New Age Islam
Tue Oct 26 2021, 08:23 PM

Islamic World News ( 17 Sept 2021, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Comment | Comment

Taliban Bans Girls, Half Its Population, From Secondary Education in Afghanistan, Schools to Reopen for Boys Only

New Age Islam News Bureau

18 September 2021

 

 

Taliban have effectively banned girls from secondary education in Afghanistan, by ordering high schools to reopen only for boys.

------

• If US Doesn't Recognise Taliban It Could Escalate Difficulties in the Region Says, Pakistan PM

• India’s National Investigation Agency Has Secured Conviction Of 27 Persons In 31 Cases Of Terror Attacks And Other Crime Inspired By Islamic State Ideology

• Far-Right French Writer Pledges to Ban Muslim Names If Elected President

 

South Asia

• Taliban shootout in palace: Mullah Baradar was attacked, punched by Khalil Haqqani

• 10 million Afghan children need humanitarian assistance to survive: UNICEF

• Taliban allows humanitarian aid be provided to people in Panjshir

• At least two dead, 19 injured in blasts in Afghanistan’s Jalalabad: Health official

--------

Pakistan

• UNHCR urges Pakistan to accept new Afghan refugees

• Pakistan anti-terrorism court sentences five terrorists to five years imprisonment each

• Pakistan exploiting scope of uranium enrichment in Gilgit Baltistan, activists raise concern

• Sexual assault case: Mufti Aziz maintains innocence, files another bail petition

• Leading investors from China, Russia show interest in Pakistan Steel Mills

• Police accused of submitting selected evidence in Noor case

--------

India

• Islamic State trying to spread tentacles through online propaganda: NIA

• Jantar Mantar anti-Muslim slogans: Delhi court denies bail to Sudarshan Vahini president

• BJP MLA alleges migration of Hindus from Rajasthan town, calls it 'land jihad'

• Taliban takeover in Afghanistan in focus at Delhi Police-led conference with intelligence, security agencies

• Afghan govt not inclusive, don’t rush into recognising it, says PM Modi

--------

Europe

• France to be 'especially careful' about Taliban's links with terror groups: Macron

• UN extends Afghanistan mission mandate for six months

• Another Dutch minister resigns over Afghan refugee issue

• US' Nancy Pelosi warns UK not to endanger Good Friday Agreement

--------

North America

• Pentagon Apologises After Admitting Drone Strike in Kabul Killed 10 Civilians

• Taliban shootout in palace sidelines leader who dealt with US: Sources

• Plane carrying 170, including US, European citizens, departs Kabul for Doha

• No plans for US, Iran to meet at UN next week: US envoy

• US, Turkey discuss 'strength of' ties, 'opportunities' ahead: State Dept.

--------

Arab World

• Former ISIS Stronghold, Mosul, Sees Church Receive New Bell to The Cheers Of Iraqi Christians

• Six months on Lebanon’s south coast oil spill cleanup nears completion

• UAE rejects European Parliament resolution on human rights as ‘incorrect’

• Iran’s fuel shipments violate Lebanon’s sovereignty: PM Mikati

• Saudi Crown Prince, Qatari emir and top UAE security official meet in Red Sea

• RPG fired by Hezbollah supporter lands inside nearby residence

• WHO director: Lebanon’s brain drain threat to health sector

• Syrian refugee pleads guilty in church bomb plot

--------

Southeast Asia

• RUU355 is prelude to Taliban country, says ex-Sabah think tank head

• Penang allows congregational prayers based on mosque capacity, says state Islamic Dept chief

• Encroachment on minorities’ constitutional rights will nullify Pakatan MoU with govt, says Guan Eng

--------

Mideast

• President Rayeesi Describes Destruction, Poverty As Only Result of US 20-Year-Long Occupation of Afghanistan

• President Rayeesi: Iran Supporting Multilateralism to Resolve Regional, Global Issues

• Rayeesi: Iran Welcomes Investors

• Spokesman: Iran to Further Broaden Ties with Neighbours after SCO Membership

• Iranian President Awarded Honorary Doctorate in Tajikistan

• Iran Urges Prosecution of US, Allies for Imposing Extraterritorial Sanctions

• Nine men executed by Houthi’s in Yemen for involvement in Samad death

• Iran joins expanding central Asian security body led by Russia, China

• Israeli FM to visit Bahrain in first after diplomatic accord

• Yemen's Houthis execute nine men for involvement in Samad death

• Spoons become a new symbol of Palestinian ‘freedom’

--------

Africa

• UN concerned about detained migrants vanishing in Libya

• Bandits kill Miyetti Allah leader in Kaduna

• Morocco education ministry denies removing Islamic studies from exams after online uproar

• Somali president slammed for clipping premier's powers

• Ex-Algerian leader Bouteflika, ousted amid protests, dies

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL:  https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/taliban-girls-afghanistan-school/d/125388

--------

 Taliban Bans Girls, Half Its Population, From Secondary Education in Afghanistan, Schools to Reopen for Boys Only

Sep 18, 2021

 

Taliban have effectively banned girls from secondary education in Afghanistan, by ordering high schools to reopen only for boys.

------

NEW DELHI: The Taliban have effectively banned girls from secondary education in Afghanistan, by ordering high schools to reopen only for boys.

The edict makes Afghanistan the only country on earth to bar half its population from getting a secondary education, the Guardian reported.

Girls were not mentioned in Friday's announcement, which means boys will be back at their desks next week after a one-month hiatus, while their sisters will still be stuck at home, the newspaper said in the report.

The Taliban Education Ministry said secondary school classes for boys in grades seven to 12 would resume on Saturday, the start of the Afghan week.

"All male teachers and students should attend their educational institutions," the statement said.

The future of girls and female teachers, stuck at home since the Taliban took control, was not addressed, the Guardian report said.

In a further sign that the recently announced Taliban government is tightening restrictions on women, the former ministry of women's affairs building in Kabul has been handed over to the newly re-established ministry for the prevention of vice and promotion of virtue.

This was the group's feared enforcer in the 1990s, charged with beating women who violated bars on everything from going out in public without a male guardian to an obsessively prescriptive dress code that even forbade high heels, the report said.

The decision on education has worrying echoes of the tactics the Taliban used in the 1990s, when they last ruled Afghanistan, to bar girls from school without issuing a formal prohibition.

Source: Times of India

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/afghanistan-only-nation-on-earth-to-bar-half-its-population-from-secondary-education/articleshow/86314247.cms

--------

If US Doesn't Recognise Taliban It Could Escalate Difficulties in The Region Says, Pakistan PM

Sep 18, 2021

 

 

Source: Zee News/ Image credit Twitter

------

IALAMABAD: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that if the US does not hold talks with the Taliban and take a positive stance on its recognition it could escalate difficulties in the region, local media reported.

Imran Khan, during an interview with a Russian media outlet on Friday, said that Afghanistan is currently the most important issue for the entire region as the country is at a historic crossroads, Pakistan's Dunya News reported on Saturday.

When asked about Pakistan's assistance to the Taliban against the US, he said: "If Pakistan helped Taliban win against the US, it means that Pakistan is stronger than the US and whole of the Europeans and so strong that it has been able to make a lightly armed militia of around 60,000 fighters, beat a well-equipped armed of 3,00,000."

He also said, "The Afghan people consider the war against external forces as jihad and the Taliban have learned a lot in 20 years."

On Wednesday, Imran Khan had said that the US war against terrorism was "disastrous" for Pakistan as Washington used Islamabad like a "hired gun" during their 20-year presence in Afghanistan. "We (Pakistan) were like a hired gun."

"We were supposed to make them (the US) win the war in Afghanistan, which we never could," Khan said in an interview with CNN.

On Monday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken had said that the US would reassess its ties with Pakistan following the military drawdown from Afghanistan.

Blinken told US Congress during a hearing that Pakistan has a "multiplicity of interests some that are in conflict with ours".

Pakistan has had deep ties with the Taliban and other outfits in the region. Moreover, the country has been accused of supporting the group during the US war on terror.

Despite ample evidence presented by the international community, Imran Khan, in the CNN interview, denied charges that Pakistan harbours terrorists and has given them a safe haven.

Source: Times of India

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/pakistan-prime-minister-imran-khan-says-situation-could-worsen-if-us-doesnt-recognise-taliban/articleshow/86313713.cms

--------

India’s National Investigation Agency Has Secured Conviction Of 27 Persons In 31 Cases Of Terror Attacks And Other Crime Inspired By Islamic State Ideology

September 18, 2021

The National Investigation Agency (NIA), the Government’s counter-terrorism organization, today said it had investigated 37 cases of terror attacks, conspiracy, and funding that have been inspired by the Islamic State ideology.

The most recent IS case registered by the NIA was in June this year. A total of 168 accused persons have been arrested in these cases. Chargesheets have been filed in 31 cases, and 27 accused have been convicted after trial.

Investigations by NIA revealed that Islamic State is trying to spread its tentacles in India through continuous propaganda online.

Gullible youth are targeted on open social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Once a person shows interest, he or she is then enticed to communicate with online handlers based abroad, using encrypted social media platforms.

Depending on the gullibility of the person, the handlers then use the person for uploading online content, translating IS texts into the local language, and joining a conspiracy.

The targeted person is involved in the preparation of a module, collection of arms and ammunition, preparation of IEDs, terror funding, and even attacks.

The NIA has appealed that if any such activity is noticed on the Internet, it may be brought to the notice of the authorities. NIA can be contacted at 011-24368800, the counter-agency said

Source: The Statesman

https://www.thestatesman.com/india/nia-secured-conviction-27-persons-31-cases-terror-attacks-crime-inspired-islamic-state-ideology-1503008920.html

--------

Far-right French writer pledges to ban Muslim names if elected president

17 September, 2021

Far-right French political writer Eric Zemmour has said that he would ban Muslim names like Mohammed if he were to be elected as president.

During an appearance on We Are Live to promote his latest book “La France n’a pas encore dit son dernier mot” (France has not yet said its last word), Zemmour said he would ban the name Mohammed “as it is not French”.

It is rumoured that the polemicist will be running for the French presidential race in 2022, but he has said that he will announce it once he decides.

Zemmour has claimed that “[people] are pushing me to be a candidate, as they think that it is I who has the good ideas for France.”

France’s audiovisual regulating body has said that it would limit Zemmour’s airtime as a political commentator on French television channel CNews, arguing that he should not be allowed to use his television appearances to campaign.

Zemmour reportedly received 10% of the vote in an opinion poll this week, while far-right candidate Marine Le Pen dropped to just 19%.

The writer said he “had nothing against Marine Le Pen but everyone knows, and I think she knows, that she cannot win,” while speaking on BFMTV on Wednesday.

Source: The New Arab

https://english.alaraby.co.uk/news/far-right-french-polemicist-moots-ban-muslim-names

--------

 

South Asia

 

Taliban shootout in palace: Mullah Baradar was attacked, punched by Khalil Haqqani

Sep 18, 2021

KABUL: The man the US and its allies hoped would be a moderate voice in Afghanistan’s Taliban government has been sidelined after a dramatic shootout in the presidential palace in Kabul, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the group’s most public face who led peace talks with the US, was physically attacked by a leader of the US terrorist-designated Haqqani Network in early September during talks at the palace over forming the cabinet, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing the incident.

Baradar had pushed for an “inclusive” cabinet that included non-Taliban leaders and ethnic minorities, which would be more acceptable to the rest of the world, the people said. At one point during the meeting, Khalil ul Rahman Haqqani rose from his chair and began punching the Taliban leader.

Their bodyguards entered the fray and opened fire on each other, killing and wounding a number of them, the people said. While Baradar was not injured he has since left the capital and headed to Kandahar -- the group’s base -- to speak with Supreme Leader Haibatullah Akhundzada, effectively the Taliban’s spiritual head.

The cabinet lineup released on September 7 included no one from outside the Taliban, with about 90% of spots going to ethnic Pashtuns from the group. Members of the Haqqani family received four positions, with Sirajuddin Haqqani -- leader of the Haqqani Network who is on the FBI’s most wanted list for terrorism -- becoming acting interior minister. Baradar was named one of two deputy prime ministers. The Taliban and Haqqani groups merged around 2016.

The people said the head of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, who was in Kabul during the discussions, backed the Haqqanis over Baradar, who spent about eight years in a Pakistan prison before the Trump administration facilitated his release to participate in peace talks. The little-known Mullah Mohammad Hassan was chosen as prime minister instead of Baradar because he has better links with Islamabad and isn’t a threat to the Haqqani faction, they said.

The media office of the Pakistan military didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Over the past week, members of the Taliban have rejected reports of a clash. Baradar appeared on state-run television on Thursday to deny rumors he’d been wounded or even killed. Baradar wasn’t present on September 12 to welcome Qatar’s foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, and he missed the Taliban’s first cabinet meeting this week.

“Praise be to God, I am safe and sound,” he said in the brief address. “Another statement made by the media that we have internal disputes is also completely not true.”

He brushed off speculation over his absence during the visit of the Qatari delegation, where other cabinet members including several Haqqanis were present. The Gulf state had hosted Baradar for several years and facilitated negotiations with then Secretary of State Michael Pompeo to end America’s longest war.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/taliban-shootout-in-palace-mullah-baradar-was-attacked-punched-by-khalil-haqqani/articleshow/86312586.cms

--------

10 million Afghan children need humanitarian assistance to survive: UNICEF

Sep 18, 2021

KABUL: The United Nations Child Fund (UNICEF) reported that ten million Afghan children need immediate help as they lack access to sufficient food, medicine and drinking water.According to UNICEF, due to a lack of access to basic needs, many children are malnourished they must lie in hospital beds, reported Tolo News.

"Today in Afghanistan there are nearly 10 million children in urgent need of humanitarian aid. Those least responsible for this crisis are paying the highest price. There are children within communities without access to water because of the drought. There are children missing out on critical vaccines," said Sam Mort, chief of communications for UNICEF in Afghanistan.

Displaced families said that they do not have sufficient funds to feed their children, reported Tolo News.

The displaced families said they cannot afford to provide basic needs for their children. "The children need clothes and food. When there is no food and no clothes, the United Nations should help us," said Shahla, a displaced woman.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/10-million-afghan-children-need-humanitarian-assistance-to-survive-unicef/articleshow/86311376.cms

--------

Taliban allows humanitarian aid be provided to people in Panjshir

18 Sep 2021

The interim cabinet of the Taliban decided humanitarian aid be provided to the people of Panjshir after they took over the province as the very last holdout in Afghanistan.

The decision was taken by the cabinet led by the premier Mullah Muhammad Hassan Akhund.

Provincial officials of the Taliban and people in Panjshir province say that all the routes to the province reopened and telecommunication resumed.

People in the province said they are in a humanitarian crisis and desperately need relief assistance.

They have also said that 90 percent of the residents left Panjshir province after it fell to the Taliban.

Source: Khaama Press

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.khaama.com/taliban-allows-humanitarian-aid-be-provided-to-people-in-panjshir-575757/

--------

At least two dead, 19 injured in blasts in Afghanistan’s Jalalabad: Health official

18 September ,2021

At least two people were killed and 19 more were wounded in separate explosions in the eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad on Saturday, according to a health official and local media.

The attacks, which targeted Taliban vehicles, are the first deadly blasts since the American withdrawal from Afghanistan.

An official from the health department of Nangarhar Province told AFP that three people were killed and 18 were wounded, while several local media reported the attacks left at least two dead and 19 injured.

Jalalabad is the capital of Nangarhar, the heartland of Afghanistan’s Islamic State group, which claimed responsibility for a bloody attack that killed more than 100 people at Kabul airport at the end of August.

The Taliban returned to power in mid-August after toppling the former government, and they have promised to restore peace and security to the country.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/world/2021/09/18/At-least-two-dead-19-injured-in-blasts-in-Afghanistan-s-Jalalabad

--------

 

Pakistan

 

UNHCR urges Pakistan to accept new Afghan refugees

Amin Ahmed

September 18, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, has asked Pakistan to accept the new influx of refugees from Afghanistan, suggesting that if these refugees are sent back due to the lack of documentation, they may be at risk.

He said these refugees might be from minorities or they might have other issues.

Speaking at a news conference on Friday, Mr Grandi said the future was full of uncertainties and risks, but it was important that “we in the international community continue to engage with Taliban in order to go forward and save Afghanistan and the region from disaster”.

He said there had been no major refugee outflow but some Afghans had come to Pakistan, and they might have specific needs.

Says security situation in Afghanistan has improved, but terrorist threat remains

He said he fully understood the position of Pakistan which had so many refugees for the past 40 years.

Mr Grandi said Pakistan was very careful about refugees and wanted to be very cautious to check who was entering the country.

He claimed that the security situation in Afghanistan was improving and UNHCR would be able to scale up humanitarian assistance if the organisation was adequately supported and resourced.

“The security situation has improved, but we remain concerned about the terrorist threat. We hope the new administration is united and that they do not have divisions among themselves. Otherwise, it will be a factor of destabilisation,” he warned.

Mr Grandi said the international community should find ways to support the functioning of Afghanistan state and its institutions.

“If the state ceases to function, it will provoke a crisis much bigger than the humanitarian crisis. UNHCR has not witnessed a large outflow of refugees yet but if the state collapses, a lot of people will seek refuge in other countries. Therefore, it is important to prevent that situation,” he emphasised.

Source: Dawn

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.dawn.com/news/1646942/unhcr-urges-pakistan-to-accept-new-afghan-refugees

--------

Pakistan anti-terrorism court sentences five terrorists to five years imprisonment each

Sep 17, 2021

LAHORE: An anti-terrorism court in Pakistan's Punjab province on Friday handed down five-year imprisonment each to five terrorists, including those belonging to the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

An official of the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) said the convicted terrorists -- Muhammad Aslam, Basharat Khan, Muhammad Ali, Niaz Abbas and Adil Abbas -- were arrested by the CTD early this year from Sargodha and Khushab districts of Punjab.

They were convicted after the prosecution presented evidence and witnesses against them in the ATC.

"The ATC Sargodha has handed down five-year imprisonment each to five terrorists and also ordered confiscation of their properties," the official told PTI.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/pakistan-anti-terrorism-court-sentences-five-terrorists-to-five-years-imprisonment-each/articleshow/86291585.cms

--------

Pakistan exploiting scope of uranium enrichment in Gilgit Baltistan, activists raise concern

Sep 18, 2021

GILGIT BALTISTAN: In violation of international laws, Pakistan has been exploiting the scope of uranium enrichment in Pakistan-occupied Gilgit-Baltistan, confirmed locals and political activists from the occupied region.

Sources in Gilgit Baltistan said a team of Pakistani experts from the Atomic Energy Material Centre (AEMC) had visited the Haider Abad area of Hunza Nagar, Skardu and Ghizer areas of Gilgit Baltistan. They too visited an enrichment site located near the Dargai village in Malakand district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province for uranium exploration.

Earlier, there were reports that Pakistan has given a free hand to Chinese mining companies to plunder natural resources in Gilgit Baltistan. There are reports that over 2,000 leases for mining of gold, uranium and molybdenum have been illegally awarded to Chinese firms by the Pakistan government in occupied Gilgit Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Dr Amjad Ayub Mirza, a political activist and journalist from Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) said, "Chinese geologists along with members on mining corporation were in the Hunza-Nagar district. They were accompanied by a team of Pakistan military geologists. Together they visited mountains in Hunza valley and Nagar which are said to be rich in uranium and other minerals mostly used in nuclear and space technology."

He added, "Certain areas of upper Hunza, like the Chapursan valley were leased by Asif Ali Zardari government out to China. The details of the lease have never been made public. However, these have become no-go areas even for the Pakistan army as the Chinese continue to work on tunnel building and mineral exploration. Chinese miners have also acquired the lease in Astore district to extract high-quality copper".

Dr Mirza told ANI that the company digging uranium in Gilgit Baltistan is Shahzad International, which is considered to be one of the largest lease-owning foreign contractors in the region. "Reports of applying crude methods and indiscriminate blasting techniques are being used for excavation. This is causing extensive environmental damage since Chinese-made, gasoline-powered rock drills both on the surface and underground are being used. This is not only detrimental to the miner's health, but it also causes irreversible ecological damage. Heavy deforestation is also taking place in the area."

Moreover, Pakistan has also been exploring the possibility of uranium mining in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa province.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/pakistan-exploiting-scope-of-uranium-enrichment-in-gilgit-baltistan-activists-raise-concern/articleshow/86312147.cms

--------

Sexual assault case: Mufti Aziz maintains innocence, files another bail petition

Rana Bilal

September 18, 2021

Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam's (JUI) former leader Mufti Azizur Rehman has approached a district and sessions court for the grant of a post-arrest bail, days after a similar petition of his was dismissed by a judicial magistrate.

He is accused of subjecting a student of his madressah to sexual abuse, of which the victim has reportedly presented video evidence. He is currently confined in District Jail, Lahore.

Mufti Aziz's counsel Safdar Shaheen Pirzada, in his petition, has described his client as "an innocent, law abiding citizen" who has been "falsely and maliciously" implicated in the case.

He claimed to himself be the victim of a conspiracy and "madressah politics", as he accused the complainant of being "hands in glove" with his opponents, alleging that the case was hatched "in connivance with police".

The petition described the victim as a "trapper", and questioned why he was still residing at the hostel when he had been expelled from the madressah in 2018.

The petitioner pointed out the aforesaid point in an attempt to "show the hollowness of prosecution case", also calling the plaintiff a "puppet in the hands" of his opponents who, he said, wanted to oust him from the office of Jamia Manzoor ul Islamia.

Mufti Aziz's counsel disputed the occurrence of the allegation by saying that the place where the sexual act is supposed to have taken place is where he "is living with his family including adult sons, and therefore, it is highly unbelievable and unnatural that he would resort to alleged acts at the place where his whole family is residing."

Regarding the video evidence against his client, the counsel argued that such videos "can be created within a couple of minutes".

The petition cited the example of Titanic and other Hollywood movies in which "things are maneuvered and fabricated fictitiously, illegally which has no gensus (sic) with reality".

"Therefore, it would not be impossible to create this sort of video," the petition claimed.

Mufti Aziz's counsel said that nothing was recovered from his client during investigation and "therefore, further incarceration in any manner would not be beneficial for prosecution case."

He further said that his client was also willing to submit a surety to secure bail as he prayed the court for relief and the award of bail until a final verdict is reached in the case.

Source: Dawn

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647040

--------

Leading investors from China, Russia show interest in Pakistan Steel Mills

Amin Ahmed

September 18, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Leading investors’ consortiums from China, South Korea and Russia have showed interest in investing in Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) as roadshows for renowned international and national investors were being held in Islamabad.

The Privatisation Commission which is arranging roadshows since Sept 13, says the revival of Pakistan Steel Mills would be a unique transaction as since its closure various attempts have been made to revive it.

It said this was the first time after 16 years that the Ministry of Privatisation was making unrelenting efforts, and the transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of next year.

The Privatisation Commission says investors’ consortium from South Korea and China held meetings with the team of the commission led by Minister for Privatisation Mohammadmian Soomro on Friday.

Financial and legal advisers and senior officials of the ministry responded to the queries from the potential investors.

Source: Dawn

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.dawn.com/news/1646905/leading-investors-from-china-russia-show-interest-in-pakistan-steel-mills

--------

Police accused of submitting selected evidence in Noor case

Malik Asad

September 18, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The counsel for Zahir Jaffer’s parents Zakir Jaffer and Asmat Adamjee on Friday concluded arguments on their bail petitions in the murder case of Noor Mukadam.

He accused the police of submitting selected evidence saying the police investigation made the case complicated.

Justice Aamer Farooq remarked that it appeared that police did not know how to link clues during interrogation.

The counsel, Khawaja Haris, read out the confessional statement of Zahir Jaffer, the principal accused in the Noor Mukadam murder case, which stated that both entered into a brawl after the latter threatened him that she would file a case and humiliate him.

According to the confessional statement, the counsel said, the accused then called his father and told him that he was getting rid of Noor.

The counsel said this was not included in the initial statement of Zahir Jaffer.

The lawyer also challenged legality of the confessional statement of the accused, arguing that it must have been recorded before a magistrate.

He contended that the police presented selected call details record and there was no evidence of Zakir Jaffer’s connivance in disposing of the dead body. So far, no transcript of the phone conversation has come to light.

Justice Farooq remarked that the transcript of the call conversation could be available when the call was recorded.

Source: Dawn

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.dawn.com/news/1646911/police-accused-of-submitting-selected-evidence-in-noor-case

--------

 

India

 

Jantar Mantar anti-Muslim slogans: Delhi court denies bail to Sudarshan Vahini president

by Anand Mohan J

September 18, 2021

A Delhi court has denied bail to Vinod Sharma, national president of Hindu outfit Sudarshan Vahini, who is accused in the anti-Muslim sloganeering incident at a Jantar Mantar event in August.

Additional Sessions Judge Anil Antil denied bail to Sharma stating that he “may not be the person who was directly delivering those inflammatory/ hatred speeches”, however, he was “instrumental in organising the protest at Jantar Mantar”.

The court held that this was evident from the material placed on record, like banners and posters, on which Sharma’s mobile number and photographs are printed with a call to his supports to join the protest.

“It is difficult to say that there is no prima facie material against the accused to attract the ingredients of Section 153-A IPC (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion),” the court said.

It said his presence “not as a curious onlooker or a bystander, suggests active participation in the object of the assembly.”

The court said it is “necessary to observe that the accused, despite being aware of the intention of the protest rally, organised thereto out of his free will participation and subsequent.”

The lawyer for the accused, Rajat Aneja told the court it is “evident that he has not uttered any hatred or inflammatory words or objectionable slogans against any religion or any other particular section of the society.”

He argued that the “viral video of alleged incident is edited record prepared intentionally and deliberately by the prosecution to falsely book the applicant and other persons.”

“After cooking up a false story to rope the applicant/accused alongwith other members of the different Hindu organisations, a police constable was introduced as a complainant to lodge an FIR with intent to curtail there constitutional right of freedom and liberty, by involving and arresting them in such a false case,” he argued.

Additional Public Prosecutor S K Kain said in the video, “it appears that objectionable slogans and hatred/inflammatory speeches were delivered against the particular community by the accused persons in a very tactful manner under well hatched conspiracy along with chantings of Hanuman Challisa to divert the attention of listeners.”

Source: Indian Express

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/delhi/jantar-mantar-anti-muslim-slogans-case-delhi-court-denies-bail-to-vinod-sharma-sudarshan-vahini/

--------

BJP MLA alleges migration of Hindus from Rajasthan town, calls it 'land jihad'

17th September 2021

JAIPUR: A BJP MLA on Friday alleged in the Rajasthan Assembly that Hindus were forced to migrate from areas in Tonk's Malpura town after Muslims bought properties there, calling it a case of "land jihad".

Malpura MLA Kanhaiya Lal claimed that after buying property at premium rates, Muslims threaten Hindus.

There is a sense of fear and insecurity among Hindu families due to which 600 to 800 of them have migrated, he claimed.

Seeking attention of the House through adjournment motion, the MLA said there is a need to bring a strict law so that Hindus and people from the Jain community are not forced to migrate due to insecurity.

Kanhaiya Lal said Malpura is a sensitive town where over 100 lives have been lost in communal riots since 1950.

Source: New Indian Express

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.newindianexpress.com/nation/2021/sep/17/bjp-mla-alleges-migration-of-hindus-from-rajasthan-town-calls-it-land-jihad-2360178.html

--------

Taliban takeover in Afghanistan in focus at Delhi Police-led conference with intelligence, security agencies

Sep 18, 2021

NEW DELHI: The issue of Taliban takeover was heavily discussed during the conference of various intelligence units and security agencies with Delhi Police at Delhi Police headquarters on Friday, as per sources.

The Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) chief, Intelligence Bureau (IB) chief were among many other officers across top intelligence agencies present at the conference.

As per sources in security agencies, it was discussed that how India needs to be extremely aware and cautious of the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan and the current situation there. Top intelligence officials told that India needs to be extremely cautious of the Taliban and its current form and behaviour as it could emerge as a threat to India with a new strategy.

In this highly sensitive conference, many state officials of Police and Intelligence departments also put forward that Pakistan and its intelligence agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) are trying hard to strengthen their spy network in India. They stated that Pakistan was trying to collect confidential information about India from officials via honey trapping.

The sources said that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir and the challenges in the Union Territory were also a subject of discussion among the attendees. Officials brainstormed on ways to deal with strategies of Pakistan to spread terrorism in India.

A conference was held on Friday between Delhi Police Commissioner Rakesh Asthana along with fourteen intelligence units and security agencies at the Special cell office of police headquarters.

The intelligence agencies are continuously receiving alerts regarding terrorists crossing the border and planning something 'big' in the country.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/taliban-takeover-in-afghanistan-in-focus-at-delhi-police-led-conference-with-intelligence-security-agencies/articleshow/86313270.cms

--------

Afghan govt not inclusive, don’t rush into recognising it, says PM Modi

Sep 17, 2021

NEW DELHI: India finally seemed to have shed some of its ambiguity on Afghanistan with PM Narendra Modi himself calling upon the international community Friday to not rush into recognising the Taliban government saying it was not inclusive and formed without negotiations.

Addressing an Afghanistan outreach session of the SCO-CSTO summit in Dushanbe, as he underlined the significance of efforts to ensure that Afghanistan wasn't used to spread terrorism, Modi called for a code of conduct to check cross-border terrorism and terror-financing and said instability and radicalisation in Afghanistan can encourage "other terrorist groups" to grab power through violent means.

In his first public remarks on Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover of Kabul, Modi backed a central role for the UN on the issue of recognition for the Afghanistan government that hasn’t provided representation to all ethnic groups and has sought to exclude minorities and women.

"The first issue is that the regime change hasn’t been inclusive and has taken place without any negotiation. This raises question marks about the acceptability of the new dispensation," said Modi, adding recent developments in Afghanistan will have the greatest impact on neighboring countries like India.

‘’That’s why it’s essential for the global community to take any decision on recognition for the new dispensation collectively and only after giving it a proper thought," he said.

Modi’s remarks also came in the middle of speculation about an Indian "outreach" to Taliban after the government announced a meeting with a senior Taliban leader in Doha. The Taliban though never publicly acknowledged that meeting with the Indian ambassador. On recognition, India doesn’t see its position as different from that of Russia which, while working closely with Taliban, has said it’s in no hurry to officially recognise the Taliban government and will wait to see if they fulfil their commitment on terrorism and drug-trafficking.

Apart from the legitimacy issue, Modi listed terrorism fuelled by instability and radicalisation, drug-trafficking, illegal weapons and the humanitarian crisis as the top issues that needed to be addressed. He added India was ready to provide humanitarian aid to Afghanistan and also back any regional or global initiative to help the people of Afghanistan.

Modi said instability and radicalisation in Afghanistan will encourage terrorist and extremist forces and called upon SCO member-states to develop, based on a zero-tolerance approach to terrorism, strict and shared norms that serve as a template for global anti-terror cooperation in the future. "These norms should include a code of conduct to check cross-border terrorism and terror-financing activities and also a mechanism for its implementation," said Modi.

Source: Times of India

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/afghan-govt-not-inclusive-dont-rush-into-recognising-it-says-pm-modi/articleshow/86301883.cms

--------

 

Europe

 

France to be 'especially careful' about Taliban's links with terror groups: Macron

Yusuf Özcan  

17.09.2021

PARIS

France will be "especially careful" about the Taliban's relationships with terrorist organizations, President Emmanuel Macron said Thursday.

"This is for our safety," Macron said at a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel before his one-on-one meeting with her at the Elysee Palace.

Noting that they would discuss the international agenda and the situation in Afghanistan, Macron said they would make efforts to support neighboring countries that host Afghans.

Ensuring that people under threat in Afghanistan leave the country and that humanitarian aid is delivered to Afghanistan were also on the meeting’s agenda, he added.

Macron emphasized that he would also discuss the Sahel, Libya, Iran, Ukraine and Belarus with Merkel.

Merkel said the issue in Afghanistan is the people who are under threat and the evacuation of refugees from the country.

Source: Anadolu Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/france-to-be-especially-careful-about-talibans-links-with-terror-groups-macron/2366951

--------

UN extends Afghanistan mission mandate for six months

17 September ,2021

The UN Security Council voted Friday to extend the UN mission in Afghanistan for six months and called on the Taliban to create an inclusive government.

The 15-member council acted in a resolution passed unanimously on the UNAMA political mission, which deals with development issues, among others, not peacekeeping.

The document stressed “the importance of the establishment of an inclusive and representative government,” although Afghanistan’s new rulers have formed a government made up only of Taliban members and no women.

The resolution also calls for “full, equal and meaningful participation of women, and upholding human rights, including for women, children and minorities.”

It was drafted by Estonia and Norway, which welcomed the unanimous passage.

In August a council resolution calling for freedom of movement for Afghans wishing to leave the country after the Taliban takeover won 13 votes, as Russia and China abstained.

The text approved Friday says the UN will continue to play an “important role” in promoting peace and stability in Afghanistan.

Diplomats said the Taliban did not object to the UN mandate being renewed.

“They are obliged to be more flexible,” an Afghanistan specialist at the UN said.

“They are more pragmatic” than they were in the first stint in power in 1990s, the person said. The Taliban then were known to be brutal in their strict enforcement of Islamic law.

“The Taliban need the UN and this is our leverage” to have an influence on their decision making, the specialist told AFP.

The council asked Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to brief it every other month on the situation in Afghanistan until the mandate is due again to expire in March 2022.

It also wants a written report on the future of the mission by January 31.

In recent weeks several NGOs such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have pressed for the UN and its 2,000 staffers in Afghanistan to stay in place to report on human rights abuses.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/UN-extends-Afghanistan-mission-mandate-for-six-months

--------

US' Nancy Pelosi warns UK not to endanger Good Friday Agreement

Ahmet Gurhan Kartal  

17.09.2021

LONDON

US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned the UK on Friday that a possible US-UK trade deal will be jeopardized if disagreements with the EU, which threatens peace in Northern Ireland, are not eliminated.

Pelosi’s remarks came during her visit to London, where she met with Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Following the meeting, Pelosi said: "Respectful of the will of the British people and Brexit, I reiterated the strong bipartisan support that the Good Friday Accords continue to enjoy in the United States Congress and our hope that the ongoing negotiations will yield a positive outcome that recognizes this landmark agreement."

Previously, US President Joe Biden has repeatedly warned that the peace in Northern Ireland should be kept and the Good Friday Agreement must be preserved.

Pelosi also spoke at an event hosted by the think-tank Chatham House in London.

She said a transatlantic trade deal was “very unlikely” if the 1998 Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement was destroyed.

"This is not a threat, it’s a prediction," she said.

"I’m so glad that more time has been given for the negotiations and the discussion because they have to reach an agreement," she added.

Johnson "outlined the U.K.’s concerns with the way the (Northern Ireland) Protocol is being implemented and the impact it is having on the people of Northern Ireland," according to a statement by the prime minister’s office.

Dozens of police officers were injured, public buses and cars were damaged during riots by the loyalist groups in Northern Ireland earlier this year.

The loyalists argue that the Northern Ireland Protocol, which aligns the region with the EU in a bid to avoid a hard border in the island, created a de facto border between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, imposing a border check on goods between Great Britain and the region.

In a recent address, Democratic Unionist Party leader Jeffrey Donaldson outlined his willingness to bring down the Stormont (Northern Ireland Assembly) if the protocol is not changed substantially.

Source: Anadolu Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/americas/us-nancy-pelosi-warns-uk-not-to-endanger-good-friday-agreement/2367545

--------

 

North America

 

Pentagon apologises after admitting drone strike in Kabul killed 10 civilians

September 18, 2021

WASHINGTON: A drone strike in Kabul last month killed as many as 10 civilians, including seven children, the US military said on Friday, apologising for what it said was a tragic mistake.

The Pentagon had said the Aug 29 strike targeted a suicide bomber of the militant Islamic State group who posed an imminent threat to US-led troops at the airport as they completed the last stages of their withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Even as reports of civilian casualties emerged, the top US general had described the attack as “righteous”.

“At the time of the strike, I was confident that the strike had averted an imminent threat to our forces at the airport,” Marine Corps General Frank McKenzie, the head of US Central Command, had told reporters. “Our investigation now concludes that the strike was a tragic mistake.”

He said he now believed it unlikely that those killed were members of the local Islamic State affiliate or posed a direct threat to US forces. The Pentagon was considering reparations, Gen McKenzie said.

In a statement, Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin said the drone strike had killed a Mr Ahmadi, who worked for a non-profit called Nutrition and Education International.

“We now know that there was no connection between Mr Ahmadi and ISIS-Khorasan, that his activities on that day were completely harmless and not at all related to the imminent threat we believed we faced,” Austin said in the statement.

“We apologise, and we will endeavour to learn from this horrible mistake.”

While it is rare for senior Pentagon officials, including the defence secretary, to apologise personally for civilians killed in military strikes, the US military does put out reports on civilians killed in operations around the world.

Reports had emerged almost immediately that the drone strike had killed civilians, including children.

Source: Dawn

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.dawn.com/news/1646962/pentagon-apologises-after-admitting-drone-strike-in-kabul-killed-10-civilians

--------

Taliban shootout in palace sidelines leader who dealt with US: Sources

17 September ,2021

The man the US and its allies hoped would be a moderate voice in Afghanistan’s Taliban government has been sidelined after a dramatic shootout in the presidential palace in Kabul, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the group’s most public face who led peace talks with the US, was physically attacked by a leader of the US terrorist-designated Haqqani Network in early September during talks at the palace over forming the cabinet, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing the incident.

Baradar had pushed for an “inclusive cabinet that included non-Taliban leaders and ethnic minorities, which would be more acceptable to the rest of the world,” the people said. At one point during the meeting, Khalil ul Rahman Haqqani rose from his chair and began punching the Taliban leader.

Their bodyguards entered the fray and opened fire on each other, killing and wounding a number of them, the people said. While Baradar was not injured he has since left the capital and headed to Kandahar -- the group’s base -- to speak with Supreme Leader Haibatullah Akhundzada, effectively the Taliban’s spiritual head.

The cabinet lineup released on Sept. 7 included no one from outside the Taliban, with about 90% of spots going to ethnic Pashtuns from the group.

Members of the Haqqani family received four positions, with Sirajuddin Haqqani -- leader of the Haqqani Network who is on the FBI’s most wanted list for terrorism -- becoming acting interior minister. Baradar was named one of two deputy prime ministers. The Taliban and Haqqani groups merged around 2016.

The people said the head of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, who was in Kabul during the discussions, backed the Haqqanis over Baradar, who spent about eight years in a Pakistan prison before the Trump administration facilitated his release to participate in peace talks. The little-known Mullah Mohammad Hassan was chosen as prime minister instead of Baradar because he has better links with Islamabad and isn’t a threat to the Haqqani faction, they said.

The media office of the Pakistan military didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Over the past week, members of the Taliban have rejected reports of a clash. Baradar appeared on state-run television on Thursday to deny rumors he’d been wounded or even killed. Baradar wasn’t present on Sept. 12 to welcome Qatar’s foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, and he missed the Taliban’s first cabinet meeting this week.

“Praise be to God, I am safe and sound,” he said in the brief address. “Another statement made by the media that we have internal disputes is also completely not true.”

He brushed off speculation over his absence during the visit of the Qatari delegation, where other cabinet members including several Haqqanis were present. The Gulf state had hosted Baradar for several years and facilitated negotiations with then Secretary of State Michael Pompeo to end America’s longest war.

“I wasn’t aware of the visit of the Qatari foreign minister,” Baradar added. “I was traveling during the Qatari foreign minister’s visit to Kabul, and I could not shorten my trip and return to Kabul.”

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/Taliban-shootout-in-palace-sidelines-leader-who-dealt-with-US-Sources

--------

Plane carrying 170, including US, European citizens, departs Kabul for Doha

17 September ,2021

The third chartered flight bringing civilians from Afghanistan to Qatar since US forces withdrew last month took off on Friday with around 170 passengers on board, including US and European citizens as well as Afghans, a Qatari official said.

The flight landed in the Qatari capital at 1630 GMT (12:30 p.m. EDT), officials said.

Foreign nationals on board include those from Belgium, Britain, Croatia, Germany, the Netherlands and Italy as well as the United States, the official said.

The passengers were transported to Kabul airport in a Qatari convoy after the Gulf Arab state reached a safe-passage agreement with Afghanistan’s new rulers, the Taliban, the official said.

In Doha, the passengers will initially stay in a compound that is hosting Afghans and other evacuees.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/Plane-carrying-170-including-US-European-citizens-departs-Kabul-for-Doha

--------

No plans for US, Iran to meet at UN next week: US envoy

17 September ,2021

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has no plans to meet with his new Iranian counterpart next week at the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations in New York, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said on Friday.

Indirect talks between Iran and the United States in Vienna on reviving a 2015 deal, aimed at curbing Iran’s ability to develop a nuclear weapon, stopped in June. Tehran has said its nuclear program is for peaceful energy purposes only.

Iran’s hardline president, Ebrahim Raisi, took office in August and his Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian is due to travel to New York for the UN General Assembly.

“We have been engaged with the Iranians and in Vienna, and those discussions will continue,” Thomas-Greenfield, told reporters.

“We have not made any direct plans for bilateral meetings while they are here, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t see value in having discussions with the Iranians because we do want to move forward on issues related to the JCPOA,” she said.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/No-plans-for-US-Iran-to-meet-at-UN-next-week-US-envoy

--------

US, Turkey discuss 'strength of' ties, 'opportunities' ahead: State Dept.

Michael Hernandez

17.09.2021

WASHINGTON

Senior US and Turkish diplomats discussed the ongoing "strength of the U.S.-Turkey relationship and opportunities to deepen cooperation," the State Department said on Friday.

Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal met as part of this year's US-Turkey High-Level Political Dialogue.

"Following Deputy Secretary Sherman’s meeting with Deputy Foreign Minister Önal, Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland and the Turkish delegation discussed regional issues, including Afghanistan, Syria, and Libya," State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.

Source: Anadolu Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/americas/us-turkey-discuss-strength-of-ties-opportunities-ahead-state-dept-/2367833

--------

 

Arab World

 

Former ISIS Stronghold, Mosul, Sees Church Receive New Bell To The Cheers Of Iraqi Christians

18 September,2021

A bell was inaugurated at a church in Mosul on Saturday to the cheers of Iraqi Christians, seven years after ISIS overran the northern city.

Dozens of faithful stood by as Father Pios Affas rang the newly installed bell for the first time at the Syriac Christian church of Mar Tuma, an AFP correspondent reported.

It drew applause and ululations from the crowd, before prayers were held.

After seven years of silence, the bell of Mar Tuma rang for the first time on the right bank of Mosul,“ Affas told them.

ISIS swept into Mosul and proclaimed it their capital“ in 2014, before they were driven out three years later by the Iraqi army after months of grueling street fighting.

The return of the Mosul church bell heralds days of hope, and opens the way, God willing, for the return of Christians to their city,“ said Affas.

This is a great day of joy, and I hope the joy will grow even more when not only all the churches and mosques in Mosul are rebuilt, but also the whole city, with its houses and historical sites,“ he told AFP.

The bell weighing 285 kilograms (nearly 630 pounds) was cast in Lebanon with donations from Fraternity in Iraq, a French NGO that helps religious minorities, and transported from Beirut to Mosul by plane and truck.

The church of Mar Tuma, which dates back to the 19th century, was used by the extremists as a prison or a court.

Restoration work is ongoing and its marble floor has been dismantled to be completely redone.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/18/Former-ISIS-stronghold-sees-church-receive-new-bell

--------

Six months on Lebanon’s south coast oil spill cleanup nears completion

18 September ,2021

Six months ago, beaches and seaside communities across the southern coast of Lebanon found themselves flooded with toxic tar and other contaminants, washed ashore following an accident involving an oil tanker travelling through nearby Israeli waters.

Now, thanks to efforts spearheaded by the United Nations Development Program and funded by the German state-owned KfW Development Bank, the ongoing work of clearing away this unwelcome flotsam from the already struggling country’s seaside is finally nearing completion.

“The type of waste oil contamination was basically a tar-like oil residue washing up on the shore in a solid or semi-solid form,” UNDP Program Manager for Energy and Environment in Lebanon, Jihan Seoud, told Al Arabiya English. “The best way to clean those up is manually, so this is how we approached it. We didn’t use heavy machinery or equipment because it didn’t require that.

“We have actually managed to clean up most of the oil spill,” she explained. “We’re finalizing it in the next few weeks. We’re inspecting the final sites now.”

In the immediate aftermath of the spill, huge numbers of local residents and volunteers were quick to appear on the scene, eager to help. However, it quickly became apparent that a more organized approach would be required in order to affect a successful cleanup.

“In general, volunteers can only go a certain length of the way,” said Seoud. “This requires a lot of [time] and a lot of manpower, and there are also certain techniques that need to be used because you [can] end up re-contaminating the same spots. There’s a systematic approach that needs to be done.”

Without proper personal protective equipment and training, both of which the UNDP provides, improperly handling materials contaminated with oil can be potentially harmful to those attempting to remove them, as well as to the environment.

Factors, such as the weather or the time of day must be considered. At higher temperatures, oil residues become more fluid and sticky, making them more difficult to clean off hard surfaces like rocks.

Rather than simply ask for more volunteers however, the UNDP ensure that all of their workers receive payment for their efforts. With over 70 percent of the Lebanese population currently unemployed and the local currency having lost much of its value, this is a welcome bonus for many struggling to find work.

“The program is called ‘Cash for Work’; it’s one of the mechanisms that the German government has been supporting, creating short-term jobs for the local vulnerable people and refugees,” Seoud explained. “It’s a daily rate [with] a minimum wage of $7 (USD) per day.”

Collected oil waste is then transported to the Zahrani Oil Refinery and temporarily stored in UN standard drums, in line with best practice.

With Lebanon’s normally lucrative tourism sector already suffering due to travel restrictions imposed in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, many feared that a compounding ecological disaster polluting coastal waters could push these businesses – and the families they support – to breaking point.

Fortunately, this hasn’t been the case, thanks to quick action from both local residents, and the coordinated efforts of local and international authorities.

“The National Council for Scientific Research (CNRS) did an initial assessment in partnership with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the [Lebanese] Ministry of Environment and the municipalities in the south that were affected,” said Seoud. “They let us know exactly where contamination was and certain areas where it wasn’t easy to find. They were very keen and involved.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/18/Six-months-on-Lebanon-s-south-coast-oil-spill-cleanup-nears-completion

--------

UAE rejects European Parliament resolution on human rights as ‘incorrect’

18 September ,2021

The United Arab Emirates rejected on Friday as “factually incorrect” a resolution passed by the European Parliament criticizing its human rights record and calling for the release of peaceful political activists.

“Every country has its own laws and legal institutions, the UAE constitution and national legislation enshrines fundamental rights which provide for the fair treatment of all citizens and residents,” the Emirati foreign ministry said in a statement.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2021/09/18/UAE-rejects-European-Parliament-resolution-on-human-rights-as-incorrect-

--------

Iran’s fuel shipments violate Lebanon’s sovereignty: PM Mikati

17 September ,2021

Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati said Iranian fuel shipments imported by the Hezbollah movement constitute a breach of Lebanon’s sovereignty, according to comments published by his office.

“The violation of Lebanon’s sovereignty makes me sad,” Mikati told CNN in an interview, his office said in a posting on Twitter.

He added: “But I’m not concerned that sanctions can be imposed” on Lebanon “because the operation was carried out without the involvement of the Lebanese government.”

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/Iran-s-fuel-shipments-violate-Lebanon-s-sovereignty-PM-Mikati

--------

Saudi Crown Prince, Qatari emir and top UAE security official meet in Red Sea

17 September ,2021

Top officials from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates met in the Red Sea Friday, a Saudi official said.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad and UAE National Security Advisor Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed were pictured after having a “cordial” meeting in the Red Sea, tweeted Bader Al Asaker, the director of the Crown Prince’s office.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/gulf/2021/09/17/Saudi-Crown-Prince-Qatari-emir-and-top-UAE-security-official-meet-in-Red-Sea

--------

RPG fired by Hezbollah supporter lands inside nearby residence

17 September ,2021

Hezbollah supporters lining the streets of Lebanon to welcome tanker trucks from Syria filled with Iranian fuel fired rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) into the air, destroying nearby properties.

A video of a man firing an RPG in the middle of a street just inside the Lebanese border with Syria was followed by pictures of where it appeared to land: inside a local residence.

No injuries were reported, but as is often the case in Lebanon, celebratory gunfire leads to injuries and casualties.

The Lebanese government has not condemned the gunfire or firing of RPGs. The government has not commented on the fuel unilaterally imported by Hezbollah from Iran via Syria’s Baniyas.

The Iran-backed group has said the import of badly needed fuel to Lebanon broke the “American siege” on Lebanon, which Hezbollah claims is the reason for Lebanon’s unprecedented financial and economic crisis.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/Watch-RPG-fired-by-Hezbollah-supporter-lands-inside-nearby-residence

--------

WHO director: Lebanon’s brain drain threat to health sector

17 September ,2021

The World Health Organization’s director general on Friday expressed deep concern about the impact of Lebanon’s economic meltdown and multiple crises on the wellbeing of the nation, and said the brain drain among the country’s health workers is particularly worrisome.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus spoke following meetings with senior Lebanese officials and visits to health facilities and practitioners over the past two days. He said the country of 6 million — including over 1 million Syrian refugees — needs emergency and development support to tackle shortages of medicines, fuel, and structural problems such as migration of medical professionals.

For the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

The brain drain is depriving the country, once a medical hub in the region, of essential human resources, he said.

On Friday, Ghebreyesus spoke to reporters at a rebuilt WHO warehouse in Karantina, an area of Beirut devastated by a massive and deadly port explosion last year that further depleted the country’s already struggling health sector. The warehouse, which stored drugs and medical supplies, was destroyed in the blast and rebuilt with donor assistance.

Ghebreyesus noted that the Lebanese are not only struggling with the financial and political crises but also with the impact of the port explosion and the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is heavy. This is very heavy,” he said. “I don’t know if there is any country in such a situation, which is really dire.”

For months, pharmacy shelves have been bare, exacerbated by panic buying and suppliers holding back drugs, hoping to sell them later for higher prices amid plans to remove government subsidies. Hospitals are at a breaking point, barely able to secure diesel to keep generators and life-saving machines operating day to day as the cash-strapped government struggles to import basic materials.

The drug shortages threaten tens of thousands of people, including cancer patients. Medics scramble to find alternatives to medicines that are missing. Reports suggest thousands of doctors and nurses have left the country in the past year for opportunities elsewhere.

“Nurses are leaving, doctors are leaving,” Ghebreyesus said. “That is very serious. Its impact will last for many years to come.”

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/WHO-director-Lebanon-s-brain-drain-threat-to-health-sector

--------

Syrian refugee pleads guilty in church bomb plot

September 18, 2021

PITTSBURGH: A Syrian refugee accused of plotting to bomb a Christian church in Pittsburgh and who was inspired by the Daesh group pleaded guilty to a federal charge on Thursday and awaits sentencing.

Pittsburgh resident Mustafa Mousab Alowemer, 23, entered the plea to attempting to provide material support and resources to the militant extremist organization.

Authorities have said he had detailed plans in 2019 to bomb the Legacy International Worship Center, a small Christian church on the city’s North Side.

Federal prosecutors said at the plea hearing that he talked about potentially planting a second explosive device, timing the detonation to coincide with when first responders would begin to arrive, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported.

Defense attorney Andrew Lipson told the judge that Alowemer did not agree with the prosecution’s allegation that he had plotted a second attack, the paper said.

“That truly was not his intention or desire,” Lipson said.

In a release, the US attorney’s office said Alowemer wanted to inspire other US supporters of the Daesh group to conduct similar actions.

Alowemer gave someone he thought was a fellow Daesh supporter instructions about how to build and use explosives in May 2019, but that person was in fact with the FBI, prosecutors said.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1930891/middle-east

--------

 

Southeast Asia

 

RUU355 is prelude to Taliban country, says ex-Sabah think tank head

Ainaa Aiman

September 18, 2021

PETALING JAYA: A former CEO of a Sabah think tank contends that the passing of the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 amendment bill, better known as RUU355, is the beginning of an Islamic state and implementation of hudud laws.

“If implemented, Malaysia will be like another Taliban country. There is no rationale to introduce new shariah laws as the current ones are sufficient,” said Johan Ariffin Samad, who headed the state-funded Institute for Development Studies two years ago,

“The government should not be messing with anyone’s religion. The bill has been debated extensively and argued by all sides and has in fact divided the nation. There are also concerns that it may affect non-Muslims,” Johan told FMT.

He said that in 2017, civil society leaders in Sabah and Sarawak had protested against the implementation of the increase in punishments proposed under the bill, as they felt there was no rationale for the change.

Johan said the Borneo states firmly believed in the freedom of religion as guaranteed during the formation of Malaysia in 1963.

The RUU355, which is a Private Member’s Bill by PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang, mainly seeks to increase criminal jurisdiction of the shariah courts.

Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob had said in a parliamentary reply on Wednesday that the government will be intensifying efforts to prepare the draft bill for tabling in Parliament after consultations with various state governments.

The proposed amendment bill had caused an outcry with many groups accusing the federal government of seeking to allow the implementation of hudud as part of the Islamic penal code.

Johan said the federal government should not waste its time on “messing” with religion which is a state matter.

“The push to implement RUU355 will cause another round of instability and probably another change in government as Sabah and Sarawak are more than likely to reject it,” he said.

Source: FMT

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2021/09/18/ruu355-is-prelude-to-taliban-country-says-ex-sabah-think-tank-head/?__cf_chl_jschl_tk__=pmd_kBmkbSUa.NGlKSF5JHnIVUsIBLXkrFYWYH5lILH0qQc-1631956617-0-gqNtZGzNApCjcnBszQvR

--------

Penang allows congregational prayers based on mosque capacity, says state Islamic Dept chief

17 Sep 2021

GEORGE TOWN, Sept 17 — Fully vaccinated individuals are allowed to perform congregational obligatory and Friday prayers at mosques and surau throughout the state based on the capacity of the prayer area, beginning tomorrow.

Penang Islamic Religious Affairs Department (JHEAIPP) director Datuk Mohd Zakuan Zakaria said, however, congregants were required to adhere to the prescribed standard operating procedures (SOPs) to curb Covid-19 transmission.

“Those who are partially vaccinated are allowed to perform congregational prayers at mosques and surau according to the previous SOP, namely only 150 congregants for state mosque, kariah mosque (100 people) and surau (50 people).

“Apart from that, mosques or surau management must provide a special prayer area for travellers or e-hailing drivers,” he said in a statement today.

He added that guest khatib was not allowed to deliver the Friday sermon and the call for prayer or Azan would be conducted as per normal practice.

Mohd Zakuan said religious talks should be held on online platforms while the recitation of Surah Yassin and tahlil could be done on the premises only on Friday nights.

He also said that for the time being, any official events, marriage solemnisation or social events were not allowed to be held at mosques or surau in Penang.

“A total of 30 people are allowed to participate in funeral arrangements for non-Covid-19 patients. Visiting of the graves is also allowed,” he added.

Source: Malay Mail

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/09/17/penang-allows-congregational-prayers-based-on-mosque-capacity-says-state-is/2006395

--------

Encroachment on minorities’ constitutional rights will nullify Pakatan MoU with govt, says Guan Eng

18 Sep 2021

BY SYED JAYMAL ZAHIID

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 18 — DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng today warned “racist and extreme groups” within the government against pushing any legislation that encroaches on the constitutional rights of Malaysia’s minority citizens.

The warning came on the back rumours that Islamist members of the government led by Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob are planning to push ahead with a controversial Shariah Bill that some critics said would infringe on the rights of non-Muslim faiths.

“Racist and extremist groups within the government should stop any intention of imposing Shariah laws on non-Muslims or restrict the practice of their religion in accordance with the Federal Constitution,” Lim said in a statement.

He added that Pakatan Harapan (PH) would consider such a move to be a violation of the bilateral memorandum of understanding to halt all political hostilities signed between the government and the Opposition coalition last week.

“Despite the MoU not covering other areas not mentioned, let me state categorically that if fundamental constitutional rights are adversely affected, the MoU would also cease to have effect and be nullified,” Lim said.

The agreement, which some observers called “historic”, mostly touched on the government’s pandemic response.

PH said it would avoid holding any act “that can be construed” as a confidence vote against Ismail Sabri, and will support all efforts to put the country back on the recovery path on the condition that bilateralism takes place in all policy decisions, including for the upcoming Budget.

But Lim said the MoU also covers the protection of fundamental constitutional rights of both Muslims and status of Islam as well as the rights of non-Muslims and freedom of religion to practise their own religion amongst non-Muslims.

Source: Malay Mail

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/09/18/encroachment-on-minorities-constitutional-rights-will-nullify-pakatan-mou-w/2006550

--------

 

Mideast

 

President Rayeesi Describes Destruction, Poverty As Only Result of US 20-Year-Long Occupation of Afghanistan

2021-September-17

“The 20-year presence of American and Western forces in Afghanistan had no result, but destruction, homelessness and massacre of more than 35,000 Afghan children and thousands of men and women,” the Iranian president said in a meeting with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

“The withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan is an historic opportunity for the formation of a popular government in Afghanistan and establishment of peace in this country and the region,” he added.

He pointed out that the key to resolving Afghanistan's problems is to form an all-inclusive government and prevent foreign interference in the country's affairs.

Khan, for his part, said Iran and Pakistan must work closely together to help Afghanistan successfully form an all-inclusive government.

In relevant remarks last week, Iranian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations Majid Takht Ravanchi underlined that the war crimes committed by foreign forces in Afghanistan should not go unpunished.

"Afghanistan is going through a critical period. Hundreds of thousands have fled the country; Nearly 600,000 others have been displaced; Basic food is running out and 18.4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance," Takht Ravanchi said addressing a UN Security Council meeting on Afghanistan.

The Iranian ambassador said that the current situation in Afghanistan is first of all a direct result of the intervention of the US and other foreign powers in Afghanistan and their irresponsible withdrawal.

"When they entered Afghanistan, they brought disaster to the Afghans, and when they left, they left a tragedy for the Afghans," Takht Ravanchi added.

He reiterated that the path to stability, lasting peace and sustainable development in Afghanistan is practically through inter-Afghan negotiations with the active participation of real all ethnic, linguistic and religious groups.

Takht Ravanchi said that Iran also strongly believes that under no circumstances should Afghan territory be used to threaten or attack a country or to shelter or train terrorists, or to plan or finance terrorist activities.

"Terrorist groups such as ISIL, which are a major threat to Afghanistan and the region, should not be allowed to operate in Afghanistan," he added.

The Iranian ambassador pointed out that Afghanistan needs help to overcome its current problems.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000626000342/Presiden-Rayeesi-Describes-Desrcin-Pvery-As-Only-Resl-f-US-20-Year

--------

President Rayeesi: Iran Supporting Multilateralism to Resolve Regional, Global Issues

2021-September-18

President Rayeesi made the remarks in an address to the 21st Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Tajikistan’s capital of Dushanbe on Friday.

“The foreign policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran has always been based on active participation in international organizations, multilateralism and opposition to unilateralism based on justice, cooperation, mutual respect and the need to play a constructive role in facing international and regional challenges,” President Rayeesi said.

He reiterated that the world has entered a new era where hegemony and unilateralism are on the decline, and said, "The international system is changing towards polarization and redistribution of power in favor of independent countries."

The Iranian president, however, warned that challenges such as terrorism, extremism and separatism are currently posing a threat to international peace and security.

“As in the not-so-distant past, Asia is at the center of global change. Maintaining and strengthening peace in this vast area is not a choice but a necessity. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization and its ‘governing spirit’ i.e mutual trust, common interests, equality, mutual consultation, respect for cultural diversity and common development are key tools for maintaining peace in the 21st century," he added.

The Iranian president said that the first challenge is the coronavirus pandemic, which not only targets the health of the nations but also has significant social, economic, political and security consequences.

He also lauded the efforts made by the SCO members, specially China, Russia and India, to help global vaccination, and said, "Any disruption to the process of assisting humans’ health under the pretext of sanctions is against the principles of human rights and amounts to a crime against humanity."

President Rayeesi described sanctions as economic terrorism, and said they are the hegemonic powers' most important tool to impose their own will on others.

“Sanctions or economic terrorism are among key obstacles to promoting regional harmony. The SCO needs to design structures and mechanisms for a collective response to sanctions,” the Iranian president added.

He warned that unilateral sanctions are not limited to one country, but as it has become clear in recent years, they include more independent countries, particularly the SCO member states.

“It is important and necessary to design mechanisms for collective confrontation with unilateral sanctions in the framework of this organization,” the Iranian president said.

He noted that insecurity impedes development and terrorism hinders sustainable economic growth.

"With a history of more than 40 years of relentless confrontation and fight against terrorism and extremism, the Islamic Republic of Iran has rendered worthy services for the realization of peace and justice in West Asia," President Rayeesi pointed out.

“I extend my hand of cooperation to all countries participating in this summit for the realization of peace and alliance in the fight against terrorism and extremism. We need collective action to ensure security and justice as key infrastructures for development and progress,” he added.

The Iranian president concluded that the SCO member countries can use the existing methods to achieve and promote peace and security based on diplomacy and boost comprehensive interaction on the basis of justice and spirituality by relying on their deep-rooted history of civilization.

The SCO officially admitted Iran as a new member of the Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance at its 21st summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, on Friday.

"Perfectly pleased to announce that the permanent membership document of the Islamic Republic of Iran was approved by the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Dushanbe in the presence of our esteemed President," Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian tweeted Friday.

"This strategic membership has an important impact on the process of comprehensive cooperation between Iran in line with the policy of neighborhood with and pivot to Asia," he added.

The 21st edition of Shanghai Cooperation Organization kicked off in Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan on Friday.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000626000538/Presiden-Rayeesi-Iran-Sppring-Mlilaeralism-Reslve-Reginal-Glbal

--------

Rayeesi: Iran Welcomes Investors

2021-September-18

The Iranian president made the remarks in a meeting with Iranans residing in Tajikistan.

President Rayeesi termed Iranians residing in other countries as an opportunity and a valuable capacity for the progress of Iran.

He reiterated that security of investment is guaranteed by the current administration in Iran, and said, "Suitable ground is provided for Iranians in the field of easing and accelerating issuance of investment-related licenses."

Invited by Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon, President Rayeesi arrived in Dushanbe on Thursday to take part in Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Summit.

Ministers of foreign affairs, energy, labor, cultural heritage, and justice accompanied President Rayeesi during the visit.

The SCO officially admitted Iran as a new member of the Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance at its 21st summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, on Friday.

"Perfectly pleased to announce that the permanent membership document of the Islamic Republic of Iran was approved by the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Dushanbe in the presence of our esteemed President," Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian tweeted Friday.

"This strategic membership has an important impact on the process of comprehensive cooperation between Iran in line with the policy of neighborhood with and pivot to Asia," he added.

The 21st edition of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) kicked off in Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan on Fri.

The SCO consists of nine permanent member states, including Iran, India, Kazakhstan, China, Kirgizstan, Pakistan, Russia and Uzbekistan. Three states of Afghanistan, Belarus, and Mongolia are still observer members and six countries of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkeyو and Sri Lanka are dialogue partners.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000626000477/Rayeesi-Iran-Welcmes-Invesrs

--------

Spokesman: Iran to Further Broaden Ties with Neighbors after SCO Membership

2021-September-18

"Warmly welcome the decision of the SCO to approve Iran's full membership," Khatibzadeh wrote on his twitter page on Friday.

"A major step toward enhanced ties with neighbors and an important impetus for our Asia-centered foreign policy," he added.

"We'll continue our efforts to build on indigenous initiatives for the good of the region," Khatibzadeh underlined.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization officially admitted Iran as a new member of the Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance at its 21st summit in Dushanbe on Friday.

"Perfectly pleased to announce that the permanent membership document of the Islamic Republic of Iran was approved by the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Dushanbe in the presence of our esteemed President," Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian tweeted on Friday.

"This strategic membership has an important impact on the process of comprehensive cooperation between Iran in line with the policy of neighborhood with and pivot to Asia," he added.

The 21st edition of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) kicked off in Dushanbe, capital of Tajikistan on Friday.

The SCO consists of nine permanent member states, including Iran, India, Kazakhstan, China, Kirgizstan, Pakistan, Russia and Uzbekistan. Three states of Afghanistan, Belarus, and Mongolia are still observer members and six countries of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia, Nepal, Turkey, and Sri Lanka are dialogue partners.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000627000400/Spkesman-Iran-Frher-Braden-Ties-wih-Neighbrs-afer-SCO-Membership

--------

Iranian President Awarded Honorary Doctorate in Tajikistan

2021-September-18

The honorary doctorate of Tajikistan National University was awarded to President Rayeesi and he was also selected as an honorary member of the faculty of the university.

President Rayeesi visited an exhibition of Tajikistan National University's scientific achievements.

The Tajik National University, the largest and most prestigious university in the country, was established in 1947 and currently has 14 faculties and more than 30,000 students.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) officially admitted Iran as a new member of the Eurasian political, economic, and security alliance at its 21st summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, on Friday.

"Perfectly pleased to announce that the permanent membership document of the Islamic Republic of Iran was approved by the leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Dushanbe in the presence of our esteemed President," Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian tweeted Friday.

"This strategic membership has an important impact on the process of comprehensive cooperation between Iran in line with the policy of neighborhood with and pivot to Asia," he added.

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000627000247/Iranian-Presiden-Awarded-Hnrary-Dcrae-in-Tajikisan

--------

Iran Urges Prosecution of US, Allies for Imposing Extraterritorial Sanctions

2021-September-17

"Sanctions are generally sold to the public on a pack of egregious distortions and falsehood, including the so-called humanitarian exception," Baqayee Hamaneh said addressing the 48th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva,

"It doesn’t exist; even a global health emergency-the global Covid pandemic-could not motivate the United States to show humanity; the extent and layers of UCMs were further toughened during the past 2 years. They even did not spare COVID-19 vaccines nor has the COVAX mechanism been immune from the impacts of sanctions," he said.

Baqayee Hamaneh said that accountability must be a part and parcel of any scheme to address and contain the negative impacts of UCMs on enjoyment of human rights, adding, "It is high time that the United States, as the main culprit, and those European States that have long enforced the US unlawful sanctions against the targeted countries were held to account."

He pointed out that unilateral coercive measures are wrongful acts entailing the international responsibility of the imposing States and the States that act as accomplices by enforcing those measures, and said, "They constitute crime against humanity due to their deliberate and indiscriminate harmful impacts on the innocent people by subjecting them to severe economic hardship amounting to starvation."

"We concur that a coherent approach is needed to comprehensively address different aspects of UCMs and their impacts, including the illegality of extraterritorial application of domestic legislations as well as their human rights and humanitarian implications," he added.

In a relevant remarks in late June, Baqayee Hamaneh lashed out at the anti-Iran report by the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), calling it as politically-motivated.

"The report presented today is based on an entirely political mandate initiated by a group of like-minded, or rather 'similarly-biased', countries that have for long instrumentalized human rights as part and parcel of their adversarial agenda against Iran," Baqayee Hamaneh said, addressing the 47 Session of the Human Rights Council on the Situation of Human Rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

He said that the Islamic Republic of Iran is fully committed to the protection and promotion of human rights, and respects its international obligations. Just yesterday, we submitted Iran`s fourth national report on the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights to the Human Rights Committee. We cannot afford to be dissuaded from consolidating our efforts on promotion and protection of human rights because of unfair pressures and baseless allegations.

We urge all States to uphold the principles of universality, objectivity and non-selectivity in the consideration of human rights issues and the elimination of double standards and politicization.”

We also call upon all who truly care for human rights to recognize the imperative of rule of law and the centrality of judicial systems in preserving the rule of law and protecting human rights," he said.

The Iranian official further noted that the Iranian people have shown maximum resilient against the cruel unilateral coercive measures strategized by Trump regime to put so-called maximum pressure on Iran as part of their obsessive addiction to unilateralism and their hostility toward Iran.

The US continues to carry on with the unlawful and inhuman legacy of the former administration in complete defiance of international law and basic principles of humanity. We should never forget that the US even tightened its unilateral sanctions during the pandemic leaving no doubt as to their true intention to immiserate a whole nation, in bold disrespect to the ICJ's ruling of 3 October 2018 which ordered the US to remove any impediment to export foodstuffs, medicine and medical devices to Iran, he added.

The US and its enablers and those States that have been enforcing its unilateral coercive measures must be held to account for the massive systematic and gross violations of human rights. The United States is allegedly one of the major advocates of this reporting scheme and I leave it to my audience to make their judgment if an imposer of such atrocious unilateral coercive measures can logically claim to care for the human rights of the Iranians?!" Baqayee Hamaneh said.

He went on to say that "the report presented today is based on an entirely political mandate initiated by a group of like-minded, or rather similarly-biased, countries that have for long instrumentalized human rights as part and parcel of their adversarial agenda against Iran. The product of such prejudicial mandate is unavoidably biased toward reinforcing the prejudices.”

Shouldn’t one consider ending this careless vicious circle?!

The report is one of the four yearly reports - all similar in content, theme and tone- originating from a mentality that is far from good faith- compiled inevitably to satisfy the mandate devised by a few Western States to pressurize and demonize Iran,” he added.

Is it really the most efficient and effective way of using the UN scarce budgets and resources to turn human rights agenda into a platform for confrontation and absolutely one-sided attack on a member State?!” Baqayee Hameneh said.

The successive reporting instructed under relevant UNGA resolutions tabled each year by Canada-a country that decided to sever diplomatic relations with Iran more than a decade ago for no good reason and that persists in its policy of denying the huge Iranian diaspora of their basic consular rights- are purposely aimed at antagonizing Iran and generating negative stereotyping, he added.

The question is if and how such flawed mandate that comes from an overblown sense of self-entitlement and lacks any good faith on the part of its main sponsors could possibly contribute to the promotion and protection of human rights other than compiling volumes of documents full of controversial and inaccurate information and false narratives.”

He noted that the patterned methodology used in compiling the reports is impeccably based on over-generalizing individual cases, magnifying negatives, minimizing positives and catastrophizing the whole situation, adding, “I give you just one example. In paragraph 61 of the report it is claimed that the number of homeless people in Tehran is around 700000. This is absolutely false. The compilers of the report didn’t bother to check the original Persian news before rushing to include this ‘favorite’ data in the report."

Baqayee Hamaneh also said that "despite all the misgivings, Iran, as always, didn’t hesitate to try in all good faith to correct a host of disinformation, false claims and unsubstantiated allegations mentioned in the report. We wish that Iran’s responsible and professional approach would have been reciprocated by the report compilers who, instead, opted to ignore the overwhelming majority of our 60-page comment and clarification.”

Source: Fars News Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.farsnews.ir/en/news/14000626000410/Iran-Urges-Prsecin-f-US-Allies-fr-Impsing-Exraerririal-Sancins

--------

Nine men executed by Houthi’s in Yemen for involvement in Samad death

18 September ,2021

Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi movement said on Saturday that authorities had executed nine men

who were convicted of involvement in the 2018 killing of Saleh al-Samad, then the armed group's top civilian leader.

Samad, who held the post of president in the Houthi-controlled administration which runs most of northern Yemen, was killed in April 2018 by a Saudi-led coalition air strike in the port city of Hodeidah on Yemen's west coast.

He was the most senior official to be killed by the coalition in the years-long war in which the Houthis are fighting forces loyal to the internationally-recognized government based in the southern port city of Aden.

The government is backed by a Saudi-led coalition which has received support from Western powers. Saudi Arabia and its mostly Gulf Arab allies allege the Houthis are proxies for their arch-rival Iran, something the group and Tehran deny.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/18/Nine-men-executed-by-Houthi-s-in-Yemen-for-involvement-in-Samad-death

--------

Iran joins expanding central Asian security body led by Russia, China

17 September ,2021

Iran joined a rapidly expanding central Asian security body led by Russia and China on Friday, calling on the countries in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to help it form a mechanism to avert sanctions imposed by the West.

The body, formed in the 2001 as a talking shop for Russia, China and ex-Soviet states in Central Asia, expanded four years ago to include India and Pakistan, with a view to playing a bigger role as counterweight to Western influence in the region.

In a sign of its growing influence, the body’s summit in Tajikistan was the first appearance abroad of Iran’s new hardline president, Ebrahim Raisi, since taking office in August.

Raisi hailed the opportunity that membership would provide for Iran, as a country along China’s “Belt and Road” route, to join important trade links across Eurasia. Iranian television described Iran’s membership as giving it access to huge markets across the continent.

In his speech to members, Raisi compared sanctions on Iran to terrorism, and said the organization should design a mechanism that helps Tehran avert them.

Russia and China, along with Western countries, are parties of a 2015 agreement between Iran and world powers under which Tehran agreed to curbs on its nuclear program in return for the lifting of sanctions.

Source: Al Arabiya

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/17/Iran-joins-expanding-central-Asian-security-body-led-by-Russia-China

--------

Israeli FM to visit Bahrain in first after diplomatic accord

September 17, 2021

JERUSALEM: Israel’s foreign minister said Friday that he will visit Bahrain later this month, the first such visit by an Israeli minister to the Gulf country following a diplomatic agreement reached last year.

Yair Lapid announced the visit in a conference call with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and officials from Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Morocco, which signed US-brokered agreements to normalize relations with Israel last year.

The officials hailed the so-called Abraham Accords, which have led to the opening of embassies, the launch of direct flights and a raft of agreements to boost economic ties. They expressed hope that the new relationships would be deepened and that other nations would follow suit.

“This Abraham Accords club is open to new members,” Lapid said, before announcing that he plans to visit Bahrain by the end of the month. He visited the UAE in June and Morocco in August.

The Biden administration has welcomed the accords brokered by former President Donald Trump’s administration, and has pledged to build on them.

The Palestinians viewed the agreements as a betrayal of their national cause because they further eroded a longstanding Arab consensus that recognition of Israel should be conditioned on progress toward the creation of a Palestinian state.

Blinken, who hosted the video conference, said “we all must build on these relationships and growing normalization to make tangible improvements in the lives of Palestinians and to make progress toward the longstanding goal of advancing a negotiated peace between Israelis and Palestinians.”

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1930666/middle-east

--------

Yemen's Houthis execute nine men for involvement in Samad death

September 18, 2021

DUBAI: The Iran-aligned Houthi movement in Yemen said on Saturday that authorities had executed nine men who were convicted of involvement in the 2018 killing of Saleh al-Samad, then the armed group’s top civilian leader.

Samad, who held the post of president in the Houthi-controlled administration which runs most of northern Yemen, was killed in April 2018 by a Saudi-led coalition air strike in the port city of Hodeidah on Yemen's west coast.

He was the most senior official to be killed by the coalition in the years-long war in which the Houthis are fighting forces loyal to the internationally recognised government based in the southern port city of Aden.

The government is backed by a Saudi-led coalition that has received support from Western powers.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1931051/middle-east

--------

Spoons become a new symbol of Palestinian ‘freedom’

September 18, 2021

JERUSALEM: The humble spoon has taken its place alongside traditional flags and banners as a Palestinian resistance symbol, after prisoners were said to have carried out one of Israel’s most spectacular jail breaks with the utensil.

When the six Palestinian militants escaped through a tunnel on Sept. 6 from the high security Gilboa Prison, social networks shared images of a tunnel at the foot of a sink, and a hole dug outside.

A hashtag, “the miraculous spoon,” suggested how the Hollywood-style feat might have occurred.

But whether or not the utensil had really been involved or its role was cooked up was at first unclear.

Then on Wednesday a lawyer for one of the fugitives who has since been recaptured told AFP that his client, Mahmud Abdullah Ardah, said he had used spoons, plates and even the handle of a kettle to dig the tunnel from his cell.

He began scraping his way out from the northern Israeli institution in December, the lawyer, Roslan MaHajjana, said.

Ardah was one of four fugitives later arrested after the army poured troops into the occupied West Bank as part of a massive manhunt.

All six were accused of plotting or carrying out attacks against Israelis.

Two men remain on the loose following the extremely rare escape. Israel has begun an inquiry into lapses that led to the embarrassing incident, which Palestinians see as a “victory.”

“With determination, vigilance... and cunning, and with a spoon, it was possible to dig a tunnel through which the Palestinians escaped and the enemy was imprisoned,” writer Sari Orabi said on the Arabi 21 website.

Palestinian cartoonist Mohammed Sabaaneh says the escape has served up “black humor” and exposed Israel’s security system to ridicule.

He has made several drawings featuring the utensil, including one titled “The Tunnel of Freedom.”

The issue has also stirred admiration outside the Palestinian territories, where spoons have been carried in demonstrations supporting prisoners detained by Israel.

In Kuwait, the artist Maitham Abdal sculpted a giant hand firmly clasping a spoon — the “spoon of freedom,” as he calls it.

Similarly inspired, Amman-based graphic designer Raed Al-Qatnani symbolically depicted six silhouettes taking a bridge to freedom, represented by a spoon.

For him, it also evokes the numerous hunger strikes undertaken by Palestinian prisoners to protest their incarceration.

In Tulkarem, a city in the West Bank occupied since 1967 by Israel, the escape brought back memories for Ghassan Mahdawi. He and another prisoner escaped from an Israeli prison in 1996 through a tunnel dug using not kitchen implements but nails.

He had been arrested for belonging to an armed group during the first Palestinian intifada, which lasted until the early 1990s.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1930881/middle-east

--------

 

Africa

 

UN concerned about detained migrants vanishing in Libya

September 18, 2021

ON BOARD THE GEO BARENTS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN SEA: A UN migration agency official expressed concerns Friday over the disappearance of thousands of Europe-bound migrants who were intercepted and returned to Libya as more and more desperate people risk their lives trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe.

According to Safa Msehli, a spokeswoman for the International Organization for Migration, the Libyan coast guard, which receives funds from the European Union, intercepted more than 24,000 Europe-bound migrants in the Mediterranean so far this year, including over 800 this week alone.

However, only 6,000 have been accounted for in official detention centers in the North African country, she said. The fate and whereabouts of thousands of other migrants remain unknown, she added.

“We fear that many are ending up in the hands of criminal groups and traffickers, while others are being extorted for release,” Msehli said.

A spokesman for Libya’s Interior Ministry, which oversees the detention centers, did not immediately respond to a request by The Associated Press for comment.

Libya has for years been a hub for African and Middle Eastern migrants fleeing war and poverty in their countries and hoping for a better life in Europe. The oil-rich country plunged into chaos following a NATO-backed uprising that toppled and killed longtime autocrat Muammar Qaddafi in 2011.

Traffickers have exploited the chaos and often pack desperate families into ill-equipped rubber or wooden boats that stall and founder along the perilous Central Mediterranean route. Thousands have drowned along the way. They have been implicated in widespread abuses of migrants, including torture and abduction for ransom.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1930981/world

--------

Bandits kill Miyetti Allah leader in Kaduna

18 September 2021

Bandits invaded the residence of the leader of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) in Lere community in Kaduna State and shot him dead for failing to provide a N20 million ransom they demanded.

The bandits who stormed the MACBAN chairman’s home in Lere local council at about 12:40am, yesterday, led the Fulani leader to a location before killing him.

The Kaduna State chairman of MACBAN, Alhaji Haruna Usman Tugga, announced the development in a statement.

He said: “With deep sorrow and total submission to the Almighty Allah, we regret to announce the death of Alhaji Abubakar Abdullahi popularly known as Dambardi the Chairman MACBAN, Lere Local Government Area Branch.

“The chairman was killed in the early hours of today, 17th September, 2021, at about 2:00am in his town Lere, in Lere Local Government Area of Kaduna State.”

He stated the killers arrived his house around 12:40am, picked him up and demanded N20 million from him, which he said he didn’t have.

“Then they asked him to make sure he raised the money or they will kill him. He took them from his house and went to some butchers houses to borrow some money from them and he raised up to N250,000. Thereafter, they took him along the Saminaka-Mariri- Zange Highway and killed him there.

“We condemn this wanton killing of an innocent and peace loving person who in all his life has been an ambassador of peace and tranquility among the good people of Lere Local Government and beyond.

“We have really lost a leader of high respect who has been assisting our association in promoting harmony and coexistence among our members. We condole his family, the Miyetti Allah of Lere Local Government and the entire MACBAN members in Kaduna State and beyond for this great loss.”

Source: The Guardian Nigeria

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://guardian.ng/news/bandits-kill-miyetti-allah-leader-in-kaduna/

--------

Morocco education ministry denies removing Islamic studies from exams after online uproar

17 September, 2021

Reports that Islamic studies have been removed from national exams in Morocco have prompted the country's education ministry to deny the claims in an official statement.

The ministry responded to news circulated by activists and media reports which claimed that the subject of Islamic education was removed from primary and secondary school exams as part of new procedures coming into effect this academic year.

“The procedures did not include any changes or modifications to the status of the subjects… Including the subject of Islamic education, which has always been a component of the Arabic language test,” a statement clarified.

The rumours caused widespread controversy, with some taking to social media to reject the alleged decision, while others sounded approval.

Source: The New Arab

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://english.alaraby.co.uk/news/morocco-denies-islamic-studies-have-been-removed-exams

--------

Somali president slammed for clipping premier's powers

Magdalene Mukami 

17.09.2021

MOGADISHU, Somalia

Ahead of elections in Somalia, presidential candidates on Friday condemned a move by the president on Thursday to suspend the prime minister’s powers, further deepening a political crisis in the country.

In a joint statement, the presidential candidates said the move by Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed to clip the prime minister's powers is a blatant violation of the Somali constitution.

The candidates said the president “trampled on the country’s constitution and lied about its provisions” when he suspended the powers of the prime minister.

According to the presidency, there were "no working relations between the president and the prime minister."

The presidency said in a statement on Thursday that since the prime minister of Somalia has violated the provisional constitution, the powers of the prime minister and all correspondence related to dismissals or appointments have been frozen until the completion of the country’s elections.

Premier rejects suspension

In response to the presidency on Friday, Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Hussein Roble said the letter issued by the president clearly violates the constitution and falsely misinterprets articles 87 and 90 of the constitution as they do not mention any interference of the president in constitutional powers of the prime minister and his government.”

Roble added that the president violated Article 103 of the provisional constitution that gives the incumbent prime minister and his Cabinet the executive power to continue and carry out routine duties until a new prime minister is sworn in.

Calling the president’s order null and void, Roble said the federal government of Somalia has assured the Somali people and the international community that it is focusing on completing the elections, maintaining security, and safeguarding the governance system so that the country’s leadership is peacefully transferred.

Source: Anadolu Agency

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/somali-president-slammed-for-clipping-premiers-powers/2367263

--------

Ex-Algerian leader Bouteflika, ousted amid protests, dies

September 17, 2021

ALGIERS: Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who ruled Algeria for two decades before resigning in 2019 as huge protests engulfed the country, died on Friday aged 84, public television announced.

The former strongman had left office in April 2019 under pressure from the military, following weeks of demonstrations over his bid to run for a fifth term in office.

After quitting, he had stayed out of the public eye at a residence in western Algiers.

Bouteflika became president of Algeria in 1999 as the former French colony emerged from a decade of civil war that killed nearly 200,000 people.

Dubbed “Boutef” by Algerians, he initially won respect for helping foster peace, notably with an amnesty law that prompted thousands of Islamist fighters to hand in their weapons.

Bouteflika went on to be elected for three more consecutive five-year terms, most recently in 2014.

Journalist Farid Alilat, who has written a biography of Bouteflika, says that at the height of his rule in the early 2000s, the president had “all the levers of power.”

Crucially, he was backed by the army and the intelligence services.

“He became an absolute president,” Alilat told AFP.

Algeria was largely spared the wave of uprisings that swept the Arab world in 2011, with many crediting still-painful memories of the conflict in the 1990s for keeping a lid on tensions.

But Bouteflika’s rule was marked by growing corruption, leaving many Algerians wondering how a country with vast oil wealth could end up with poor infrastructure and high unemployment that pushed many young people overseas.

In his later years, Bouteflika’s ill health started weighing on his credibility as a leader.

Despite suffering a mini-stroke in April 2013 that affected his speech and forced him to use a wheelchair, he decided to seek a fourth mandate despite growing public doubts about his ability to rule.

His bid in 2019 for a fifth term sparked angry protests that soon grew into a mass movement against his regime.

When he lost the backing of the army, he was forced to step down.

The Hirak mass protests continued, with demands for a full overhaul of the ruling system in place since Algeria’s independence from France in 1962.

But while some key Bouteflika-era figures were eventually jailed in corruption cases, including Bouteflika’s powerful brother Said, the long-sought changes did not happen.

Bouteflika’s successor Abdelmadjid Tebboune was elected in late 2019 on record low turnout, with the Hirak calling for a boycott.

Source: Arab News

Please click the following url to read the full text of the original story:

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1930856/middle-east

--------

URL:  https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/taliban-girls-afghanistan-school/d/125388

 

New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

 

Loading..

Loading..