandi adopted by the Imo State Government. It is unfair, unjust, exclusive, discriminatory and injurious to healthy democratic practice.

“Imo Muslim indigenes are not in any way immune to the devastating impact of subsidy removal. But by excluding them from the list of beneficiaries of the subsidy palliative, Governor Hope OdidikaNzodinma appears to be telling the world that they do not deserve any support to cushion the effect of the removal of petroleum subsidy simply because they dare to remain Muslims in a predominantly Christian environment.

“This is a gross encroachment on Allah-given fundamental human rights of a minority group. With this attitude, the message which Governor Uzodinma appears to have sent to Nigerians is, ‘Indigenous Muslims of Imo State don’t deserve palliatives. They can go hungry. They can starve. How can an indigene of Imo State be a Muslim? I don’t care a dime so long as Christians in my state are comfortable.’

“The same people who rush to accuse Muslims in power over perceived discrimination against Christians have demonstrated worse flair for segregation, stigmatisation and exclusivity. Those who come to equity must come with clean hands. The Imo State Government has failed in this regard.

“We demand immediate rectification of this monumental injustice. We task the state governor to show readiness to give Muslims of Imo State extraction a sense of belonging by adjusting the distribution list to reflect the inclusion of Imo State indigenes who are Muslims.”


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Arab World


Iran FM: Turkiye welcomes return of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia, Iran

September 03, 2023

RIYADH: Turkiye welcomes the return of diplomatic relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran, Tehran’s foreign minister said on Sunday.

Saudi Arabia and Iran agreed in March to reestablish diplomatic relations and reopen their embassies following years of tensions between the two countries.

During a press conference with his Turkish counterpart in Tehran, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said Iran is working on holding a tripartite economic meeting with Saudi Arabia and Turkiye.

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan is on a visit to Iran and it is his first official trip to the country since assuming the position of top diplomat.

“The visit will render the opportunity to discuss the possibilities for further advancing our bilateral cooperation in all fields with Iran,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.


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Saudi foreign minister meets Tunisian counterpart

September 03, 2023

RIYADH: Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan on Sunday met with Tunisian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Migration and Tunisians Abroad Nabil Ammar in Riyadh.

During the meeting, the ministers reviewed the strong fraternal relations between their countries and ways to strengthen them across various fields. They also discussed the most prominent developments in regional and international arenas of mutual concern.

After the meeting, the Saudi foreign minister and his Tunisian counterpart chaired the third meeting of the political consultation committee between the two countries, during which both sides stressed the importance of strengthening coordination on issues of common interest.

The committee’s meeting was also attended by Dr. Sami Abdullah Al-Saleh, the assistant minister of state for African affairs, and Dr. Abdulaziz bin Ali Al-Saqr, the Kingdom’s ambassador to Tunisia.


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Prince Saud Bin Abdulaziz's dedication to be part of Saudi Arabia's progress and renaissance

September 03, 2023

RIYADH — Prince Saud Bin Abdulaziz Bin Fahd Al-Farhan Al-Saud, a prominent figure in Saudi Arabia, is not only a source of inspiration but a dedicated advocate for positive change in the nation's development.

In an interview with Caterer Middle East, Prince Saud highlights his commitment to creating a better Saudi Arabia, particularly by empowering the youth and contributing to the country's Vision 2030.

Prince Saud recognizes the pivotal role of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman in Saudi Arabia's future, referring to him as the main enabler and supporter of the nation's youth.

With over 65 percent of the population being under 30, he emphasizes the importance of harnessing the boundless ambition of Saudi Arabia's young generation.

One way Prince Saud contributes to Saudi Arabia's development is through his involvement in the rapidly growing hospitality industry.

As the executive chairman of Yakoon International Hospitality Company, he plays a significant role in promoting Saudization and creating job opportunities for the youth.

Under his leadership, Yakoon has become a major player in the sector, offering world-class planning and hospitality management services.

Prince Saud is personally involved in the company's daily operations, ensuring that employees receive the best treatment and work in a healthy environment. He values creativity and collaboration within his team.

Expressing his passion for hospitality, Prince Saud emphasizes its importance as a fundamental human need, not just an accessory. He envisions a bright future for Yakoon, with ongoing expansion and development in Saudi Arabia's rapidly growing economy.

Beyond his business endeavors, Prince Saud is deeply committed to charity work and giving back to society. He serves as the chairman of the Saudi Autism Society, addressing complex issues facing families with autistic members.

He believes in the Saudi people's inherent generosity and their desire to contribute to society's betterment.

Through initiatives such as the Saudi Autism Society and the world's first endowment fund for autism, Prince Saud aims to improve the quality of life for thousands of families affected by autism in Saudi Arabia.

He also heads the coordinating committee of autism in the country, overseeing various autism societies and organizations.

Despite his far-reaching contributions to Saudi Arabia, Prince Saud remains humble, viewing himself as a simple citizen dedicated to serving his nation.

He draws inspiration from his faith and the belief that when Allah intends something, it becomes reality.

Prince Saud's commitment to empowering the youth, supporting Saudization, and his philanthropic efforts make him a prominent figure in Saudi Arabia's journey towards a brighter future.


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‘Judiciary’s Blue-Eyed Boy’, PTI Chairman Imran Khan, Need Not Go Abroad: PMLN Leader

September 04, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Former interior minister and PMLN leader Rana Sanaullah on Sunday took a jibe at PTI Chairman Imran Khan, saying the blue-eyed boy of the judicial system need not go abroad.

“Who is spending money on Imran Niazi?” the former interior minister asked. “Those he works for are trying to save him. First, they made him a hero, gave him foreign funding and brought him to power after which Pakistan’s economy and foreign relations were destroyed.”

In a statement issued on Sunday, Sana said that the path to civil war was paved through inflation whereas the minds of youth were filled with “gunpowder so that they could attack when and where they wanted”.

Amid reports that former prime minister Imran Khan hired a UK-based lawyer to represent him in international courts, Rana Sanaullah said that a “puppet is being used to defame Pakistan globally”.

“Going to the International Court of Justice means making Pakistan stand in the global dock as a criminal,” the senior PMLN leader said adding that only enemies of Pakistan could do this despicable act.

On September 1, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf announced on its official X — formerly known as Twitter — account: “PTI chairman and former PM Imran Khan has appointed the eminent human rights Barrister Geoffrey Robertson KC of Doughty Street Chambers to advise and represent him in international courts in relation to unlawful detention and human rights abuses.”

A PTI source in Islamabad said that the decision to hire Robertson was taken by Khan on the advice of Omar Ayub Khan, Zulfi Bukhari and his lawyers in Pakistan after consulting “some important people in the UK”.

Subsequently, on September 2, PTI revoked the services of Geoffrey Robertson KC after a backlash and severe criticism in the media.

Doughty Street Chambers said it has been told by PTI that Robertson’s services will not be required due to criticism in Pakistan.

Sanaullah said that occupiers of Palestine and Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) were jubilant when they found out that Pakistan would be taken to international court.

As soon as the PTI announced it had hired Robertson, there was a lot of criticism in the media which revealed that the lawyer had been involved in campaigns against the Pakistani military, propagating false theories about the 1971 war and breakup of Bangladesh from Pakistan.

In August, PTI announced it had revoked engagements of UK solicitor Rashad Yaqoob, his organisation Human Rights Legal Aid Foundation (HRLAF) and Azhar Siddique, the Pakistan Supreme Court lawyer who is now based in Manchester.


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Pakistan, US Committed To Eliminate Menace Of Terrorism: Pakistan's Ambassador to the US

September 04, 2023

Pakistan's Ambassador to the United States Masood Khan says Pakistan and the US have succeeded in retaining their cooperation in security realm and expanding their relationship in economic sphere over the last two years.

Speaking at Global Santa Fe, a prestigious think tank of New Mexico, he said although the United States has withdrawn its troops from Afghanistan and its footprint in that part of the world has decreased, the threat of terrorism is still potent. He said the TTP terrorists are killing Pakistanis.

He said we have lost more than 1500 people since the US withdrew its troops from Afghanistan.

The Ambassador said both the US and Pakistan have resolved that they will eliminate this menace together through cooperation in counter terrorism.

Masood Khan said Pakistan and United States have a shared responsibility to steer Afghanistan towards stabilization because the stability of the entire region depends on stabilization in Afghanistan.

Masood Khan stressed the need for promoting people to people contacts and strengthening economic, trade and investment ties, terming it the future of the relationship.

The Ambassador invited entrepreneurs and business community to invest in Pak startups, science, engineering, technology, extractive industry, healthcare, pharmaceuticals and other sectors for reaping benefit of a large market of Pakistan and its surrounding region.


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Army action urged for release of hostages in Sindh

 September 4, 2023

LARKANA / DERA GHAZI KHAN: A large number of people took to the streets in different cities of Sindh on Sunday to protest against the abduction of some members of the minority Hindu community and increasing incidents of robberies in the province.

The sit-in, in which people from all faiths are participating, was staged for the recovery of the abducted members of the Hindu community in Kashmore, including Mukhi Jagdish Kumar, Sagar Kumar, Jaideep Kumar and Dr Munir Naij. The protest entered the second day on Sunday, with the relatives of kidnap victims demanding their early and safe recovery.

The protesters demanded an operation by the army and Rangers against the kidnappers and bandits. They regretted that despite the passage of 24 hours, the police and administration had failed to recover the hostages, adding that the sit-in would continue till their release.

Due to the sit-in, buses, ambulances and freight vehicles going to Punjab and Balochistan were stuck on different roads and highways of Kashmore.

Protest sit-ins held in Kashmore, Larkana and Karachi

In Larkana, Pooj Hindu Panchayat Chairman Haresh Lal, Dr Dayali Gul, Nanin Ram, Dr Sudham Chand and others led a rally taken out from Hindu Dharamshala. The demonstration was later joined by representatives of the Larkana Chamber of Commerce and Industry and leaders of Awami Tehreek.

The protesters, carrying banners and portraits of kidnap victims, raised slogans against the poor law and order situation in Kashmore-Kandhkot district and increasing incidents of robberies in Larkana.

Addressing the participants at Jinnah Bagh gate, the leaders of Hindu Panchayat, Awami Tehreek and LCCI said police had failed to initiate a decisive action against the bandits who were continuously uploading videos on social media showing kidnapped victims being tortured.

The speakers said bandits had not only challenged the state’s writ but also harmed its interests.

Karachi sit-in

KARACHI: The Minority Rights March and Aurat March hold a sit-in on Sunday to press the authorities for an early release of kidnap victims from the clutches of dacoits in Sindh. Some people had travelled all the way from Kashmore and Sukkur to participate in the demonstration at Clifton.—Shakil Adil / White Star

In Karachi, the Minority Rights March and Aurat March called a protest at Teen Talwar in Clifton, which turned into a huge sit-in, to demand justice for the abducted Sagar Kumar, Mukhi Jagdish, Dr Munir and minors Jaideep Kumar and Priya Kumari.

The protesters, many of whom had travelled all the way from Kashmore and Sukkur, held up banners and posters with pictures of the missing persons as they complained about the law and order issue in Kashmore, Sukkur and northern Sindh, and demanded the speedy recovery of all the abductees.

“We are raising our voices here in Karachi, the capital of Sindh, because Kashmore, probably, is too backward a town and, maybe, the voices of the victims’ families and the people of that area are not reaching the corridors of power from there,” said a protester from Kashmore.

Human rights activist Pastor Ghazala Shafique said people of Kashmore have no peace, thanks to the lawlessness there. “They live in fear because of the bandits. And police, too, are offering them no protection,” she said.

“Even the landlords there are offering protection to the bandits instead of the people,” she pointed out.

Social activist Sheema Kermani said such kind of unlawful activities from gangs aren’t possible without patronage from landlords and police.

“So many of the abductees have been missing for years and months but it is being said by police that they have been recovered. Yet their families are saying that they have not reached home,” she said.

Town planner Arif Hasan said, “People have been wronged here since times immemorial, but at least there are people who raise their voices against the wrongs. Protests can raise awareness and make people think. They can bring change, though it may take time for that to happen,” he said.

All the protesters at the sit-in then announced that they had no intention of budging from their positions until midnight. “We will only move after getting assurance from the chief minister of Sindh to do something for the recovery of the missing persons and the law and order situation in Kashmore and northern Sindh,” said Pastor Ghazala.

Meanwhile, caretaker Sindh Home Minister Haris Nawaz while talking to the media in Thatta said a plan has been finalised for launching an operation against bandits in the riverine areas of Jacobabad and Shikarpur and the next phase of operation would be more result-oriented.


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Ex-Punjab CM’s principal secretary Bhatti arrested

September 04, 2023

LAHORE: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Sunday arrested former chief minister’s principal secretary, Muhammad Khan Bhatti, for alleged corruption in development projects.

Muhammad Khan Bhatti was the principal secretary to Punjab’s former chief minister Pervaiz Elahi.

As per sources in the bureau, Muhammad Khan Bhatti influenced his position and, in connivance with Pervaiz Elahi and other accused, appointed their confidant Mahr Azmat Hayat as XEN of Punjab Highways Department, Gujrat Division, and then promoted him to the post of Superintending Engineer (SE), Gujrat Circle.

They further alleged that accused Pervaiz Elahi in connivance with Muhammad Khan Bhatti and other accused, by disregarding rules, approved 116-km road development schemes under supplementary grants with the ulterior motive of receiving bribe and kickbacks. Moreover, the accused Pervaiz Elahi, Moonis Elahi and Muhammad Khan Bhatti got awarded contracts of road development works to their nominated contractors through Mahr Azmat Hayat, SE Gujrat.

The accused persons issued payments to contractors without work done at site for the purpose of collecting bribe/kickbacks from contractors. The amounts of bribe/kickbacks were collected by Pervaiz Elahi, Moonis Elahi and Muhammad Khan Bhatti through Mahr Azmat Hayat and Sohail Asghar Awan (personal secretary of Moonis Elahi).

The NAB team interrogated Muhammad Khan Bhatti in the Central Jail, Lahore, on Sunday with the court permission and executed arrest warrants issued by the NAB chairman. Bhatti will be produced before Accountability Court, Lahore, on Monday (today).


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Wazir remanded in police custody again

September 04, 2023

ISLAMABAD:A trial court in Islamabad on Sunday remanded former lawmaker Ali Wazir in police custody for one day in connection with a case registered at the federal capital’s Bhara Kahu Police Station under the country’s anti-terrorism law.

This is the third case in which the former parliamentarian has been booked along with dozens of others including human rights lawyer Imaan Mazari in the wake of a Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) rally held on August 18.

On Sunday, September 3, authorities presented Ali Wazir in a district and sessions court where a duty magistrate, Shahzad Khan, was presiding over the hearing.

During the argument, the prosecution requested Wazir’s custody from the court, contending it needed to interrogate the former MP. The judge accepted the request and remanded him in custody for one day. Wazir will be presented in the relevant court on Monday.

A day earlier, an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Islamabad granted post-arrest bail to Imaan Mazari, while the Islamabad High Court (IHC) simultaneously prohibited local authorities from arresting her in any new cases. Imaan Mazari was already on bail in a sedition and rioting case.

The police had initially arrested the rights activist and Wazir on August 20, alleging interference in state affairs during the PTM rally. Subsequently, they were charged, along with dozens of others under the country’s sedition law for allegedly inciting rebellion through their speech at the rally.

Imaan was rearrested on August 28 in a terror case, barely hours after being granted bail in the sedition case. The ATC, on Friday, ordered authorities to detain Imaan in a women's police station until her bail application hearing and remanded her in judicial custody for 14 days.


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South Asia


Afghanistan, World Need to Connect, Find Solution: Chief of Islamic Relief Worldwide

By Mitra Majeedy

3 September 2023

The CEO of the Islamic Relief Worldwide, Waseem Ahmad, said he believes that the international community cannot be disconnected from Afghanistan for a long time.

In an interview with TOLOnews, he said: “The world is such now that it is a global village. And we cannot say that we can be disconnected from one country for a long time. We have to find a solution. We have to work together and this is going to happen inshallah.”

Ahmad said that Islamic Relief supported 1.5 million people across Afghanistan last year.

“Last Year Alone, we alhamdulillah supported 1.5 million people across Afghanistan. In 15 provinces, we are providing long term solutions to community problems,” he said.

The CEO of Islamic Relief also stressed the need for the education of girls in Afghanistan.

“We believe that education must be for all boys and girls and inshallah, we will work with other national and international organizations and authorities to see that how we adapt to different interventions and bring resources so that we can help young boys and girls in terms of pursuing their careers,” he said.

Islamic Relief is active in 40 countries of the world, and it opened its permanent office in Afghanistan in 2000. 


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Afghan Independent Journalists Association confirms release of 9 Journalists in 20 days

By Fidel Rahmati

September 2, 2023

The Afghan Independent Journalists Association (AIJA) has recently reported the release of nine journalists within twenty days. Among these journalists, Habibullah Sarab and Parwiz Sargand were granted their freedom on Saturday.

AIJA conveyed this positive news through a post on its official Facebook page. The organization highlighted the concerted efforts undertaken on behalf of journalists by pursuing legal actions and leveraging its advocacy for the cause.

Notably, the collective endeavours of AIJA and the broader media community within the country played a pivotal role in securing the release of seven journalists over merely three days.

The contexts surrounding these releases involve the arrest of several journalists approximately 23 days before the reported releases. These arrests spanned various provinces, including Kandahar, Nangarhar, Kunduz, Kunar, Paktia, and Zabul.

A closer examination of the timeline reveals that two journalists were released just two days after their initial apprehension. In a subsequent instance, five more journalists regained their freedom a few days before the recent developments.

On Saturday, September 2, the remaining two journalists were finally liberated, marking the culmination of this release series.

AIJA has proactively called upon the authorities of the de facto administration, the prevailing governing body, to adopt a proactive stance. This stance entails addressing issues linked to media work and addressing grievances related to media violations.

The organization’s advocacy for journalists’ rights is evident in its call for proper mechanisms, such as the Commission for Investigating Complaints and Handling Media Violations, to address media-related matters under the new governing structure.

This ongoing dialogue emphasizes the importance of a free press in the evolving landscape of Afghanistan.


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A top leader of banned militant organisation Hizb-ut-Tahrir  arrested in Bangladesh

Star Digital Report

Mon Sep 4, 2023

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) members yesterday arrested a top leader of banned militant organisation Hizb-ut-Tahrir from the capital's Mohammadpur.

Arrestee Abdul Baten, 60, was a fugitive accused in four cases, Rab-2 Assistant Director (Media) ASP Shihab Karim confirmed to The Daily Star this morning.

Three cases were filed under the Anti-Terrorism Act and one under the Special Powers Act. Two of the cases were filed with Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Police Station, and one each with Hazaribagh Police Station and Manikganj district's Daulatpur Police Station.

Baten is an active member of dawati and finance department of Hizb-ut-Tahrir. He was engaged in promoting militant books in different parts of the country including Dhaka, and encouraging the youth to join militancy, the Rab official added.

He was in regular contact with the ameer of the militant group's Bangladesh branch and used to distribute anti-state and anti-government leaflets.

According to the Rab official, Baten went into hiding five years ago and continued activities of the militant organisation.


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Dozens of Afghan Children Returned from Iran Each Day: Nimroz Official

By Abdul Ghafar Azizi

3 September 2023

Mohammad Omar Zubair, head of the work and social affairs department in Nimroz, said that dozens of Afghan minors are being deported from Iran to Afghanistan via Nimroz province every day.

According to Zubair, most of these children do not have the money to rejoin their families and relatives in their provinces.

“The movement of children at the border has increased. Now the institutions are not working, and we are trying to send these children to their provinces,” said Mohammad Omar Zubair.

Shabir Ahmed, 14, was arrested by the security forces of Iran and returned to Nimroz when he was planning to go to Iran illegally with his family.

“There were countless people in the camp. There were all kinds of people, underage, old people, hungry, with children, with families, and they didn't even have bread to eat.”

Meanwhile, some of these children, whose families live in Iran, want the current government to solve their challenges.

“They arrested us, sent us to the camp, and we had no money. We have been thirsty and hungry for a week,” said Mohubullah, a Ghor resident.

“They took us from Bandar Abbas and took us to the camp, now we don't have the fare for a car, and we don't know how to go home,” said Mer Ahmad, a Badghis resident.

According to experts, the increasing poverty and unemployment in the country have caused people under the legal age to immigrate illegally.

“There is no single mechanism for all-around support that can safely hand over these children to their families,” said Mohammod Mahmmodi, a lecturer.


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OIC Delegation Visits Kabul to Share Members' Concerns

By Mitra Majeedy,


A delegation of scholars and thinkers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has come to Kabul, with the aim of sharing the concerns of the member countries of the OIC with officials of the Islamic Emirate and religious scholars.

The OIC said on X social media platform that these scholars will meet and discuss various issues including women's education and work from the perspective of Islam with the officials of the current Afghan government and religious scholars in Kabul.

“The delegation's visit comes within the framework of the follow-up of the OIC General Secretariat to the resolutions of the Executive Committee and the Council of Foreign Ministers, which called on the Secretary-General of the OIC to dispatch a delegation of ulemas and religious scholars led by the International Islamic Fiqh Academy and other relevant religious institutions in the Muslim world to engage with Afghanistan on issues of utmost importance, such as tolerance and moderation in Islam, girls' education and women's work,” the OIC said on X.

"The Islamic world has some concerns regarding the education of girls and some other issues, such as the concerns of neighboring countries about the use of Afghan soil against them, which should be shared with the high-ranking officials of the Islamic Emirate,” said Zia Ulhaq Madani, a political analyst.

Meanwhile, these scholars emphasized that the Islamic world wants stability in Afghanistan, at a meeting with Political Deputy Prime Minister Mawlawi Abdul Kabir.

During the meeting Political Deputy Prime Minister once again emphasized the positive interaction of the Islamic Emirate with the world.

"The delegation advised the Islamic Emirate to use the experience of the Islamic world regarding girls attending school and women working in government offices and generally in all fields,” said Mohammad Hassan Haqyar, head of the media directorate of the political deputy of the PM.

Analysts said that religious scholars' visits to the nation are beneficial for resolving current issues and for fostering the world’s interaction with the Islamic Emirate.

"These visits have an impact on our relations with the entire world and present a positive image of Afghanistan to the world that Afghans are interactive people,” said Hamid Karokhai, a political analyst.

Following the establishment of the Islamic Emirate, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation restarted operations in Kabul on March 6, 2022. Including Afghanistan, OIC has 57 members.


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US Deputy Assistant Secretary Mira Resnick in Dhaka to discuss Indo-Pacific, military cooperation, rights issues

UNB, Dhaka

Mon Sep 4, 2023

Bangladesh and the United States will hold the ninth annual bilateral security dialogue in Dhaka tomorrow as part of the "comprehensive security relationship" between the two governments.

Deputy Assistant Secretary of the US Bureau of Political-Military Affairs Mira Resnick, who will lead the US delegation, arrived in Dhaka today.

The security dialogue is an annual, civilian-led discussion that touches on all elements of the security relationship between the two countries.

Representatives from both sides will discuss Indo-Pacific regional issues, security and human rights, military cooperation, peacekeeping, security assistance, and counterterrorism, among other topics, the US embassy in Dhaka said in a media note yesterday.

The United States and Bangladesh have a strong security partnership and share many interests in the Indo-Pacific region, said the embassy.

Both countries share a vision to ensure the Indo-Pacific region is free, open, peaceful, and secure.

"We have a variety of dialogues throughout the year in pursuit of these mutual objectives," the media note reads.

This year, the security dialogue closely follows the bilateral defense dialogue, which took place on August 23 and 24 in Dhaka.

The bilateral defense dialogue featured senior officers and civilians from the US and Bangladeshi militaries.

They discussed a range of issues specific to the military-to-military relationship, including military education, peacekeeping and upcoming military exercises, including next year's Disaster Response Exercise & Exchange.

The security dialogue covers a wide range of issues related to partnership between the two countries including strategic priorities and regional security issues, defense cooperation, civilian security cooperation, UN peacekeeping, counter-terrorism, and countering violent extremism.

Bangladesh is likely to reiterate its call to return Rashed Chowdhury, a convicted killer of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, to face justice. The Rohingya issue may also come up for discussion as a threat in the regional and global contexts.

At the 8th Security Dialogue held between the two countries at US Department of State in April last year, the two sides had "constructive discussions" on defence agreements like GSOMIA and ACSA as the US is keen to enhance security cooperation with Bangladesh.

General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) and Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA) are "essential" to enable a closer defense relationship, expand opportunities for defense trade, information sharing, and military-to-military cooperation between the United States and Bangladesh.

These issues are likely to come up for discussion as follow up, a diplomatic source told UNB.

Resnick oversees the Bureau's Office of Regional Security and Arms Transfers, which manages over $40 billion annually in government-to-government defense equipment transfers through Foreign Military Sales, Third Party Transfers, and Excess Defense Articles.

Resnick is also responsible for the Bureau's Office of Security Assistance, which manages approximately $6.5 billion in US security sector assistance annually; coordinates State Department oversight, planning, and input for over $9 billion in the Defense Department security sector assistance programs; and provides State Department input for Department of Defense planning and military activities.


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EU and UAE ambassadors discuss Afghanistan situation in Brussels

By Fidel Rahmati

September 2, 2023

The European Union’s special representative for Afghanistan, Tomas Niklasson, met with the UAE Ambassador in Brussels, Mohammad Al Sahlawi.

Niklasson emphasized the “importance of education opportunities, economic prospects, and participatory governance in Afghanistan” during the meeting, said on his social media platform X.

Meanwhile, he expressed eagerness to explore opportunities for enhanced cooperation that would benefit the people of Afghanistan.

The United Arab Emirates Embassy in Brussels highlighted their close collaboration with the EU to develop creative and sustainable solutions that support the Afghan population and uphold women’s rights.

Meanwhile, UN Special Rapporteur Richard Bennett engaged with various Afghan individuals, both men and women, to discuss the human rights situation in Afghanistan during his visit to Turkey.

Bennett’s four-day trip to Turkey involved interactions with Afghan men and women from diverse backgrounds and meetings with the Turkish government and UN entities.

The discussions reflect a multifaceted approach towards addressing challenges in Afghanistan, encompassing education, economy, governance, women’s rights, and human rights.

The meetings and collaborations underline the collective efforts of international entities like the EU, UAE, and UN to contribute to the Afghan population’s development, stability, and rights.

Since the Taliban’s takeover, they have imposed severe policies prohibiting women’s essential rights such as education and employment. Despite widespread condemnation from international and national entities, the Taliban has escalated their repressive measures and further curtailed women’s rights within the country.


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Civil Aviation Authority issues new guidelines for flights from Afghanistan to Pakistan

By Fidel Rahmati

September 3, 2023

On Saturday, Pakistan’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) reportedly introduced fresh guidelines for flights originating from Afghanistan and traversing Pakistan’s airspace.

New guidelines stipulate that flights entering Pakistani airspace from Afghanistan must now submit a minimum of 15 minutes advanced notice. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has clarified that flight services within Pakistan’s airspace will be accessible once prior notification is given.

According to CAA, flights within Pakistan’s airspace can access air traffic services with advance notification. This offering will be extended via the Karachi, Lahore, and Islamabad Area Control centres.

Furthermore, flights will be supported by air traffic services through the Dushanbe and Islamabad Area Control Air Link, which will significantly improve communication and coordination for flights operating within the region.

The CAA has issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) to emphasize these modifications and to urge airlines and operators to follow the updated procedures. This NOTAM remains in effect until November 2023.

The CAA spokesperson said that these measures are intended to improve the safety and efficiency of air travel in the region.

In recent times, security conditions in the country have experienced a decline, attributed to escalating attacks by militants targeting both police officers and civilians. Moreover, with general elections on the horizon, these precautionary measures have added significance to uphold and ensure national security.

As the threat of militant attacks continues to escalate, incidents targeting law enforcement personnel and innocent civilians have raised concerns about the overall security landscape. With impending general elections, maintaining a secure environment becomes pivotal to ensuring a safe and stable electoral process.


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Raeisi: Respect for sovereignty, integrity of other states key in anti-terror fight

03 September 2023

Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi says respect for national sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries is the most effective way to counter terrorism.

Raeisi made the remarks in a meeting with Turkey's Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan in Tehran on Sunday.

Turkey and Syria have been engaged in an ongoing dispute over the presence of Turkish forces in the Arab country.

"The effective exercise of national sovereignty of any government over all its territories is the best way to prevent terrorist and anti-security activities," Raeisi said.

After over a decade of severed ties between Turkey and Syria, the two neighboring countries are taking steps toward reconciliation.

Turkey deployed forces in Syria in October 2019 in violation of the Arab country’s territorial integrity.

Thousands have been killed during the three-decade conflict between Turkey and the autonomy-seeking militant group.

Ankara-backed militants were deployed to northeastern Syria after Turkish military forces launched a long-threatened cross-border invasion in a declared attempt to push militants of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) away from border areas.

Ankara views the US-backed YPG as a terrorist organization tied to the homegrown Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been seeking an autonomous Kurdish region in Turkey since 1984.

Pointing to the cultural and historical commonalities between Iran and Turkey, Raeisi expressed hope that the two countries would improve cooperation during the new presidential term of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

He said the joint economic committee between Iran and Turkey would play an effective role in paving the way for increasing commercial interactions between the two countries.

The Iranian president emphasized the importance of effectively dealing with the presence of foreign forces in different regions, including the Caucasus, and said all states in every region should solve their problems through dialogue and cooperation.

Fidan, for his part, said Iran and Turkey have great capacities to expand cooperation and are capable of reaching a $30-billion target set for their annual trade.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, the top Turkish diplomat arrived in Tehran on Sunday and attended a joint press conference with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.


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Iran’s ambassador meets FM before departing for Saudi Arabia

04 September 2023

Iran’s ambassador to Riyadh has met with Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian before departing for Saudi Arabia.

During the meeting on Saturday, Alireza Enayati presented a report on plans for bilateral ties between the two countries.

Amir-Abdollahian, for his part, emphasized the need for developing and deepening the administration’s good-neighborliness policy.

He also attached importance to the strengthening of Tehran-Riyadh ties given the cooperation opportunities in bilateral and multilateral fields.

Enayati had previously served as Iran’s deputy ambassador to Riyadh and ambassador to Kuwait, as well as an aide to the foreign minister and director-general of Persian Gulf affairs at the Foreign Ministry.

Back in March, Iran and Saudi Arabia agreed to a Chinese-brokered deal to revive relations after years of tensions.

Iran officially reopened its embassy in Riyadh in June, followed by its consulate in Jeddah and representative office with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

The Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate in Mashhad have also resumed operations.

Last month, Amir-Abdollahian visited Saudi Arabia, where he held “frank and fruitful” talks with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

In Jeddah, Foreign Minister Amir-Abdollahian and Crown Prince bin Salman held "direct" talks.

In an interview with Shargh newspaper published on Saturday, Enayati said the Iran-Saudi relations are progressing at a steady pace.

“We are serious, and we feel that Saudi Arabia is also serious in developing ties and deepening relations,” he said.

“We are now seeing new conditions where the countries of the region are no longer just located on either side of the Persian Gulf but are playing a role in a joint effort, which could see security find a new definition and move away from its classical definition which was based on militarism.”


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Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; Iranian genius in Golden Age of Islam

Sep 4, 2023

TEHRAN, Sep. 04 (MNA) – Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni, the Iranian scholar and the 10th-century Islamic mathematical genius has inspired scientists and mathematicians for several centuries, and his name continues to command respect even today.

Little is known of the early life of the Iranian scholar and polymath Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; however, as the name suggests he was born in Beruniy, a small city in Uzbekistan in Western Central Asia which was part of Iran in the past.

Historically, Beruniy was known as Kath and served as the capital of Khwarazm. It is located on the northern bank of the Amu Darya near Uzbekistan's border with Turkmenistan.

Khwarazm is a large oasis region that was the center of the Iranian Khwarazmian civilization, and a series of kingdoms such as the Khwarazmian dynasty and the Afrighid dynasty.

Today Khwarazm belongs partly to Uzbekistan and partly to Turkmenistan.

In 1957, Kath was renamed "Beruniy" in honor of the medieval scholar and polymath Al-Biruni who was born and raised in the town in 973 and died c. 1052, in Ghazna, Afghanistan.

Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni has been variously considered the "Founder of Indology", "Father of Comparative Religion", "Father of modern geodesy", and the first anthropologist.

Al-Biruni spent the first twenty-five years of his life in Khwarezm where he studied Islamic jurisprudence, theology, grammar, mathematics, astronomy, medicine, and philosophy and dabbled not only in the field of physics but also in those most of the other sciences.

Al-Biruni left Khwarazm at young age

At a young age, Al-Biruni left his hometown for Bukhara, then under the Samanid ruler Mansur II the son of Nuh. and he wandered around Iran and Uzbekistan.

Then, after Mahmud of Ghazni, or Mahmud Ghaznavi conquered the emirate of Bukhara, he moved to Ghazni, a town in today’s Afghanistan, which served as the capital of the Ghaznavid dynasty.

Al-Biruni is most commonly known for his close association with Mahmud Ghaznavi, and his son Sultan Masood.

In 1017,  most scholars from different parts of then Iran, including Al-Biruni, were taken to Ghazni, the capital of the Ghaznavid dynasty. Al-Biruni was made court astrologer and accompanied Mahmud on his invasions into India, living there for a few years.

He was forty-four years old when he went on the journey with Mahmud of Ghazni. Al-Biruni became acquainted with all things related to India. During this time he wrote his study of India, finishing it around 1030. Along with his writing, Al-Biruni also made sure to extend his study to science while on expeditions.

Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; Iranian genius in Golden Age of Islam

He sought to find a method to measure the height of the sun and created a makeshift quadrant for that purpose. Al-Biruni was able to make much progress in his study over the frequent travels that he went on throughout the lands of India.

Al-Biruni traveled to many places in India for over 20 years and studied Hindu philosophy, Mathematics, Geography, and religion from the Pundits. In return, he taught them Greek and Muslim sciences and philosophy.

He never exploited his work as a means to achieve fame, authority, or material gains. When Sultan Masood sent him three camel-loads of silver coins in appreciation of his encyclopedic work “Al-Qanoon al-Masoodi,” (The Mas’udi Canon), Al-Biruni politely returned the royal gift saying, “I serve knowledge for the sake of knowledge and not for money.”

Al-Biruni inspired many scientists, mathematicians for several centuries

Calculating the radius of the earth over a thousand years ago required a lot of imagination. It was Abu Reyhan Al-Biruni, the 10th-century Islamic mathematical genius, who combined trigonometry and algebra to achieve this very numerical feat.

Biruni’s scholarly legacy has inspired scientists and mathematicians for several centuries, and his name continues to command respect even today.

In 1975, the famous Tajik academician and historian, Bobojon Gafurov, described Al-Biruni in his UNESCO Courier article as a universal genius who “was so far ahead of his time that his most brilliant discoveries seemed incomprehensible to most of the scholars of his days”. George Sarton, the founder of the History of Science discipline, named the 11th century as the Al-Biruni Age.

Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; Iranian genius in Golden Age of Islam

Al-Biruni statue; Persian Scholars pavilion in Vienna UN headquarters

Scholars like Al-Biruni were born at a time when much of the world’s scientific and mathematical knowledge was translated into Arabic. By the time he came of age, he was also introduced to concepts developed by scholars from different civilizations and centuries.

From the scientific literature of the Babylonians to those of the Romans, to ancient Indian texts on astrology, Al-Biruni learned from it all. Like other Muslim scholars from the Golden Age of Islam, he was also hungry for knowledge.

Al-Biruni's works

Most of the works of Al-Biruni are in Arabic although he seemingly wrote the Kitab al-Tafhim in both Farsi and Arabic, showing his mastery over both languages.

Al-Biruni's catalogue of his own literary production up to his 65th lunar/63rd solar year (the end of 427/1036) lists 103 titles divided into 12 categories: astronomy, mathematical geography, mathematics, astrological aspects and transits, astronomical instruments, chronology, comets, an untitled category, astrology, anecdotes, religion, and books he no longer possesses.

Abu Rayhan Al-Biruni; Iranian genius in Golden Age of Islam

The following is the list of Al-Biruni books:

A Critical Study of What India Says, Whether Accepted by Reason (Compendium of India's religion and philosophy.)

Book of Instruction in the Elements of the Art of Astrology in Farsi

The Remaining Signs of Past Centuries (A comparative study of calendars of cultures and civilizations, (including several chapters on Christian cults)with mathematical, astronomical, and historical information.)

Melkite Calendar, or Les Fetes des Melchites (Arabic text with French translation extract from The Remaining Signs of Past Centuries)

The Mas'udi Law (Encyclopedia of astronomy, geography, and engineering, dedicated to Mas'ud, son of Mahmud of Ghazni of the eponymous title.)

Understanding Astrology (Question and Answer style book about mathematics and astronomy, in Arabic and Farsi.


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Explosion at coal mine in Iran’s north kills 6: media

September 04, 2023

Tehran: An explosion at a coal mine in northern Iran has killed six workers, state media reported on Monday.

The blast took place in a tunnel at a depth of 400 meters (440 yards) in the northern city of Damghan, said the official IRNA news agency. It was not immediately clear what caused the explosion.

“Six miners were trapped underground on Sunday when the coal mine explosion took place in Damghan,” IRNA said.

Efforts to rescue the miners were unsuccessful but the bodies were recovered Monday morning, it added.

IRNA showed footage of other workers at the site trying to recover the remains of their colleagues’ bodies from under the rubble.

In May 2021, two miners died in a collapse at the same mining site, local media reported at the time.

At Azad Shahr city in northern Iran, in 2017, 43 miners were killed after a coal mine blast, triggering anger toward Iranian authorities.


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Iraqi security forces deploy in Kirkuk after four protesters killed in ethnic clashes

September 03, 2023

SULAIMANIYA: Iraqi security forces deployed in the northern Iraqi oil city of Kirkuk on Sunday to prevent further violence as the death toll in clashes between ethnic groups the previous day rose to four, police and security sources said.

Four protesters were shot dead on Saturday in clashes between ethnic groups in Kirkuk that broke out after days of tensions. Police and medical sources said all four were Kurdish.

Amir Shwani, a spokesperson for Kirkuk police, said in a statement to reporters a curfew had been lifted and vehicles were moving normally in the city on Sunday.

But security forces had deployed additional troops on the streets to “prevent violence and protect civilians,” he said.

The dispute centers on a building in Kirkuk that was once the headquarters for the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) but which the Iraqi army has used a base since 2017.

Iraq’s federal supreme court issued an urgent temporary ruling on Sunday obliging the government to delay procedures regarding the handover of a building in Kirkuk to the KDP, the state news agency reported.

The court ruling halted an order issued by Prime Minister Mohammed Al-Sudani in his capacity as the commander-in-chief of Iraq’s armed forces to hand over the army building to the KDP on September 1, according to a copy of the ruling seen by Reuters.

Sudani in a cabinet meeting held after the court ruling urged political parties in Kirkuk to “steer clear of any potential conflicts, emphasising the need to avoid resorting to violence or clashes that could harm Iraq’s overall stability,” according to a statement from his office.

The ruling could raise tensions amid discussions over the return of the powerful Kurdish party to the city.

Iraqi Kurdish Prime Minister Masrour Barzani condemned the federal court ruling as a “farce,” he posted on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

Military helicopters flew over the city on Sunday, according to four Kirkuk residents who spoke to Reuters by phone.

Shwani confirmed that four protesters had been killed and 15 people were wounded. Residents said police detained several people on Sunday who had participated in the clashes but police refused to comment on any arrests.

Kirkuk, an oil-rich province in northern Iraq along the fault lines between the Kurdish autonomous region and areas controlled by Iraq’s Shiite-dominated central government, has been the focus of some of the country’s worst post-Islamic State violence.

Arab residents and minority groups, who say they suffered under Kurdish rule, have protested the KDP’s return to the city.


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Southeast Asia


Ahmad Zahid confident Johor voters will not be influenced by Muhyiddin's ‘fatwa’

03 Sep 2023

JOHOR BARU, Sept 3 — Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi is confident that voters in Pulai will not be influenced by the “political fatwa” (edict) saying that it is “haram” or sinful to vote for Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate Suhaizan Kayat in the parliamentary by-election on Sept 9.

The Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman believed that Bangsa Johor are more mature and will not be easily fooled by the fatwa issued by Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin during a ceramah at Dataran Utama Kempas here last night.

“I want to ask that person, which Quranic verse, hadith, qiyas or ijma (consensus of scholars) is he referring to? When he was part of the PH 1.0 government, everything was halal, but when they are not aligned with him, he issues a fatwa.

“In my opinion, Bangsa Johor are different from voters in the three states where they are in power. The people of Johor need stability and want elected representatives who can fight for their plight,” he told a press conference after attending a programme at PPR Kempas Permai, Johor Baru here today.

Ahmad Zahid at the same time expressed confidence that the PH-BN alliance would be able to win the by-election for the Pulai parliamentary seat and the Simpang Jeram state seat.

“Each contesting party or candidate must be confident of victory, but we must strive to resolve all the problems faced by the people, no matter how small they are. I am sure Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was here today because he wants to convey a certain message.

“...I’m confident that Johor will remain a fixed deposit for the Unity Government,” he said.

The Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state by-elections are being held following the death of their incumbent Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub, who was also the Minister of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living, on July 23.

The Election Commision has set polling day for both by-elections for Sept 9, with early voting on Sept 5. — Bernama


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I’m open to criticism, but won’t tolerate incitement, slander: Anwar

 04 Sep 2023

JOHOR BARU – The unity government will not tolerate any attempts to incite the people to cause division among the races, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

Anwar said he was not afraid and was open to criticism, but inciting the public to create conflict in the country’s multiracial society was not acceptable.

“I do not agree that the Sedition Act should be used against those who criticise the prime minister and the government, but we will not tolerate anyone who tries to incite or slander to the point of touching on the 3R (rulers, race, religion) issue... let the police take action.

“You can criticise anything and anyone... but if you use sentiments, incite Malays to hate Chinese, incite people to use religion to accuse others of infidelity... I stress that I will not tolerate it,” he said.

Anwar was speaking at the Madani Unity Mega Ceramah held in conjunction with the Pulai parliamentary by-election at Taman Uda Utama, Perling, last night.

The event was also attended by Amanah president Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu, Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi and the PH candidate for the Pulai parliamentary seat, SuhaizanKaiat.

Anwar, who is also PH chairman, said the people must reject parties that only play up politics of hatred and extremism.

He said they rely on the sentiment that DAP is preventing the unity government from helping the people, especially the Malays, whereas DAP always supports all initiatives for the people regardless of race.

“DAP is with PH, if DAP rejects the federal constitution, we (PH) will fight it (DAP), if it does not accept Islam as the federal religion, we will oppose… but instead they accept,” he said.

Meanwhile, the prime minister said the unity government will continue to govern the country based on the Madani economy to safeguard the welfare of the people even if the initiatives introduced are rejected or belittled by the opposition.

“Because we made these changes (policies and initiatives to help the people), they (the opposition) can’t stand it... they want to say that we (unity government) are not doing our work, when they know we are doing it.

“They can continue to dream of taking over the federal government, at a time when the unity government continues to work to save the country and the people with the Madani economy (framework),”, he said.

The prime minister also assured that unity government would continue to prevail for the full term based on the performance of the economy and the influx of new foreign investment into the country.

He said the success achieved in over eight months since the formation of the unity government was the result of the focus and energy of all parties involved in the government.

The by-elections for the Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state seats are being held following the unexpected vacancies due to the death of the incumbent, Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub, who was also the domestic trade and cost of living minister, on July 23.

The Election Commission has scheduled both by-elections simultaneously, with early voting on September 5, followed by polling day on September 9. – Bernama, September 4, 2023


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PM Anwar questions Muhyiddin's authority to issue fatwa against Pakatan’s Pulai hopeful, calls for an end to such acts

By Ben Tan

04 Sep 2023

JOHOR BARU, Sept 4 — Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s political fatwa against the Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate in the Pulai parliamentary by-election is unacceptable and must be stopped, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said last night.

He was responding to Muhyiddin’s reported remarks on the campaign trail in Kempas yesterday, that voting for the PH candidate SuhaizanKaiat is “haram”.

“I see a problem that was brought up earlier. How can a vote be sinful? What is all this and who are you?

“This can’t go on and we must put an end to this nonsense,” Anwar said during the Ceramah Mega Perpaduan Madani event at Bandar Uda Utama here late last night.

Also present were Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi representing Barisan Nasional (BN), Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) president Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu and Suhaizan.

They were accompanied by other state PH and BN leaders during the event.

At the same event, Mohamad had lashed out at Muhyiddin for issuing the religious edict and attributing it to the latter’s close association with PAS, a component party of PN.

Mohamad said he did not expect such remarks coming from Muhyiddin, a person he used to respect.

“I will rarely hit out at Muhyiddin. However, when he made the political fatwa that it is sinful to vote for the PH candidate, it immediately came to my mind that this is the result of him being friends with PAS.

“We have to be aware that he has started to enter the takfiri phase.

“To all Malaysians, whatever our differences of opinion, let us not label a fellow Muslim out of Islam, or saying this person will be bound for heaven or hell. That is what Allah decides,” Mohamad said in his speech.

Takfiri is an Islamic term referring to a Muslim accusing a fellow Muslim of being an apostate, usually if they are deemed insufficiently religious.

Suhaizan in his speech, said Muhyiddin’s fatwa was dangerous as the latter was abusing Islamic law for politics.

“I don't have a problem if you don't want to support me, but if you use Allah’s law to make it sinful, I feel that it is too much.

“If politicians can use Islamic law by declaring it sinful against their political opponents, I fear that others will follow suit,” he said, adding that it is a very dangerous precedent.

During last Saturday night’s Ceramah Perdana PN in Kempas here, Muhyiddin said the political fatwa against Suhaizan was necessary as a show of protest by Pulai’s voters following the Anwar-led unity government's failure to alleviate the people‘s hardship ever since coming to power nine months ago.

Following that, the former prime minister had received heavy criticism from both PH and BN leaders questioning his right to issue such a religious edict.

BN chairman and Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi demanded that the Pagoh MP name the Islamic law that forbade voters from backing a PH candidate.

BN deputy chairman Datuk Seri Mohamad Hassan called on Muhyiddin to repent, adding that he should not toy with religion.

DAP central executive committee member Sheikh Umar Bagharib Ali, described Muhyiddin’s political fatwa as being extreme and offensive.

The Johor DAP vice-chief said such an edict could breed extremism in the country.

The Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state by-elections are being held following the July 23 death of its incumbent Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub, who was also the domestic trade and cost of living minister.

The Election Commission has set polling day for both by-elections for September 9, with early voting tomorrow.


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Zahid gets discharge not amounting to acquittal in Yayasan Akalbudi trial

By Ida Lim

 04 Sep 2023

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 4 — The High Court today declined to grant a full acquittal to Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi from all 47 charges in his Yayasan Akalbudi trial as asked by the defence.

Trial judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah gave the order for a discharge not amounting to an acquittal (DNAA).after the prosecution said it would not continue the trial against Zahid.

“In the premises, and for the reasons given, this court makes an order for discharge not amounting to acquittal,” the judge said in delivering his decision.

Deputy public prosecutor Datuk Mohd Dusuki Mokhtar had applied for the DNAA when the trial resumed this morning, but the defence led by Datuk Hisyam Teh had pushed the court for a full acquittal instead.

A DNAA means an accused person can face trial for the same charges in the future if the prosecution decides to reinstate them.

After having stood down to deliberate for more than an hour, judge Sequerah then delivered his decision to a packed courtroom where nearly 40 people took up all the seats available in the public gallery.

Throughout the judge’s reading of his judgment, Zahid appeared calm and stoic, while seated in the accused’s dock, and maintained an emotionless expression even to the end of the judgment.

Judge Sequerah noted that the prosecution’s reasons for seeking a DNAA included the reason of the need to further investigate the charges against Zahid and as a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) will be formed on the contents of former attorney general Tan Sri Tommy Thomas’s book.

The judge also noted that Zahid’s lawyers had asked for a full acquittal with their main reason being that the prosecution has not given a timeline for the investigations’ completion and for the setting up of the RCI and the conclusion of the RCI findings.

“It is clear that the reason given by the prosecution that investigations are still ongoing, as a result of representations made by the defence,” the judge said.

Earlier today, Dusuki had explained that further investigations on Zahid’s case had to be carried out, following the representations from Zahid to the attorney general to ask for all 47 charges to be reviewed.

But the judge pointed out that the representations from Zahid involved hundreds of pages, saying: “It is therefore justified that the prosecution needs more time to examine these representations which also involves taking statements from various individuals.”

“Numerous other reasons were also given. The reasons given by the learned DPP, including that of the setting up of the RCI, although they do not have a timeline does not in any manner suggest that as far as the charges involved in this case, that that is the end of the matter. The prosecution in my mind has given cogent reasons why they seek DNAA in this case,” the judge said.

The judge also said the facts in Zahid’s case could be distinguished from or are different from the past court judgments that Hisyam had cited to argue for a full acquittal on Zahid, adding that those High Court cases also do not bind this High court.

For example, the judge said those past court cases included situations where the prosecution did not state clearly why the accused should be granted a DNAA unlike Zahid’s case where the prosecution listed at least 11 reasons when seeking for a DNAA.

The judge also said a Federal Court case which Hisyam had cited involved a situation where trial had yet to start as no evidence had been presented to court yet.

In contrast, the judge said Zahid’s trial had started on November 18, 2019, with the prosecution having called a total of 99 witnesses and with Zahid’s lawyers having called 15 defence witnesses so far.

Having listed these reasons, the judge then gave a court order for a DNAA on Zahid.

But before concluding the court proceedings, the judge also said it would be a waste of time and public funds if the prosecution later decides not to proceed with the charges.

“Before I adjourn, I wish to place on record that although the powers of the attorney-general — under Article 145(3) of the Federal Constitution and Section 254 of the Criminal Procedure Code to institute and withdraw charges at any time before judgment is passed — is unquestioned, should the prosecution decide in the near future that they will not proceed with any further with the charges, then much precious judicial time would have been wasted and a great amount of taxpayers’ money would also have been wasted,” the judge said at around 11.50am.

The High Court’s decision to grant a DNAA for Zahid’s case follows the prosecution stating that it wishes to temporarily stop prosecuting the case pending further investigations.

This comes after Zahid’s lawyers’ August 24 statement, which had urged Attorney-General Tan Sri Idrus Harun to speed up his decision on Zahid’s application to have all 47 charges reviewed. Idrus’s contract as AG ends tomorrow, with Solicitor General Datuk Ahmad Terrirudin Mohd Salleh to succeed him as AG this Wednesday.

On December 8, 2022 and January 25 this year, Zahid’s lawyers had sent representation letters along with documents numbering over 200 pages to the prosecution to ask the attorney general to review the 47 charges against him.

The defence had claimed that there was “new evidence” in Zahid’s case, and that the investigation against him was “defective” due to the short four-month investigation period because of the alleged haste to charge him.

The defence also claimed that the prosecution against Zahid was political in nature.

Even while speaking to the media at around noon at the court complex, Zahid remained calm and stoic without showing much emotion in both his expression and voice, as he thanked “Allah”, his lawyers and those who had supported him.

Zahid was later seen smiling while leaving the court complex in a white-coloured Lexus vehicle, as photographers from the media took his photographs and amid brief shouts of “Allahu Akbar” from his supporters. A single voice crying “Lawan Tetap Lawan” was also heard just shortly before Zahid went into the car which drove off.

Zahid, who is also Umno president and Barisan Nasional chairman, was facing 47 charges including for the dishonest misappropriation of funds from his charitable foundation Yayasan Akalbudi.

The 47 charges are namely, 12 counts of criminal breach of trust in relation to over RM31 million of Yayasan Akalbudi’s funds, 27 counts of money laundering, and eight counts of bribery charges of over RM21.25 million in alleged bribes.

The 12 counts of criminal breach of trust were in relation to the alleged misappropriation of Yayasan Akalbudi funds, namely RM1.3 million via 43 cheques for his and his wife’s credit card bills; RM107,509.55 via three cheques for vehicle insurance and road tax for 20 privately-owned vehicles; a RM1.3 million cheque to the police’s football association; a RM10 million cheque for a loan to Armada Holdings SdnBhd; RM360,000 via two cheques to political consultancy firm TS Consultancy & Resources; and over RM17.9 million of funds transferred from Yayasan Akalbudi to law firm Lewis & Co.

Yayasan Akalbudi was founded with the purported objectives of receiving and administering funds for the eradication of poverty and enhancing the welfare of the poor.

Zahid’s trial began on November 18, 2019, and about 116 days of hearing have taken place since then.

After 99 prosecution witnesses testified in the trial, the High Court on January 24, 2022 ordered Zahid to enter defence on all 47 charges.

So far, Zahid and 14 other defence witnesses have testified, with his lawyers indicating last month of plans to call another 17 more defence witnesses.

The trial was initially scheduled to continue today.

The other hearing dates scheduled for the trial were September 5 to 7, October 31, November 1, November 17, November 20 to 24, November 27 to 29, December 4 to 7 and December 11 to 15.

Lawyer Chan Yen Hui held a watching brief for the Malaysian Bar.


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Confusion over reason for postponement with police, says Hadi's political secretary

04 Sep 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: There was confusion over the postponement of the recording of Tan Sri Abdul Hadi Awang’s statement by the police, says his political secretary Mohd Syahir Che Sulaiman.

The Bachok MP said that the PAS president was not ill at the time, but had to undergo medical treatment in the morning.

“There has been some confusion on the matter. Abdul Hadi was receiving treatment on the morning of Sept 2 at the Sultanah Nur Zahirah Hospital in Kuala Terrenganu and this led to a delay in reaching Kuala Lumpur to have his statement recorded," he said.

“Due to that, I have informed the police that it would take three to four hours and if it hadn’t been for that this would have been settled on that day itself,” added Mohd Syahir, who said that Abdul Hadi is not avoiding the police.

He said when met at the PAS headquarters on Monday (Sept 4) that Abdul Hadi was being treated with antibiotics at the time and added that the treatment was unscheduled.

Mohd Syahir then said that the police could verify the matter with the hospital and added that he told the police of this at 8am on the day itself.

“The appointment was then missed and I’ve contacted the police at 8am, with the police agreeing to the new date which is today,” he said.

On the photo of Abdul Hadi meeting with other Perikatan Nasional leaders on the same day, he said that that meeting was already part of the original schedule for the day.

At around 12:45pm, the Bukit Aman officer that came to record the statement was seen leaving the party headquarters

Mohd Syahir said that the statement recording process was a smooth affair.

He added that Abdul Hadi would cooperate with the police should a second round of statement taking was needed.

The probe is related to his speech during the Ceramah Perdana Perikatan Nasional in Bakri, Muar, on Aug 26, in which he had allegedly questioned the authority of the Pardons Board.

Police are also investigating the case under Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act for misuse of network facilities.


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Freeze on foreign workers for barber, textile, goldsmith subsectors lifted

Nuradzimmah Daim

September 4, 2023

KUALA LUMPUR: The freeze on the foreign worker intake for the barber, textile and goldsmith subsectors has been lifted.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the matter would be discussed further in the cabinet meeting on Friday.

"While we're looking at bringing in foreign workers, it should be reopened with conditions, maybe approve half the number requested (by the industry).

"We must also look at training locals through TVET so that they could be employed in these sectors as well," he said in his speech when launching the Lestari Niaga programme @ Kuala Lumpur held at Medan Selera Madani, Kompleks Tun Sambanthan.

Human Resources Minister V. Sivakumar when met later said a cabinet memorandum had been prepared and would be presented during the meeting.

He said the subsectors needed about 15,000 foreign workers to address the labour shortage.

About 3,000 employers in the three sectors were affected by the freeze, with most of them are small and medium enterprises (SMEs).


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Swedish police arrest two as riot breaks out at Holy Quran burning protest

September 03, 2023

Swedish police on Sunday arrested two people and detained around 10 people after a violent riot broke out at a protest involving a burning of the Holy Quran, police said.

The protest was organised by Iraqi refugee Salwan Momika, whose protests -- which have included public desecrations of the holy book -- have sparked outrage across the Middle East.

Sunday's protest was held in a square in the southern city of Malmo, which has a large immigrant population, and according to public broadcaster SVT around 200 people had showed up to watch.

"Some onlookers have shown upset feelings, after the organiser burned writings," police said in a statement.

"The mood was at times heated," the statement said, adding that a "violent riot" occurred at 1:45 pm (1145 GMT).

According to police, the event had ended after the organiser left but a group of people remained at the scene.

About 10 people were detained for disturbing the public order and another two were arrested, suspected of violent rioting.

Local media reported that some onlookers threw rocks at Momika, and video from the scene showed some trying to break through the cordon before being stopped by police.

In another video a man could be scene trying to stop the police car that transported Momika from the location by getting in front of it.

Through a series of demonstrations, Momika has sparked anger directed at Sweden and diplomatic tensions between Sweden and several Middle Eastern countries.

The Swedish government has condemned the desecrations of the Holy Quran while noting the country's constitutionally protected freedom of speech and assembly laws.

Iraqi protesters stormed the Swedish embassy in Baghdad twice in July, starting fires within the compound on the second occasion.

Swedish envoys have also been summoned in a slew of Middle Eastern nations.

In mid-August, Sweden's intelligence agency heightened its terror alert level to four on a scale of five, noting that Sweden had "gone from being considered a legitimate target for terrorist attacks to being considered a prioritised target."

Sweden also decided to beef up border controls in early August.

In late August, neighbouring Denmark -- which has also seen a string of public desecrations of the Holy Quran -- said it plans to ban Holy Quran burnings.

Sweden has meanwhile vowed to explore legal means of stopping protests involving the burning of texts in certain circumstances.


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Ukrainian Air Force shoot down 23 of 32 Shahed UAVs launched upon Ukraine



Russian forces have attacked Ukraine with 32 Shahed kamikaze drones, 23 of which have been destroyed, but there have been hits in two oblasts in Ukraine.

Quote: "23 kamikaze drones were destroyed in the south and east. A total of 32 Shaheds were launched, attacking Odesa and Dnipropetrovsk oblasts."

Details: The Ukrainian Air Force specified that on the night of 3-4 September, the Russians bombarded Ukraine with Shahed-136/131 loitering munitions from the southern and southeastern directions (Cape Chauda, Russian-occupied Crimea and Russia's town of Primorsko-Akhtarsk).

The report says fighter aircraft, anti-aircraft missile forces and units of mobile fire groups of the Ukrainian Defence Forces were engaged to destroy the Russian UAVs.


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Swedish police arrest man trying to prevent another desecration of Qur’an

 03 September 2023

Swedish police have arrested a man who tried to prevent Iraqi refugee Salwan Momika from setting fire to a copy of the Qur’an in yet another act of desecration of the holy Muslim book in the country’s third-largest city of Malmo.

Swedish media said that Momika repeated the sacrilegious act in a square in Malmo during a demonstration he organized on Sunday, where around 200 people showed up to watch, adding that police detained a man who tried to stop him.

“Spectators showed their emotion after the organizer burned the writings,” the police said in a statement.

“The atmosphere was stormy” as “violent riots” broke out in the early afternoon, it added.

According to police, the gathering ended after the organizer left, but a group of people remained at the scene.

Around ten people were arrested for disturbing public order and two others were arrested on suspicion of having participated in violent riots.

Media reports said some spectators threw stones at Momika, while some others tried to break through the cordon before being stopped by police.

Momika has carried out the same actions twice before, outside Stockholm’s main mosque and later outside Iraq’s embassy. The insults to the Muslim holy book were made under the authorization and protection of the Swedish police.

Following the incidents, people in Muslim countries took to the streets in protest against the blasphemous move.

Sweden has already seen its diplomatic relations with several Muslim nations strained over previous protests involving the Qur'an desecrations.

The holy Muslim book has been subject to acts of desecration by extremist elements multiple times in Denmark too.

The sacrilegious acts have ignited the ire of the entire Muslim community across the globe. Several countries have summoned or expelled Swedish and Danish ambassadors.

The Nordic countries have deplored the desecration of the Qur’an but claimed that they cannot prevent it under constitutional laws protecting freedom of speech.


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Germany under fire for violating rights of ethnic minorities in Namibia

04 September 2023

Germany has come under fire from a group of UN experts for breaching the rights of Herero and Nama ethnic minorities in Namibia by excluding them from discussions on making up for the atrocities committed against them under its colonial rule.

The seven UN experts published their correspondences with both countries and pushed Germany to accept responsibility for all of its colonial crimes in Namibia, including mass murders.

They also stated that it was improper for the Herero and Nama ethnic minorities to have been indirectly involved in negotiations through an advisory council. The UN experts recommended that Germany compensate the Herero and Nama minorities directly, rather than via the Namibian government.

This week's program focuses on Germany's genocide in Namibia during its colonial rule. We will then speak about Sudan's humanitarian crisis.


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