New Age Islam
Wed Oct 20 2021, 03:45 PM

Islamic World News ( 21 Sept 2021, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Comment | Comment

Taliban Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid: No Al-Qaida or Islamic State in Afghanistan

New Age Islam News Bureau

22 September 2021

 

FILE - Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, center, addresses a media conference at the airport in Kabul on Aug. 31, 2021.

------

• Afghanistan Could Descend Into Civil War If the Taliban Failed To Form an Inclusive Government: Imran Khan

• Muslims in India Have Highest Fertility Rate among Major Religious Groups, Total Fertility Rate Declines: Pew Research Centre Report

• Taliban Names Afghan UN Envoy, Asks To Speak To World Leaders

 

South Asia

• Pakistan, China, Russia’s envoys meet Taliban premier, Afghan politicians

• Taliban Bans IPL Broadcast Over Anti-Islam Content, Presence of Women: Reports

• Saarc meet off as Pak insists on Taliban presence, others object

• UN: Taliban want to address General Assembly

• Taliban expand cabinet to include non-Pashtuns, but still no woman

• At least 3 killed in attack on checkpoint in Jalalabad

• Only minister of Ashraf Ghani’s cabinet sacked by Taliban

--------

Pakistan

• Pakistan FM urges Taliban to keep its promises to international community

• FM urges US to go beyond Afghan conflict for better ties

• Afghan Taliban Arrest Officials Who Removed Pakistan's Flag from Aid Truck

• Pakistan Sikh Religious Leadership Held Discussions with Visiting Akal Takht Jathedar On Religious Issues

• UMT Holds Seminar on ‘Inheritance Laws in Islam’

• Bilawal expresses concern over Afghan Taliban and TTP links

--------

India

• Shah Rukh Khan Says ‘Ganpati Bappa Morya’ and Islamists, Wish Death on Him, Fourth Year in a Row

• India: Man Held for Allegedly Uploading Derogatory Videos against Islam on His YouTube

• Muzaffarnagar Conversion Case: UP ATS Arrest Islamic Scholar Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui; Foreign Funding Traced

• BJP Will Rebuild All Temples, Demolished To Construct Mosques: MLA Sangeet Som

• Taliban Takeover Forcing Heroin Surge into India; Assessment Spurred By Two Sizable Seizures of Heroin off The Gujarat Coast

• Turkish president Erdogan again makes reference to Kashmir in UNGA address

• OBC Muslim groups too demand caste based census

--------

 

Europe

• Taliban Names Afghan UN Envoy, Asks To Speak To World Leaders

• German Policewoman Wrote Love Letters To Neo-Nazi Terrorist: Report

• EU Ministers Agree On Bloc’s Approach Toward Afghanistan

• Time running out for nuclear deal, Germany warns Iran

--------

North America

• US President Biden Calls for a ‘Sovereign and Democratic’ State of Palestine

• Biden says US starting ‘era of relentless diplomacy’ after Afghanistan

--------

Arab World

• Imams of Mosques in Al-Anbar under The Pressure Of The Election Candidates: Sharia, Tribalism, And Authority

• Inheritance laws in Egypt needn’t follow strict Islamic law

• Kurdistan’s leaders appreciate the “influential” role of the Union of Islamic Scholars

• Saudi Arabia and the UAE condemn failed coup attempt in Sudan

• Saudi Arabia calls on world powers to prevent Iran from strengthening nuclear capabilities

• Hezbollah threatens Beirut blast probe judge: reports

--------

Mideast

• Anger as US progressive Democrats object to Israel’s Iron Dome funding

• Iran’s president, criticizing US, likens sanctions to ‘war’

• Houthis not willing to make peace, Yemen’s parliament leader tells US envoy

• Iran, Hezbollah planning attacks on US to retaliate for Soleimani slaying: Officials

• Iran says nuclear talks with world powers to resume in a few weeks

• Nearly 80% of Palestinians want President Abbas to quit: Poll

--------

Africa

• Unsure Of Libya’s Upcoming Presidential Elections, Islamists Prefer to Delay Them

• Libya’s eastern-based parliament withdraws confidence from unity government

• Morocco elections: After the Islamists' fall, a stagnant political system remains

• Nigeria: Sheikh Zakzaky condoles with families and survivors of Zaria massacre

• Sudan failed coup plotters were inside, outside of military: PM Hamdok

• Sudan army arrests 21 officers, number of soldiers for attempted coup

--------

Southeast Asia

• Sarawak Party Criticises Putrajaya’s Appeal of Citizenship Ruling

• Pangkor not on domestic travel bubble list as yet to meet some requirements, says Perak exco

• Defence minister: Australia needs to approach Brunei on trilateral partnership between UK, US

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau


URL:    https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/zabihullah-mujahid-al-qaida-islamic-state/d/125414

--------

Taliban Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid: No Al-Qaida or Islamic State in Afghanistan

September 21, 2021

 

FILE - Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, center, addresses a media conference at the airport in Kabul on Aug. 31, 2021.

------

 

ISLAMABAD —  Afghanistan’s Taliban have rejected as “baseless propaganda” American concerns that al-Qaida, or militants linked to the Middle East-based Islamic State terrorist group, maintains a presence in the South Asian country.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid made the assertions at a news conference in Kabul just days after the Islamic State’s regional affiliate, ISIS-K, claimed responsibility for a string of deadly bomb attacks over the weekend targeting Taliban fighters in eastern Nangarhar province.

Mujahid’s remarks also follow recent warnings by U.S. intelligence officials that al-Qaida and Islamic State operatives were making their way back to Afghanistan, emboldened by the Islamist Taliban takeover of the conflict-torn nation five weeks ago.

The Taliban spokesman denounced the bombings in Nangarhar. He said his ruling Islamist group was determined to stem the violence and does not see ISIS-K as a significant threat.

“You will witness for yourself that these will be the last attacks they have carried out and they will not be able to conduct them in the future.”

Mujahid asserted Tuesday that militants operating in Afghanistan in the name of ISIS-K have no ties to those fighting in Syria and Iraq.

“Daesh [Islamic State] has no physical presence here, but it is possible some people who may be our own Afghans have adopted Daesh ideology, which is a phenomenon that is neither popular nor is supported by Afghans,” he said, using an Arabic acronym for the Middle East-based terror outfit.

ISIS-K also claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack at Kabul airport last month that killed 13 U.S. service members and nearly 170 Afghan civilians who had crowded outside the airport gates.

Al-Qaida in Afghanistan

Central Intelligence Agency Deputy Director David Cohen said last week that the U.S. is “already beginning to see some of the indications of some potential movement of al-Qaida to Afghanistan.”

"But it's early days," Cohen told a panel discussion at an intelligence summit outside of Washington. He warned that al-Qaida could reconstitute in as little as a year. "We will obviously keep a very close eye on that.”

But Mujahid denied those assertions.

"These concerns about foreign militants or anyone linked to al-Qaida being present in Afghanistan are misplaced and they are expressed for the sake of propaganda only. We don’t see anyone in Afghanistan who has anything to do with al-Qaida,” said the Taliban spokesman.

“We have given commitment to the world and to America, as well that we will not allow anyone to use Afghan soil to harm or threaten any country. This is a principled position and we strictly stand by it because it is also in the interest of Afghans,” Mujahid added.

Since ousting the U.S.-backed government in Kabul last month, the Taliban have been under pressure to deliver on counterterrorism pledges and renounce ties with al-Qaida, the terrorist group Washington says organized the September 11, 2001, strikes on America from the then -Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.

The attacks provoked the United States and its Western allies to swiftly invade the country and removed the Taliban from power for refusing to hand over the al-Qaida planners.

The Taliban regained power in Kabul after all U.S.-led NATO forces withdrew from Afghanistan, and the government and its military collapsed in the face of increased attacks by the insurgent group.

Male Taliban Cabinet

Mujahid addressed Tuesday’s news conference mainly to announce an expansion in the Taliban’s two-week-old caretaker government, but failed to name any women to the all-male cabinet of about 60 members.

He insisted the Taliban government represented all Afghan ethnicities, saying women will be added to the cabinet at a later stage but did not say when. The spokesman again urged the United Nations, the U.S., the European Union, and other countries, as well as Afghanistan’s neighbors, to recognize the Kabul government.

Also, several key Taliban Cabinet members are blacklisted by the U.S. and U.N., preventing countries from dealing directly with Kabul.

Washington and other countries maintain they will judge the Taliban by their actions, and that recognition of a Taliban-led government would be linked to the treatment of women and minorities, among other concerns.

The demand stems from fears the Taliban may try to reimpose their hardline Islamist rule the group enforced in Afghanistan when it was in control of most of the country from 1996 to 2001. A brutal justice system, the barring of women from work and public life, and girls from receiving an education, marked Taliban rule during that time.

Source: Voa News

https://www.voanews.com/a/taliban-claim-al-qaida-islamic-state-are-not-in-afghanistan/6237589.html

--------

Afghanistan Could Descend Into Civil War If the Taliban Failed To Form an Inclusive Government: Imran Khan

September 22, 2021

 

Imran Khan's government has repeatedly called for the world to engage with the Taliban [File: Saiyna Bashir/Reuters]

-----

KARACHI: Prime Minister Imran Khan has warned that Afghanistan could descend into civil war if the Taliban failed to form an inclusive government.

“If they do not include all the factions, sooner or later they will have a civil war,” he said in an interview with the BBC.

“That would mean an unstable, chaotic Afghanistan and an ideal place for terrorists. That is a worry.”

The prime minister laid out the conditions that would need to be met for Pakistan to formally recognise the new Taliban government.

He called for the new leadership in the neighbouring country to be inclusive and to respect human rights. He reminded the Taliban that Afghanistan should not be used to house terrorists who could threaten Pakistan’s security.

As the Taliban had recently excluded girls from secondary schools with only boys and male teachers allowed to return, PM Khan said he believed that girls would soon be able to attend schools. He said preventing women from acquiring education in Afghanistan would be un-Islamic.

“The statements they have made since they came to power have been very encouraging,” he said. “I think they will allow women to go to schools. The idea that women should not be educated is just not Islamic. It has nothing to do with religion.”

The decision to exclude girls from returning to school last week prompted an international outcry, with a Taliban spokesman later explaining they would return to the classroom “as soon as possible”. But it is not yet clear when girls will be able to return or what form of education will be provided if they do.

When pressed on whether the Taliban would realistically meet the criteria set by Pakistan for formal recognition, PM Khan repeatedly called on the international community to give the group more time. “It’s just too early to say anything,” he said, adding that he expected Afghan women to eventually “assert their rights”.

Prime Minister Khan said Pakistan would make a decision on whether to formally recognise the Taliban government alongside other neighbouring states. “All neighbours will get together and see how they progress,” he said.

“Whether to recognise them or not will be a collective decision.”

Source: Dawn

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647706/pm-sees-civil-war-if-taliban-fail-to-form-inclusive-govt-in-afghanistan

--------

Muslims in India Have Highest Fertility Rate among Major Religious Groups, Total Fertility Rate Declines: Pew Research Centre Report

September 22, 2021

Washington: Muslims in India still have the highest fertility rate among major religious groups, followed by Hindus, while Jains have the lowest fertility rate, a nonpartisan American think tank said in a report on Tuesday, according to which every religious group in the country has seen its fertility fall.

In the latest report on the religious composition of India, Pew Research Centre said that among Indian Muslims, the total fertility rate has declined dramatically, from 4.4 children per woman in 1992 to 2.6 children in 2015.

“Every religious group in the country has seen its fertility fall, including the majority Hindu population and Muslim, Christian, Sikh, Buddhist and Jain minority groups,” it said.

“Muslims still have the highest fertility rate among India’s major religious groups, followed by Hindus at 2.1. Jains have the lowest fertility rate (1.2). The general pattern is largely the same as it was in 1992, when Muslims had the highest fertility rate at 4.4, followed by Hindus at 3.3. But the gaps in childbearing between India’s religious groups are generally much smaller than they used to be,” said the report.

For example, while Muslim women were expected to have an average of 1.1 more children than Hindu women in 1992, the gap had shrunk to 0.5 by 2015, said the report.

“What do these trends mean for India’s religious composition? India’s Muslim population has grown somewhat faster than other religious groups because of fertility differences. But due in part to declining and converging fertility patterns, there have been only modest changes in the overall religious makeup of the population since 1951, when India conducted its first census as an independent nation,” Pew said.

Hindus, it said, made up 79.8 percent of India’s 1.2 billion total inhabitants in the most recent census, conducted in 2011. That is 0.7 percentage points less than in the previous census in 2001, and 4.3 points below the 84.1% recorded in 1951. Meanwhile, the share of Muslims grew from 13.4 percent in 2001 to 14.2 percent in 2011 – up by a total of 4.4 percentage points since 1951, when the census found that Muslims comprised 9.8 percent of India’s population.

Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Jains, who together make up nearly all of the remaining 6 percent of the population, were relatively stable in their shares since the 1951 census, it said. Statistical analysis of census and survey data shows that fertility has been by far the biggest driver of the modest amount of religious change in the decades since Partition, it added.

According to Pew, in India and elsewhere, education is a primary factor in how many children women tend to have. Other prosperity indicators – such as life expectancy and average levels of wealth – also frequently correlate with fertility measures: Women who have better access to schooling, jobs and health care tend to have fewer children, it said.

“Population growth is driven not only by how many children women have but also by the concentration of women of childbearing age. Younger populations have more women entering their prime childbearing years and, as a result, tend to grow faster than older populations,” it said.

“In addition, where people live within India, as well as their history and cultural norms (which are harder to measure), play a role in the choices they make about family matters. In short, people’s religion alone does not determine how many children they will have. Religion is just part of a complicated picture,” Pew said.

Source: Firstpost

https://www.firstpost.com/india/muslims-in-india-have-highest-fertility-rate-among-major-religious-groups-pew-research-center-report-9985601.html

--------

Taliban names Afghan UN envoy, asks to speak to world leaders

21 September ,2021

The Taliban have asked to address world leaders at the United Nations in New York this week and nominated their Doha-based spokesman Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan’s UN ambassador, according to a letter seen by Reuters on Tuesday.

Taliban Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi made the request in a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday. Muttaqi asked to speak during the annual high-level meeting of the General Assembly, which finishes on Monday.

Guterres’ spokesperson, Farhan Haq, confirmed Muttaqi’s letter. The move sets up a showdown with Ghulam Isaczai, the UN ambassador in New York representing Afghanistan’s government ousted last month by the Taliban.

Haq said the rival requests for Afghanistan’s UN seat had been sent to a nine-member credentials committee, whose members include the United States, China and Russia. The committee is unlikely to meet on the issue before Monday, so it is doubtful that the Taliban foreign minister will address the world body.

Eventual UN acceptance of the ambassador of the Taliban would be an important step in the hardline Islamist group’s bid for international recognition, which could help unlock badly needed funds for the cash-strapped Afghan economy.

Guterres has said that the Taliban’s desire for international recognition is the only leverage other countries have to press for inclusive government and respect for rights, particularly for women, in Afghanistan.

The Taliban letter said Isaczai’s mission “is considered over and that he no longer represents Afghanistan,” said Haq.

Until a decision is made by the credentials committee Isaczai will remain in the seat, according to the General Assembly rules. He is currently scheduled to address the final day of the meeting on Sept. 27, but it was not immediately clear if any countries might object in the wake of the Taliban letter.

The committee traditionally meets in October or November to assess the credentials of all UN members before submitting a report for General Assembly approval before the end of the year. The committee and General Assembly usually operate by consensus on credentials, diplomats said.

Others members of the committee are the Bahamas, Bhutan, Chile, Namibia, Sierra Leone and Sweden.

When the Taliban last ruled between 1996 and 2001 the ambassador of the Afghan government they toppled remained the UN representative after the credentials committee deferred its decision on rival claims to the seat.

The decision was postponed “on the understanding that the current representatives of Afghanistan accredited to the United Nations would continue to participate in the work of the General Assembly,” according to the committee report.

Source: Al Arabiya

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/22/Taliban-names-Afghan-UN-envoy-asks-to-speak-to-world-leaders

--------

 

South Asia

 

Pakistan, China, Russia’s envoys meet Taliban premier, Afghan politicians

21 Sep 2021

Special representatives of Russia, China, and Pakistan to Afghanistan met with the Prime Minister of Afghanistan Mullah Muhammad Hassan Akhund in the presidential Palace (Arg) on Tuesday, September 21.

Zamir Kabulov, Yue Xiaoyong, and Sadiq Khan also met former Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah later in the day.

Abdullah Abdullah in a statement said that the special envoys were also accompanied by their respective ambassadors to Kabul and discussed the ongoing situation in Afghanistan.

As per the statement, the special representatives acknowledged and underscored an all-inclusive and a cabinet that is acceptable to all in the country.

“The envoys underscored establishment of peace and stability, moderate politics, respect to rights of women, and equal education rights for all the people in Afghanistan.” Reads the statement.

Source: Khaama Press

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

https://www.khaama.com/pakistan-china-russias-envoys-meet-taliban-premier-afghan-politicians-4634636/

--------

Taliban Bans IPL Broadcast Over Anti-Islam Content, Presence of Women: Reports

September 22, 2021

New Delhi: The Taliban, reports have said, have banned the broadcast of the Indian Premier League in Afghanistan, citing presence of “anti-Islam content,” the fact that women with their hair uncovered will be present in stadiums where matches will be held and that there will be dancing.

Indian Express, in its report, quoted tweets by the former Afghanistan Cricket Board media manager M. Ibrahim Momand and Afghan sports journalist Fawad Aman.

In August, the Taliban had said they would not interfere with the Afghan men’s national cricket team, the country’s biggest sporting success of recent years, or stop the expansion of the flagship Twenty20 league.

Afghanistan Cricket Board head of media operations Hikmat Hassan had told Reuters in August that Afghanistan’s own domestic version of the IPL, the “Shpageeza Cricket League” (SCL), a competition named after the Pashto language word for a six, would be an opportunity for the country to come together.

The fate of much more modest women’s cricket programmes is, of course, unclear.

AFP had reported last week that Afghanistan’s new sports chief had announced that the Taliban will allow 400 sports – but declined to confirm if women can play a single one.

“Please don’t ask more questions about women,” Bashir Ahmad Rustamzai had told AFP.

Source: The Wire

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

https://thewire.in/sport/taliban-bans-ipl-broadcast-over-anti-islam-content-presence-of-women-reports

--------

Saarc meet off as Pak insists on Taliban presence, others object

Sep 22, 2021

NEW YORK: The meeting of the foreign ministers of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc), which was scheduled to be held in New York on the sidelines of the high-level 76th United Nations General Assembly session on Saturday, has been cancelled, according to sources.

The member-states apparently couldn’t agree on Afghanistan’s participation with Pakistan insisting that the Taliban be allowed to represent Afghanistan.

India along with some other members objected to the proposal and due to lack of consensus or concurrence meet has been cancelled. Nepal was to host the meeting.

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/saarc-meet-off-as-pak-insists-on-taliban-presence-others-object/articleshow/86415927.cms

--------

UN: Taliban want to address General Assembly

Sep 22, 2021

UNITED NATIONS: The Taliban, Afghanistan's new rulers for a matter of weeks, are challenging the credentials of their country's former UN ambassador and want to speak at the General Assembly's high-level meeting of world leaders this week, the international body says.

The question now facing UN officials comes just over a month after the Taliban, ejected from Afghanistan by the United States and its allies after 9/11, swept back into power as US forces prepared to withdraw from the country at the end of August.

The Taliban stunned the world by taking territory with surprising speed and little resistance from the US-trained Afghan military. The Western-backed government collapsed on August 15.

UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Secretary-General Antonio Guterres received a communication on September 15 from the currently accredited Afghan Ambassador, Ghulam Isaczai, with the list of Afghanistan's delegation for the assembly's 76th annual session.

Five days later, Guterres received another communication with the letterhead “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” signed by “Ameer Khan Muttaqi” as “Minister of Foreign Affairs,” requesting to participate in the UN gathering of world leaders.

Muttaqi said in the letter that former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani was “ousted” as of August 15 and that countries across the world “no longer recognise him as president,” and therefore Isaczai no longer represents Afghanistan, Dujarric said.

The Taliban said it was nominating a new UN permanent representative, Mohammad Suhail Shaheen, the UN spokesman said. He has been a spokesman for the Taliban during peace negotiations in Qatar.

Senior US State Department officials said they were aware of the Taliban's request — the United States is a member of the UN credentials committee — but they would not predict how that panel might rule.

However, one of the officials said the committee “would take some time to deliberate,” suggesting the Taliban's envoy would not be able to speak at the General Assembly at this session at least during the high-level leaders' week.

In cases of disputes over seats at the United Nations, the General Assembly's nine-member credentials committee must meet to make a decision. Both letters have been sent to the committee after consultations with General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid's office.

The committee's members are the United States, Russia, China, Bahama, Bhutan, Chile, Namibia, Sierra Leone and Sweden.

Afghanistan is scheduled to give the last speech on the final day of the high-level meeting on September 27. It wasn't clear who would speak if the committee met and the Taliban were given Afghanistan's seat.

When the Taliban last ruled from 1996 to 2001, the UN refused to recognise their government and instead gave Afghanistan's seat to the previous, warlord-dominated government of President Burhanuddin Rabbani, who eventually was killed by a suicide bomber in 2011. It was Rabbani's government that brought Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of 9/11, to Afghanistan from Sudan in 1996.

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/un-taliban-want-to-address-general-assembly/articleshow/86415249.cms

--------

Taliban expand cabinet to include non-Pashtuns, but still no woman

Sep 22, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The Taliban expanded its interim cabinet on Tuesday by including new members, all men and several of them from non-Pashtun ethnic groups, in an attempt to satisfy the global community which has been insisting that their government should be inclusive. However, not a single woman has been included in the cabinet so far.

After including 17 new members on Tuesday — which included representatives from the Hazara, Tajik and Uzbek ethnic groups — the strength of the Afghan caretaker government reached 50. In the first phase, Taliban had announced names of 33 ministers on September 7.

Announcing the cabinet expansion at a press conference, Zabihullah Mujahid, deputy minister for information and culture, said he was hopeful that the international community would recognize their government in the near future.

On women’s affairs ministry and girls’ education, Mujahid simply said that the government was working to address women’s demands for work and education. He also hinted that women might be added to the cabinet later. He added that the decision not to allow return of girls in grades six to 12 to schools was temporary.

“We are working to complete the procedures so that girls can resume their education. We will soon announce when they can go to school,” he said.

Mujahid said that there was no reason to withhold recognition of their government. “This is the responsibility of the United Nations to recognise our government. We want to have diplomatic relations with European, Asian and Islamic countries,” he said.

Despite being referred to as a caretaker setup, the Taliban have not yet fixed any duration for it. They have neither disclosed their plan about formation of a permanent government nor said anything about conducting elections in the country in future.

Mujahid also spoke on the country’s critical economic conditions, saying that the domestic revenue was sufficient for fulfilling the basic needs. “We are using all diplomatic channels to unfreeze the Afghan assets,” he said. After the Taliban took over, the US had frozen $9.5 billion assets of the Afghan central bank.

According to figures accumulated by watchdog bodies, more than 150 media outlets have stopped their operations in the last month due to shortage of funds and fear of Taliban policies. Many journalists and broadcasters had left the country after the Taliban toppled the previous government.

The Taliban deputy minister further stated that the Kabul airport’s main radar was badly damaged and international commercial flights will resume after the completion of repair work. He added that helicopters at the Kabul airport were destroyed “by American soldiers”. Recently some Taliban fighters were seen in a viral video swinging on a wing of an abandoned US chopper.

Meanwhile, rights groups have accused the Taliban of “steadily dismantling” human rights in Afghanistan after they took control of the country.

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-expand-cabinet-to-include-non-pashtuns-but-still-no-woman/articleshow/86414721.cms

--------

At least 3 killed in attack on checkpoint in Jalalabad

September 22, 2021

At least three people were killed on Wednesday by gunmen who attacked a checkpoint in eastern Afghanistan, a Taliban official confirmed.

While the Taliban official said all the deceased the civilians, witnesses and a security source told AFP that two of the casualties were Taliban fighters. The latter added that the attack was carried out by unidentified gunmen in a rickshaw and targeted a checkpoint in Ghawchak district of Jalalabad.

The attack in Jalalabad city is the latest on Taliban targets in Nangarhar province, which for years was the main operating base of the Islamic State (IS) group's Afghanistan chapter.

In another incident, local residents told AFP that two Taliban fighters were injured while trying to defuse an improvised explosive device in Jalalabad.

Further details were not immediately available.

Source: Dawn

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

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647781/at-least-3-killed-in-attack-on-checkpoint-in-jalalabad

--------

Only minister of Ashraf Ghani’s cabinet sacked by Taliban

21 Sep 2021

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan sacked the only remaining acting minister of the previous government Waheed Majroh and appointed Qalandar Ebad as acting minister of public health on Tuesday, September 21.

Waheed Majroh was the only minister left from the previous government who was still on his post since the Taliban’s takeover.

The deputy minister of information and culture and spokesperson of the Taliban Zabiullah Mujahid announced two acting ministers of the remaining ministries 9 deputy ministers on Tuesday, September 21.

Noordin Azizi as acting minister of industry and commerce is the second acting minister along with the Ebad.

Source: Khaama Press

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

https://www.khaama.com/only-minister-of-ashraf-ghanis-cabinet-sacked-by-taliban-346346/

--------

 

Pakistan

 

Pakistan FM urges Taliban to keep its promises to international community

September 22, 2021

WASHINGTON: The Taliban should respect international opinion and keep their promises to have an inclusive government and not allow Afghanistan to become a safe haven for terrorist groups, Pakistan’s foreign minister told reporters in New York at a briefing attended by Arab News.

“It would be a positive step for the Taliban to include ethnic Tajik, Uzbek and Hazara groups in their government,” said Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who is attending the 76th session of the UN General Assembly.

The Taliban seem to be more “open-minded” than the last time they were in power in the 1990s, he added, calling for reconciliation and respect for human rights, including women’s rights.

“If the Taliban can demonstrate these objectives, it will be positive (for Afghanistan),” Qureshi said. “We believe that the reconciliation process in Afghanistan can’t be completed without the formation of a united government.”

He said the international community should allow Afghanistan to access its frozen assets abroad in order to alleviate its people’s suffering.

The international community, he added, can help stabilize Afghanistan politically and economically, and create an environment where its people do not have to flee and become refugees in neighboring countries.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1933456/world

--------

FM urges US to go beyond Afghan conflict for better ties

Anwar Iqbal

September 22, 2021

UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan on Tuesday urged the United States to go beyond the Afghan conflict and build a bilateral relationship anchored in trade, investment and people-to-people contacts.

“We want to build a more broad-based and multidimensional relationship. We want to break out of the cyclical pattern that defined Pakistan-US ties in the past,” said Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), New York, where he outlined his vision of this bilateral relationship.

Yet the minister had to confront several questions on Afghanistan, with CFR President Ambassador Richard Haass voicing the concern that often echoes in such gatherings across the US that the Taliban re-established their control over Afghanistan, because “Pakistan provided them sanctuary for 20 years”.

Says Pakistan is in no rush to recognise the Taliban govt

The minister disagreed with the suggestion, saying that “Pakistan has done its bit” in clearing Taliban sanctuaries in the tribal belt, conducting operations even in the so-called no-go areas. “We cleansed them. We cleansed them,” he said. “We fenced the border despite... If you are concerned about sanctuaries, look into Afghanistan,” he added.

Ambassador Haass used the response to pose a counter question: Could the Taliban now use Afghanistan to radicalise Pakistan?

“Depends on how you deal with Afghanistan today,” Mr Qureshi replied urging the world powers not to isolate Kabul’s new rulers. “If the international community disengages, if you do not deal with the immediate humanitarian crisis, if you let the Afghan economy collapse, if you continue freezing the Afghan money, then you will be creating space for those elements that we correctly agreed to fight and defeat,” he said.

Source: Dawn

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

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647691/fm-urges-us-to-go-beyond-afghan-conflict-for-better-ties

--------

Afghan Taliban arrest officials who removed Pakistan's flag from aid truck

Arif Hayat

September 22, 2021

The Taliban have decided to take action against officials who removed Pakistan's flag from an aid truck that arrived in Afghanistan via the Torkham border carrying necessary food items.

On Sunday, Pakistan had donated food items — loaded in 17 container trucks — on humanitarian grounds to the newly-formed Taliban government in Afghanistan.

Speaking on the occasion, Pak-Afghan Cooperation Forum Chairman Habibullah Khan had said that the goodwill gesture from Pakistan was made at a time when the war-stricken and impoverished people of Afghanistan direly needed such assistance.

However, a video emerged on social media of Taliban officials removing a Pakistan flag attached to the side of a truck.

In the video, which shows normal citizens and Taliban fighters, people are heard saying to "rip" the flag. Loud cheers and chants are heard as the flag is removed while a Taliban fighter says it should be "burned".

In response to the video, Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement that the entire cabinet of the Islamic Emirate was "saddened" by the incident.

Source: Dawn

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

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647759/afghan-taliban-arrest-officials-who-removed-pakistans-flag-from-aid-truck

--------

Pakistan Sikh religious leadership held discussions with visiting Akal Takht jathedar on religious issues

Sep 21, 2021

AMRITSAR: Sitting and former presidents of Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC) reportedly held discussions with the visiting Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh on various Sikh religious issues including Nanakshahi Calendar (NC).

Giani Harpreet Singh who is currently on a visit to Pakistan led a ‘nagar kirtan’ (religious procession ) from Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur Sahib, Pakistan up to Zero Line at Indo Pak international border, Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur district of India on the eve of the death anniversary of Sikh’s first master Guru Nanak Dev which is being observed at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur Sahib on September 22.

A local resident Babar Jalandhari informed TOI over the phone from Kartarpur Sahib that Akal Takht Jathedar along with PSGPC presidents was sitting in attendance of Sri Guru Granth Sahib installed in the golden palanquin which was placed in a special bus given to Gurdwara Darbar Sahib by PSGPC. Panj Payara's (five beloved ones) had led the nagar kirtan which is the third nagar kirtan up to Zero Line since the opening of Kartapur Corridor.

"It took nearly one hour to traverse around 4.5 kilometer distance from Gurdwara Darbar Sahib to Zero line," said Babar.

According to sources Ameer Singh, president of PSGPC, and former presidents of Pakistan’s Sikh body including Satwant Singh and Bishan Singh held a meeting with Harpreet Singh to discuss various religious issues prominently among the issue of NC.

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-sikh-religious-leadership-held-discussions-with-visiting-akal-takht-jathedar-on-religious-issues/articleshow/86403458.cms

--------

UMT Holds Seminar on ‘Inheritance Laws in Islam’

September 22, 2021

The University of Management and Technology (UMT)’s Women Leaders Awareness Committee under the umbrella of Women Leaders organized it first-ever awareness session titled: “Inheritance Laws in Islam and Their Implementation in Pakistan.”

Objective of the seminar was to create awareness among the women about their Islamic legal rights of inheritance and dissemination information regarding law of inheritance in Islam and its implementation in Pakistan.

Justice (r) Nasira Javed Iqbal was the guest speaker on the occasion. Justice (r) Nasira Iqbal said that Islam and the country constitution contain all the information related to inheritance.

She elaborated her point by saying that women’s share in inheritance is meant to make them financially viable so that they make their livelihood to meet any eventuality.

It is essential for them not only to generate income but also to sustain herself and her children.

Source: Pak Observer

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

https://pakobserver.net/umt-holds-seminar-on-inheritance-laws-in-islam/

--------

Bilawal expresses concern over Afghan Taliban and TTP links

September 22, 2021

ISLAMABAD: “There have been complaints from journalists in Afghanistan that women are protesting for their rights and we are concerned that girls are not being allowed to go to schools,” said Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari in an interview with BBC World on Tuesday.

“We continue to encourage the new regime in Afghanistan to live up to international expectations if they want international recognition,” he said according to a press release issued here after the interview.

The PPP chairman said that as soon as the situation in Afghanistan developed, the PPP called for the government of Pakistan to hold a session of parliament.

“As with various issues in our country, we have been unable to form a national consensus. We require an inclusive foreign policy that is per the will of the parliament not of any individual,” he said.

Responding to a question, Mr Bhutto-Zardari said Pakistan’s influence over Afghanistan was often exaggerated, however, Pakistan should play its role in encouraging an inclusive government in Afghanistan, for the protection of women and children there.

“We should work ... to ensure that Afghan land is not used to promote terrorism in the region.”

The interviewer asked a question about the civilian government having little say in matters, to which Bilawal responded by saying that it was true that the democratic space in Pakistan was ‘shrinking’, especially during Imran Khan’s government.

“In order for that space to be regained, it is the choice of democratic people of the country to play an active role in the political system, through the parliament and media.”

The role of various agencies in Afghanistan over the past two decades will be discussed in history, he said.

“Everyone seems to be blaming one another, but it is important to work together for a positive outcome for the sake of the region. For the women and youth of Afghanistan who have so much potential, it is worrisome that their potential is in danger.”

The PPP leader further said: “We are very concerned about the potential blowbacks of the developments in Afghanistan as well as the links between Tehreek-i-Taliban Afghanistan and Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan. We have suffered immensely at the hands of violent extremism. I lost my mother, the former prime minister Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto to Islamic extremism within Pakistan. In order to counter the threat of extremism, we need determination from the government of Pakistan to ensure no space for terrorism or extremism.”

He said: “What we have learned from Afghanistan is that extremism is not battled with bombs alone, but ideas and opportunities. We have to provide for the people of Pakistan who have a stake in the political and economic system. When there is this sort of deprivation, all sorts of negative influences can take advantage of the situation.

Source: Dawn

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

https://www.dawn.com/news/1647696/bilawal-expresses-concern-over-afghan-taliban-and-ttp-links

--------

 

India

 

Shah Rukh Khan Says ‘Ganpati Bappa Morya’ and Islamists, Wish Death on Him, Fourth Year in a Row

20 September, 2021

Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan on Sunday took to social media to share a picture of a murti of Lord Ganesha ahead of visarjan following the Ganesh Chaturthi.

Ganpati Bappa Morya, he said as he and his family bid adieu to the Vighnaharta. And as usual, like clockwork, Islamists descended upon his timeline, asking him to ‘convert’ to Hinduism as idol worship is ‘haram’ in Islam. This time, the hate was not just limited to faceless, nameless trolls, but even blue-ticked and verified social media Islamists were out there attacking Khan.

Sameera Khan hating on SRK

Pro-Pakistan Twitter user Sameera Khan, who currently lives in US as per her Twitter bio asked Shah Rukh Khan to ‘convert’ already as idol worship is the greatest sin in Islam. She asserted that religion comes before nation and hence Khan should ‘convert’.

She was supported by other Islamists who called Khan ‘worst then kafirs’.

Kafir is one who does not follow Islam as faith. ‘Munafiq’ is a ‘false Muslim’ and decried in the Quran who may be outwardly Muslims but inwardly not a strict follower of the faith. Since Shah Rukh Khan celebrates Hindu festivals including idol worship of Lord Ganesha, he was branded a ‘munafiq’ by the Islamists.

More hate for SRK

Many called him Shirk and Kafir and many fundamentalists believe that kafirs and ‘non-believers’ deserve to be punished with death. Murtid is apostasy and apostasy is also to be punished with death.

Pakistanis losing their minds

His fans from Pakistan, where Bollywood and the Khans are very popular, were also quite triggered. Shoaib Niazi, who as per his profile worked with Pakistan news channel Geo News, was quite upset that a ‘role model’ was indulging in idol worship. When someone tried to put sense of inclusivity to Niazi, another Pakistani user claimed that idol worship is not necessary to be a good human and that by doing so, he was ‘proving his loyalty’ to those who ‘worship that particular idol’, that is the Hindus.

SRK being attacked

The pattern is predictable. Any Muslim celebrity who celebrates or wishes for non-Islamic festivals like Diwali, Christmas, get their Muslim credentials cancelled by Islamists.

Comments on SRK

One does not even look too far – a cursory glance under his tweet will show how the Islamists were triggered.

Unfortunately, this is the fourth year in a row (at least) that he has been attacked, and this time even the blue-ticked verified accounts joined in. OpIndia had reported last week how this year, Khan had skipped wishing his fans on Ganpati on Chaturthi earlier this month. This was after years of abuses and attacks by Islamists on him and his family.

Source: Opindia

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

https://www.opindia.com/2021/09/shah-rukh-khan-ganpati-visarjan-islamists-attack/

--------

India: Man Held for Allegedly Uploading Derogatory Videos against Islam on His YouTube

22nd September 2021

CHENNAI: A 52-year-old man was arrested for allegedly uploading derogatory videos against Islam on his YouTube channel. Police identified the man as A Sivakumar, who was running a yogikudil ashram near Indra Nagar in Puzhal.

The action was taken based on a complaint by Saadiq Basha (40), the Madhavaram in-charge of Manithaneya Makkal Katchi. “Sivakumar has been uploading controversial and derogatory videos against Islam, Gods of other religions, and Muslim women. One such video has gone viral on a social media platform,” Basha alleged in the complaint.

Police launched an investigation and arrested Sivakumar after an extensive search operation. A case was registered under eight sections of the IPC, and one section of the Information Technology Act. During the investigation, it was found that Sivakumar was earlier arrested and given bail in a case in January this year for allegedly posting derogatory videos against Hindu Gods.

Four held for possession of meth; 561 grams, vehicles seized

Chennai: The city police arrested four men from two different places, allegedly for possessing methamphetamine, a synthetic drug. Acting on a tip-off, a special team under Kilpauk Deputy Commissioner, Karthikeyan, secured one K Ahmed (26) of Kasimedu from Namachivayapuram on Monday. A few sachets of the drug were seized from him. Based on his inputs, they searched a house in Kodambakkam and arrested one A Sivakumar (49) of Padianallur. In total, 557 grams of the drug were seized. The Kodungaiyur police later arrested two others, A Sheik Abdullah (25) of Arumbakkam and P Balaji (22) of Kodungaiyur.

Source: New Indian Express

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

https://www.newindianexpress.com/cities/chennai/2021/sep/22/chennai-man-held-for-videos-against-islam-2362056.html

--------

Muzaffarnagar conversion case: UP ATS arrest Islamic scholar Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui; foreign funding traced

Sep 22, 2021

Meerut: The Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad on Wednesday arrested Islamic scholar Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui, who is one of the biggest clerics from western UP, from Meerut on charges of religious conversion.

His name cropped up during the investigation into the Umar Gautam case. Umar Gautam was jailed in June after the UP police rounded him up for allegedly running a conversion racket.

The 64-year-old Islamic scholar was on the radar of security agencies due to suspicious activities. He was nabbed as soon as he arrived in Meerut last night. He is currently being interrogated by UP Police.

Siddiqui, a resident of Muzaffarnagar, was arrested in connection with India’s largest religious conversion syndicate busted by the UP ATS, the police said.

“He runs Jamia Imam Waliullah trust that funds several madrassas for which he received huge foreign funding. Investigation shows Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui’s trust received Rs 3 crores in foreign funding, including Rs 1.5 from Bahrain. Six teams of ATS have been formed to investigate this case,” Uttar Pradesh Police ADG (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar told the media on Wednesday.

Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui arrested Muzaffarnagar conversion caseMaulana Kaleem Siddiqui.  |  Photo Credit: TwitterKEY HIGHLIGHTSThe 64-year-old Islamic scholar was on the radar of security agencies due to suspicious activitiesHe was nabbed as soon as he arrived in Meerut last nightAmanatullah Khan, the Aam Aadmi Party MLA from Delhi’s Okhla, called the arrest “atrocity on Muslims”

Meerut: The Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad on Wednesday arrested Islamic scholar Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui, who is one of the biggest clerics from western UP, from Meerut on charges of religious conversion.

His name cropped up during the investigation into the Umar Gautam case. Umar Gautam was jailed in June after the UP police rounded him up for allegedly running a conversion racket.

The 64-year-old Islamic scholar was on the radar of security agencies due to suspicious activities. He was nabbed as soon as he arrived in Meerut last night. He is currently being interrogated by UP Police.

Siddiqui, a resident of Muzaffarnagar, was arrested in connection with India’s largest religious conversion syndicate busted by the UP ATS, the police said.

“He runs Jamia Imam Waliullah trust that funds several madrassas for which he received huge foreign funding. Investigation shows Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui’s trust received Rs 3 crores in foreign funding, including Rs 1.5 from Bahrain. Six teams of ATS have been formed to investigate this case,” Uttar Pradesh Police ADG (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar told the media on Wednesday.

Source: Times Now News

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

https://www.timesnownews.com/india/article/muzaffarnagar-conversion-case-up-ats-arrest-islamic-scholar-maulana-kaleem-siddiqui-from-meerut/815140

--------

BJP will rebuild all temples, demolished to construct mosques: MLA Sangeet Som

September 22, 2021

The BJP will rebuild all temples which were demolished to construct mosques, the party's Uttar Pradesh MLA from Sardhana assembly seat in Meerut, Sangeet Som, asserted on Tuesday.

Som made the assertion while dubbing former UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav a seasonal Hindu.

People who caned seers during their regime are now visiting Haridwar to tender apologies to them and have ended up proclaiming to build Lord Vishvakarma temple, he said, taking a dig at the previous Samajwadi Party government.

Som was addressing a news conference, convened to detail the achievements of the Yogi Adityanath government in the last four and half years.

Mocking Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, he said, Ahead of the upcoming UP assembly elections, many people become seasonal Hindus. The people who ordered firing at devotees are now talking of building temples, he said.

Source: The Week

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

https://www.theweek.in/news/india/2021/09/22/bjp-will-rebuild-all-temples-demolished-to-construct-mosques-mla-sangeet-som.html

--------

Taliban Takeover Forcing Heroin Surge into India; Assessment Spurred By Two Sizable Seizures of Heroin off The Gujarat Coast

Sep 22, 2021

AHMEDABAD: International drug lords are desperate to pump in prodigious quantities of heroin into India, officers of security and anti-smuggling agencies said. The assessment is spurred by two sizable seizures of heroin made recently off the Gujarat coast. The officers said the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has given a ballast of urgency to the drug mafia.

Officers of the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), and the Gujarat Anti-terrorism squad (ATS) confirmed that concentrated efforts are being made to push heroin produced in Afghanistan into India. The officers said that the smugglers are likely to use the sea route via Iran.

The officers said that the drug lords fear confiscation of the heroin stock by the Taliban. Apart from staggering financial losses, the druglords also face the prospect of summary execution if caught by the Taliban, the officers said. These factors are fuelling drug runs into India, the officers said.

Sources in the agencies said that the possibility of more heroin ships being caught in Indian waters cannot be ruled out. “The DRI found about 3,000kg of heroin at Mundra port and the investigation is underway,” a senior NCB officer said. “The heroin was smuggled from Afghanistan, which is the biggest producer of opium. The country has labs to process opium into heroin.”

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-forcing-heroin-surge-into-india/articleshow/86412627.cms

--------

Turkish president Erdogan again makes reference to Kashmir in UNGA address

Sep 22, 2021

UNITED NATIONS: Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has again referred to the issue of Kashmir in his address to world leaders at the high-level UN General Assembly session.

Last year also, Erdogan in his pre-recorded video statement to the General Debate had made a reference to Jammu and Kashmir.

India at that time termed it as "completely unacceptable", saying Turkey should learn to respect the sovereignty of other nations and reflect on its own policies more deeply.

Erdogan in his address to the General Debate on Tuesday said: “We maintain our stance in favour of solving the ongoing problem in Kashmir for 74 years, through dialogue between the parties and within the framework of relevant United Nations resolutions.”

The Turkish President, a close ally of Pakistan, had repeatedly raised the issue of Kashmir in his address to the high-level General Debate.

He had also raised the Kashmir issue during his visit to Pakistan last year.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) at that time has said Erdogan's remarks reflected neither an understanding of history nor of the conduct of diplomacy and that they will have strong implications on India's ties with Turkey.

It said India rejected the repeated attempts by Turkey to justify the cross-border terrorism "practised so blatantly" by Pakistan.

In his address on Tuesday, the Turkish President also referred to China's minority Muslim Uyghurs in Xinjiang and Myanmar's Rohingya during his address.

Erdogan said that “within China's territorial integrity perspective, we do believe that more efforts need to be displayed regarding the protection of the basic rights of the Muslim Uyghur Turks.”

Source: Times of India

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

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/turkish-president-erdogan-again-makes-reference-to-kashmir-in-unga-address/articleshow/86421507.cms

--------

OBC Muslim groups too demand caste based census

22nd September 2021

New Delhi: OBC Muslim groups have now pressed for caste based census in the country which has been a major demand of political parties across the board from NDA allies to the UPA.

National Momin Conference which is a Muslim OBC body, on Wednesday demanded from the Prime Minister that if it is not done now, the OBC community will have to wait for another ten years.

Shakiluzzaman Ansari, president of the body said, “the Prime Minister himself calls that he is from the OBC community and he knows the problems of the community as well. We hope that Prime Minister will accept the demand of the community.”

MS Education Academy

Ansari who was the member of National Backward Commission, said, “The country should know what is the population of the OBC and what is their social status so that welfare schemes could be diverted towards that particular community.”

The National Momin Conference has passed a resolution on the issue and will be writing to Prime Minister. Not only this, another body, the All-India Pasmanda Muslim Mahaz, which has been carrying out a campaign for reservation to the backward Muslim communities, has demanded that a caste based census of the minority community also be conducted.

A meeting of 17 Muslim organisations was recently held to chalk out further action plan.

Mahaz President Ali Anwar Ansari has said the caste census should not be restricted to the Hindu community but should be extended to the minority community as well, since Muslims also follow the caste system.

Source: Siasat Daily

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

https://www.siasat.com/obc-muslim-groups-too-demand-caste-based-census-2195590/

--------

 

Europe

 

German policewoman wrote love letters to neo-Nazi terrorist: Report

21.09.2021

BERLIN

A German policewoman was suspended after an investigation found that she sent love letters to a neo-Nazi terrorist, local media reported on Tuesday.

The young police officer posted several romantic letters and also praised the xenophobic and anti-Semitic views of the neo-Nazi terrorist Stephan Balliet, who is serving a prison sentence, according to newsweekly Stern.

The officer, who was reportedly in her 20s, was working at a police station in the Bitterfeld district of the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt and used a fictitious name to conceal her identity while posting letters to the prison, according to the report.

An internal investigation was ongoing to reveal whether the young police officer had ties to far-right and neo-Nazi groups.

Balliet was sentenced to life in prison last year, for the terrorist attacks he carried out in 2019 in the eastern city of Halle, which claimed the lives of two people and injured several others.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/german-policewoman-wrote-love-letters-to-neo-nazi-terrorist-report/2370699

--------

EU Ministers Agree On Bloc’s Approach Toward Afghanistan

Agnes Szucs

21.09.2021

BRUSSELS

EU foreign ministers on Tuesday adopted a document guiding the bloc’s approach toward the Taliban-appointed interim government in Afghanistan.

The conclusion officially confirmed the main findings of the EU foreign ministers’ informal meeting hosted by the Slovenian presidency of the Council of the EU earlier this month.

In the document, the bloc stresses its commitment to the peace and stability of Afghanistan and the wider region, and it vows to support the Afghan people.

For this purpose, the EU is willing to maintain an “operational engagement” with the interim government that doesn’t imply official recognition.

The EU sets five conditions for cooperation, including the fight against international terrorism, respect for human rights, especially women’s rights, the establishment of an inclusive and representative government, free access for humanitarian aid, and granting free departure for foreign citizens and Afghans at risk.

The foreign ministers also agreed to preserve a “minimal presence” of the bloc’s diplomatic representation in Kabul in order to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid and to monitor the situation.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/eu-ministers-agree-on-bloc-s-approach-toward-afghanistan/2370532

--------

Time running out for nuclear deal, Germany warns Iran

Oliver Towfigh Nia  

21.09.2021

BERLIN

Germany’s foreign minister on Tuesday warned Iran that time is running out for diplomatic efforts to rescue the 2015 nuclear deal.

“I will meet with the Iranian foreign minister and once again make it very clear that we are running out of time,” Heiko Maas said in New York ahead of his meeting with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

“We do not agree that the Iranian negotiating delegation will return to Vienna for negotiations in two, three months. It has to be done quickly now. This is not only our expectation, but also that of our French, British and American friends.”

Maas reiterated that a nuclear agreement was still possible if Tehran returns swiftly to the dialogue table.

“We still believe that it is possible to lead these negotiations to a positive result, but not in months, but in the coming weeks,” he added.

Source: Anadolu Agency

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

https://www.aa.com.tr/en/europe/time-running-out-for-nuclear-deal-germany-warns-iran/2370866

--------

 

North America

 

US President Biden calls for a ‘sovereign and democratic’ state of Palestine

22 September ,2021

US President Joe Biden doubled down on his calls for a “sovereign and democratic” Palestinian state on Tuesday during his speech to the UN General Assembly.

Although he admitted that there is “a long way” to reach the goal of a state for Palestine, Biden said: “I continue to believe that a two-state solution is the best way to ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish democratic state, living in peace alongside a viable, sovereign and democratic Palestinian state.”

Biden’s comments coincided with strong opposition in Washington over a bill to be passed by members of Congress, which included $1 billion for Israel’s so-called Iron Dome.

Several Democratic colleagues of Biden said they would not pass the bill if the allocation were included. It was a further sign of growing frustration among progressive lawmakers over the decadeslong stance of US support for Israel.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/22/US-President-Biden-calls-for-a-sovereign-and-democratic-state-of-Palestine

--------

Biden says US starting ‘era of relentless diplomacy’ after Afghanistan

21 September ,2021

US President Joe Biden told the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday that America is “opening a new era of relentless diplomacy” following the end of the war in Afghanistan.

Biden also said the United States would be prepared to use force “if necessary” but that military power must be a “tool of last resort.”

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/world/2021/09/21/Biden-says-US-starting-era-of-relentless-diplomacy-after-Afghanistan

--------

 

Arab World

 

Imams of mosques in al-Anbar under the pressure of the election candidates: Sharia, tribalism, and authority

2021-09-22

Shafaq News/ With less than a month from the parliamentary elections, pressures exerted by the candidates on the Imams and clerics in the mosques of al-Anbar have been taken to higher levels. Candidates from influential parties in the governorate recognize the centrality of religion in the public consciousness. They intend to use the most of it to promote their campaigns ahead of the democratic event.

The Imams of mosques have informed the candidates on several occasions that exploiting their clerical status for electoral purposes is forbidden. So, the latter resorted to "Tribalism" to pressure their cousins to endorse their campaigns.

"Imams, preachers, and clerics in the mosques of al-Anbar are tribesmen. The majority of candidates are also members of their tribes. Therefore, exploiting that, the candidates have demanded the Imams and preachers to endorse them on the mosques' platforms to promote them," Sheikh Mohammed al-Kuhli, a mosque Imam in al-Anbar, told Shafaq News agency.

"Our answer to these calls was to keep the mosques away from the elections and political debates because they exist to reform, not to promote Islamic or civil candidates," al-Kuhli said.

"Imams and preachers support the electoral process, not the candidates. We have seen that candidates and parties work according to their agendas and interests. On the other hand, we seek the best interest of the people and the country in general," al-Kuhli continued.

Sheikh Talal Abdullah said, "Allah says in His Holy Book 'and the places of worship are only for Allah, so pray not unto anyone along with Allah', i.e., we should not promote on its platform because these places are dedicated for goodness and worshipping."

"Allah Almighty has ordered building the mosques to recite the Qur'an and pray for guidance. Hence, it is not permitted to promote election campaigns or political issues because this is forbidden by the agreement of all Islamic sects," he added.

"According to the laws and directives of the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC), exploiting or using the houses of worshipping in the electoral propaganda is not allowed," said Nasrat Iyad, director of the IHEC in al-Anbar.

"So far, there have been no violations for the electoral propaganda regulations in mosques. We have not received any complaints about the use of mosques to promote election campaigns. If we receive a confirmed complaint about this matter, the case will be brought before the Board of Commissioners, and the necessary measures will be taken," Iyad said in an interview with Shafaq News agency.

"All political alliances in Al-Anbar are using their influence to promote their electoral propaganda in a certain direction. In the west of al-Anbar, some independent candidates are exploiting al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces-PMF) for this," said Uday Ahmed, an observer for the elections in al-Anbar governorate.

"Candidates from the Takadum party led by Iraqi Parliament Speaker Mohammad al-Halbousi are using government departments in the governorate to promote their electoral propaganda by executing projects in the constituencies of the candidates," he told Shafaq News agency.

Source: Shafaq News

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

https://shafaq.com/en/Report/Imams-of-mosques-in-al-Anbar-under-the-pressure-of-the-election-candidates-Sharia-tribalism-and-authority

--------

Inheritance laws in Egypt needn’t follow strict Islamic law

Heba Yosry

22 September ,2021

There has been an ongoing debate recently in Egypt concerning the laws of inheritance. In the country family law is mainly influenced by Islamic law and hence the discourse was among religious scholars, but was followed closely by numerous Egyptians who are directly impacted.

The underlying - and in many ways ancient question that sparked this controversy is: is it permissible to sell one’s assets completely to one’s children before death?

Historically, the answer invoked direct quotations from the Quran stating that God knows best and that one is forbidden from tampering with Divine wisdom that guides laws of inheritance.

Accordingly a person who willfully chooses to leave his or her belongings solely to their children might face ramifications in the afterlife because of disobedience. Furthermore, allowing an uncle to have part of the inheritance or giving the son double will allow the males in the family to take better care of the female members.

It is claimed that it will also provide cohesion and retain the family’s wellbeing because men will naturally feel moral, and take financial responsibility for the women, remaining as their main source of support. Often customs can include the stipulation that a girl can get married and her husband can financially support her while a boy needs to support himself.

To appease concerned parents asking questions about the ins and outs of inheritance law they are told that they are free to leave an endowment to whomever they wish, but the amount cannot exceed a third of what they themselves own.

For some this seems appropriate, but from personal experience and anecdotal evidence suggests that inheritance laws do not bring feelings of cohesion and togetherness: it instead brings strife, discord and a very quick disintegration of family relationships. There is a naivety thinking that bonds grow stronger.

When my father died 12 years ago, a level of ugliness and greed appeared that wasn’t present before. It led to an uncle harassing and filing a string of lawsuits against his nieces and I, and our mother.

Living in the world of idealism it’s easy to believe that uncles have moral and can offer balanced financial responsibility towards his nieces and nephews, but in reality over the decades many have suffered.

This is why when the Azhari scholar Sheikh Ahmed Kereima announced that it is permissible for a parent to sell, and even if the sale was strictly on paper, all assets must go to the children made me jubilant.

He explained that inheritance laws should be brought in the event of a person’s death, and since a person is still alive and can exercise their own freewill that person can do with those assets what they wish. His view is logical, modern, and realistic and doesn’t negate Divine commandments in any way.

Some argue that God ensures the child’s rights by allowing a third of one’s assets to be endowed in the form of will which should be given to the beneficiary even before any debts that the deceased might have.

True, the will can be viewed as a continuation of the deceased’s agency even after their death. Yet, sometimes it is simply not enough, and sometimes adults take what the children need because it is their rightful inheritance with no sense of responsibility or remorse because God has given it to them and who can debate with God.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/views/2021/09/22/Inheritance-laws-in-Egypt-needn-t-follow-strict-Islamic-law

--------

Kurdistan’s leaders appreciate the “influential” role of the Union of Islamic Scholars

2021-09-21

Shafaq News/ the Prominent Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani and President Nechirvan Barzani praised the role of the Kurdistan’ Union of Islamic Scholars in “rejecting violence and extremism” and confronting terrorism.

The two leaders issued statements on the 51st anniversary of establishing the Union in the Region by Mullah Mustafa Barzani.

Leader Masoud Barzani said, "The establishment of the Union of Islamic Scholars in Kurdistan by the immortal Barzani was an essential step in consolidating the role of scholars and senior clerics in promoting the principles of faith…spreading a culture of coexistence …educating citizens in all regions, cities and villages.”

He added, “the Scholars played remarkable roles during the struggle and revolution by raising the national awareness among people, introducing rights and rejecting injustice.”

"I highly appreciate the effective and influential role of scholars and clerics, who dealt with wisdom when terrorism represented a great threat to the region and the world.” He concluded.

In turn, tThe President of Kurdistan said in another statement, "We highly value the role, influence, and struggle of the Union of Islamic Scholars in Kurdistan… for more than half a century they serve the religion and the people of Kurdistan, strengthen the national spirit, confront injustice and defend the rights of religious scholars,… we fully support their rights.”

Source: Shafaq News

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

https://shafaq.com/en/Kurdistan/Kurdistan-s-leaders-appreciate-the-influential-role-of-the-Union-of-Islamic-Scholars

--------

Saudi Arabia and the UAE condemn failed coup attempt in Sudan

22 September ,2021

Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have condemned a failed coup attempt that took place in Sudan overnight on Monday, according to both countries’ foreign ministries.

“The Kingdom denounces and condemns the failed coup attempt that took place against the legitimate state institutions in Sudan, and affirms its solidarity with Sudan in all that supports its security, stability and prosperity, the government and the people,” the Saudi foreign ministry said in a statement carried by the official SPA news agency.

“The UAE condemns the attempted coup in Sudan. It affirms its support for its brotherly people,” the country’s foreign ministry said in a statement carried by the official WAM news agency.

A government source told Reuters that the attempted coup involved an effort to take control of state radio in Omdurman, across the River Nile from the capital Khartoum.

“The military has defeated the coup attempt and the situation is completely under control,” the media adviser to Sovereign Council head, General Abdelfattah al-Burhan, later told state news agency SUNA.

Measures were being taken to contain a limited number of people involved, the source said. All those implicated had been arrested, SUNA reported.

A witness said that military units loyal to the council had used tanks to close a bridge connecting Khartoum with Omdurman early on Tuesday morning.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/22/Saudi-Arabia-condemns-failed-coup-attempt-in-Sudan

--------

Saudi Arabia calls on world powers to prevent Iran from strengthening nuclear capabilities

September 22, 2021

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia supports international efforts aimed at preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, ministers said on Tuesday.

During its weekly meeting, chaired by King Salman from NEOM, the Saudi Cabinet restated the Kingdom’s position laid out at a recent International Atomic Energy Agency meeting.

During the meeting last week, Prince Abdullah bin Khaled bin Sultan, the Kingdom’s representative to the agency, called on Iran to fully comply with the IAEA’s safeguard agreements under the 2015 nuclear deal.

“Iran’s nuclear blackmail must be stopped,” he said.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1933256/saudi-arabia

--------

Hezbollah threatens Beirut blast probe judge: reports

September 21, 2021

BEIRUT: Tarek Bitar, the judge leading the investigation into the August 2020 Beirut Port blast, received a threat from the militant Hezbollah group, according to Lebanese news reports.

Arab News learned that the head of Hezbollah’s Liaison and Coordination Unit, Wafiq Safa, visited Public Prosecutor Judge Ghassan Oweidat and the head of the Supreme Judicial Council, Judge Suhail Abboud, on Monday.

The motives behind the visits were unknown but Safa reportedly said, “Bitar’s performance has raised the ire (of Hezbollah) and we will keep a close eye on his work until the end, and should he drift off the course, we will remove him from his position.”

In response to the threat, Bitar said: “It is fine, I do not care how they will remove me,” according to Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation reporter Edmond Sassine.

Bitar, who issued several arrest warrants over the past few weeks pertaining to his investigation, set up sessions to question former ministers and current MPs Ali Hassan Khalil, Ghazi Zeaiter, and Nohad Al-Machnouk about their knowledge of the deadly Beirut Port explosion.

Bitar summoned Khalil for interrogation on Sept. 30 and Zeaiter and Machnouk and Oct. 1. The judge took advantage of the expiration of the extraordinary parliament mandate after the Najib Mikati government was granted the vote of confidence in a session held on Monday, and the automatic lifting of parliamentary immunities, pending the launch of the regular mandate in mid-October.

The Beirut Port explosion on Aug. 4, 2020, killed more than 200 and left 6,500 injured when thousands of tons of ammonium nitrate detonated along with quantities of seized explosives. The deadly blast destroyed the Beirut waterfront and its surrounding neighborhoods.

Bitar charged the former ministers with “a felony of probable intent to murder” in addition to “a misdemeanor of negligence” because they were aware of the presence of ammonium nitrate and “did not take measures to avoid the explosion.”

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1933041/middle-east

--------

 

Mideast

 

Anger as US progressive Democrats object to Israel’s Iron Dome funding

22 September ,2021

A group of leftist US Democrats came under heavy fire Tuesday after reportedly vowing to nix a short-term spending bill over a $1 billion allocation for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.

The party leadership vowed there would be no interruption in funding, with the cash being sourced elsewhere -- but not before being berated by Republicans for capitulating to “anti-Semites” on their left flank.

While the row looked ultimately like a storm in a teacup, it underlined that progressives are becoming increasingly skeptical of no-strings-attached aid to America’s key ally in the Middle East, just months after the end of hardline right-winger Benjamin Netanyahu’s 11-year premiership.

Operational for a decade, the Iron Dome has intercepted and destroyed thousands of short-range rockets and artillery shells launched by Hamas militants from Gaza before they were able to hit populated areas, Israeli officials say.

Tuesday’s drama was sparked by House Democrats removing a provision originally included in a bill to keep the federal government funded that would have helped boost the Israeli air defense system.

The about-face came after a group of leftist representatives objected to the allocation, US media reported, threatening to tank the bill when it comes up for a vote later Tuesday.

House Appropriations chair Rosa DeLauro said there would be no interruption in funding for the Iron Dome, Politico reported, giving assurances that it would be in the defense budget for the 2022 fiscal year.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/22/Anger-as-US-progressive-Democrats-object-to-Israel-s-Iron-Dome-funding

--------

Iran’s president, criticizing US, likens sanctions to ‘war’

21 September ,2021

Iran’s new president slammed US sanctions imposed on his nation as a mechanism of war Tuesday, packing a full slate of direct criticism of the United States into his first UN address as head of state.

“Sanctions are the US’ new way of war with the nations of the world,” President Ebrahim Raisi said. Although some 100 heads of state and government are attending the UN General Assembly leaders’ meeting in New York this week, Raisi delivered his remarks from Tehran remotely as some have also chosen to do.

Raisi, who was sworn in last month after an election, is a conservative cleric and former judiciary chief who is close to Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He used his time before world leaders to slam the United States and espouse Iran’s Islamic political identity.

“What is seen in our region today proves that not only the hegemonist and the idea of hegemony, but also the project of imposing Westernized identity have failed miserably,” Raisi said.

“Today, the US does not get to exit Iraq and Afghanistan but is expelled,” he added. The US military withdrew from Afghanistan and has largely withdrawn from Iraq.

“Today, the world doesn’t care about “America First” or “America is Back”,” he said, referring to the slogans used by Republican US President Donald Trump and his successor, Democratic President Joe Biden.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/21/Iran-s-president-criticizing-US-likens-sanctions-to-war-

--------

Houthis not willing to make peace, Yemen’s parliament leader tells US envoy

September 22, 2021

DUBAI: The Iran-backed Houthi militia are unwilling to make peace in Yemen and are actually undermining efforts for hostilities to cease in the conflict-ridden country, a senior Yemeni politician said.

“We’re ready to achieve peace, but the Houthi militia has not yet agreed to do so, it has continued to deliberately undermine peace efforts and proposals, going on fighting. These indicators show they have never been willing to make peace,” Parliament speaker, Sultan Al-Barakani said as he met US envoy to Yemen Timothy Lenderking to discuss peace initiatives for Yemen.

The Houthis are to blame for blocking peace efforts and initiative and escalating military actions targeting civilians and facilities including Mocha port, state news agency SABA quoted the parliament leader as saying.

Al-Barakani pointed to the recent public execution of nine people, who were accused of being involved in the killing of Houthi leader Saleh Al-Samad in 2018, as an example of the militia’s crimes against the Yemeni people.

Meanwhile, the Yemeni Network for Rights and Freedoms claimed it had documented 6,476  violations committed by the Houthis against women in more than five years, involving mostly deaths and injuries caused be artillery shelling, as well as mines and other explosive devices detonating.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1933396/middle-east

--------

Iran, Hezbollah planning attacks on US to retaliate for Soleimani slaying: Officials

21 September ,2021

Iran is planning ways to retaliate against the US for the slaying of Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani, and Lebanese Hezbollah is being closely watched for potential attacks on American soil, a top US intelligence official warned Tuesday.

“Protecting against such threats is even more important now, as Iran, its agents, and proxies plan ways to retaliate against the United States for the January 2020 killing of IRGC-QF Commander Qassem Soleimani,” Christine Abizaid, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said during testimony before the US Senate’s Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Abizaid said the US had assessed that Iran-backed Hezbollah maintained a “high threshold for conducting attacks in the Homeland.

“Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah balances his organization’s view of the United States as one of its primary adversaries against the likelihood of US retaliation if the group decided to conduct an attack,” Abizaid added.

Soleimani was killed in a drone strike ordered by former President Donald Trump after the Iranian general was said to have been planning attacks on US diplomats and military personnel.

The strike, which was carried out in Baghdad, also killed Abu Mehdi al-Muhandis, then-deputy commander of Iraq’s Shiite militia, Popular Mobilization Forces.

“Iran views terrorism as a tool to support its core objectives, including projecting power in the Middle East, defending Shia Islam, and deterring its strategic rivals,” Abizaid said.

Turning to Iraq, Abizaid suggested that Iran-backed Shiite militias were posing the “most immediate threat to US interests,” citing drone attacks on US facilities there.

The US intelligence official also highlighted Iran’s support for the Houthis in Yemen. “In Yemen, Iran has maintained its years-long effort to support Houthi attacks against Saudi Arabia and other targets located in the Gulf, including those involving long-range missiles and UAVs,” she said.

For his part, FBI Director Chris Wray said Iran and its global proxies were continuing to plot attacks against the US and its allies throughout the Middle East.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/21/Iran-Hezbollah-planning-attacks-on-US-to-retaliate-for-Soleimani-slaying-Officials

--------

Iran says nuclear talks with world powers to resume in a few weeks

21 September ,2021

Iran said on Tuesday that talks with world powers over reviving its 2015 nuclear deal would resume in a few weeks, the official Iranian news agency IRNA reported.

“Every meeting requires prior coordination and the preparation of an agenda. As previously emphasized, the Vienna talks will resume soon and over the next few weeks,” Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said, according to IRNA.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/21/Iran-says-nuclear-talks-with-world-powers-to-resume-in-a-few-weeks

--------

Nearly 80% of Palestinians want President Abbas to quit: Poll

September 22, 2021

JERUSALEM: A new poll has found that nearly 80 percent of Palestinians want President Mahmoud Abbas to resign, reflecting widespread anger over the death of an activist in security forces’ custody and a crackdown on protests over the summer.

The survey released Tuesday found support for Abbas’ Hamas rivals remained high months after the 11-day Gaza war in May, when the Islamic militant group was widely seen by Palestinians as having scored a victory against a far more powerful Israel while the Western-backed Abbas was sidelined.

The latest poll by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research found that 45 percent of Palestinians believe Hamas should lead and represent them, while only 19 percent said Abbas’ secular Fatah deserved that role, showing only a slight shift in favor of Fatah over the last three months.

“This is the worst polling we’ve ever seen for the president,” said Khalil Shikaki, the head of the center, who has been surveying Palestinian public opinion for more than two decades. “He has never been in as bad a position as today.”

Despite his plummeting popularity and refusal to hold elections, the international community still views the 85-year-old Abbas as the leader of the Palestinian cause and a crucial partner in the peace process with Israel, which ground to a halt more than a decade ago.

His Palestinian Authority administers parts of the occupied West Bank under interim agreements signed with Israel at the height of the peace process in the 1990s. Hamas drove Abbas’ forces out of Gaza when it seized power there in 2007, a year after winning parliamentary elections.

Abbas’ latest woes began in April, when he called off the first Palestinian elections in 15 years as Fatah appeared to be headed for another embarrassing loss. Hamas’ popularity soared the following month amid protests in Jerusalem and the Gaza war, as many Palestinians accused the PA of doing nothing to aid their struggle against Israeli occupation.

The death of Nizar Banat, a harsh critic of the PA who died after being beaten by Palestinian security forces during a late-night arrest in June, ignited protests in the occupied West Bank calling on Abbas to resign.

His security forces launched a crackdown in response, beating and arresting several demonstrators.

Source: Arab News

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

https://www.arabnews.com/node/1933246/middle-east

--------

 

Africa

 

Unsure of Libya’s upcoming presidential elections, Islamists prefer to delay them

21/09/2021

Tripoli--The proposal presented Monday by Muslim-Brotherhood affiliated Khalid al-Mishri, the head of the Tripoli-based High Council of State (HCS), Libya’s consultative upper house of parliament, for the postponement of the presidential vote while keeping the legislative elections on track, reflected Libyan Islamists’ continuing concerns over  the vote for a president, analysts say.

The Islamists, the analysts pointed out, have not been able to prepare an electable candidate of their own and have accordingly opted for delaying tactics.

Mishri’s initiative showed that the Islamists’ problem does not lie in the constitutional requirements which will govern the vote, as they have claimed in the past, but rather in the elections themselves and the presidential ballot in particular.

Libyan rivals had agreed until now to hold both votes on December 24.

While everyone was talking about the constitutional rules, which will govern the elections, once a permanent constitution is agreed upon, Mishri was  insisting on only holding the elections after staging a referendum on the constitution.

The proposal if accepted would mean the postponement of the elections for a long time. Before putting a constitution to the public, the document itself has to be finalised. Various drafts have been worked on since 2014 but no agreed version has emerged.

It is not the first time that Islamists have announced their refusal to hold presidential elections but accepted legislative elections instead.

They had fielded the same proposal in 2018.  The issue, Libya experts say, was one of the reasons for the offensive launched by the Libyan National Army (LNA),  led by Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, on the capital, Tripoli, in April 2019.

Observers believe that the Islamists, who control the country’s vital institutions, fear the accession to power of an elected president who is not accountable to them, an outcome they are determined to prevent.

Some Libya experts believe however the Islamists are not jockeying this time to postpone the presidential vote indefinitely but are  trying to stall for time until the candidacy of Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah, or a figure close to him, emerges. Among such individuals is Ibrahim Dbeibah, son of billionaire Ali Dabaiba, son-in-law of the prime minister.

Dbeibah, who is close to Mishri, recently launched a PR campaign to polish his image, especially among young people, with the distribution of  20,000 Libyan dinar grants (about $5,000) to help bachelors aspiring to get married.  The move was criticised as a pre-electoral ploy.

The Islamists have in the past manoeuvred to pass a law for the election of the president indirectly by the Political Dialogue Forum, a UN-selected body. But the attempt failed. Critics of the bill said at the time that its aim was to facilitate the task of Islamists and Dbeibah by buying parliamentary votes and ensuring the success of their candidate.

The Political Dialogue Forum is a body with legislative powers that was formed during the dialogue that followed the defeat of the army in Tripoli and the end of the war. Its sessions in Tunis, last year, were besmirched by allegations of bribery attempts by the Dbeibah camp.

Mishri announced on Monday the details of a proposed “road map” that includes holding parliamentary ballot on the scheduled date before the end of the year, while postponing the presidential elections until after the constitutional referendum.

Mishri said at a press conference held in a hotel in the capital, Tripoli, that “the road map that we propose provides for holding legislative elections on the twenty-fourth of next December, and this is possible.”

He added, “After these elections are held, the bodies that bore the burden of inconsistencies during the last period (the Tobruk House of Representatives and the HCS) will exit, and there will be a new elected parliament that is required to submit the draft constitution to a referendum within a year” from the date of his election.”

Mishri pointed out that the High Council of State believed that “holding the presidential elections in the current period will not generate stability.”

“Elections are not an end in themselves, but the goal is to bring stability to the country,” he said.

He explained, “We believe that to bring stability, we must hold parliamentary elections first, and postpone the presidential elections until after the constitutional referendum.”

Mishri considered that the proposal to hold legislative elections, according to the roadmap of the HCS, “refutes the allegation that we are clinging to our positions, unlike the proposal submitted by the House of Representatives.”

He was referring to the plan recently presented by the Tobruk-based parliament for presidential elections first. This was eventually signed into law by parliament speaker Aguila Saleh but rejected by Mishri who said that law  “could be interpreted to mean that the House of Representatives does not want to leave the political scene.”

He added that some of the provisions in this bill “may also be interpreted as meaning that the speaker of parliament (Aguila Saleh) wants to run in these elections, and if he does not win, he will return to his position.”

Source: The Arab Weekly

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

https://thearabweekly.com/unsure-libyas-upcoming-presidential-elections-islamists-prefer-delay-them

--------

Libya’s eastern-based parliament withdraws confidence from unity government

21 September ,2021

Libya’s eastern-based parliament on Tuesday passed a no-confidence vote in the country’s unity government, in a new blow to UN-backed peace efforts.

Eighty-nine of the 113 MPs present in the eastern city of Tobruk voted to withdraw confidence from the Tripoli-based administration of interim Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibah, a spokesman said.

The escalation came amid growing tensions between Dbeibah’s Tripoli-based administration and the House of Representatives in the east, three months ahead of planned national elections.

Speaker Aguila Saleh earlier this month ratified an electoral law seen as bypassing due process and favoring eastern-based military general Khalifa Haftar.

The High Council of State, the parliament’s upper house in Tripoli, had rejected that legislation on Monday.

The law had been passed “without a legal vote or consensus,” the HCS said, calling for presidential elections to be postponed for a year.

The council also reacted quickly to Tuesday’s vote.

“The HCS rejects the no-confidence measure against the national unity government,” a spokesman said, adding that the vote contravened an agreement signed in the Moroccan town of Skheirat in 2015.

Dbeibah’s transitional administration took office in February with a mandate to guide the North African country to elections on December 24, part of a United Nations-led process aimed at ending a decade of violence following the fall and killing of former Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/north-africa/2021/09/21/Libya-s-eastern-based-parliament-withdraws-confidence-from-unity-government

--------

Morocco elections: After the Islamists' fall, a stagnant political system remains

Kamal Abdul Latif

21 Sep, 2021

In the Moroccan election, which took place on 8 September, the resounding defeat of the Islamist-led governing coalition was long expected by those who follow Moroccan politics: the policies adopted, positions taken and battles fought during the ten years in which the Justice and Development Party (PJD) was the majority party in government (2011-2021) are to blame for the party’s decline while the religious overtones the party adopted in all its communications with the public at large did nothing to change this.

Since Morocco’s independence in 1956, there have been many political and cultural shifts with the rise of the nationalist parties the most potent expression of the changes taking place in Moroccan society in the decades which followed.

Morocco subsequently embraced new values, and many began calling for a separation between religion and state. However, the self-centred ambitions of political leaders repeatedly withheld the development of the political landscape in Morocco.

During the 'rotational government' era between 1998 and 2007, the overriding concern among the politicians involved was to maximise their own material gain and grip on power and they effectively ignored both their own political parties and the needs of wider society.

The PJD conducted itself similarly. Thus, the same PJD that firmly opposed the legalisation of cannabis farming and the normalisation deal with Israel then helped pass these policies, with flimsy justifications for their volte face.

First, the old nationalist parties disintegrated. Then the PJD revealed, during its ten years in charge of the government, that it had no real plan for society, and no vision taking into account the country's history which could respond to the changes going on in Morocco and the world.

It had developed an inflated sense of self, believing in its own wisdom, while most of its leaders were in fact out of touch with what has been happening in Moroccan society, and were not engaged with the internal and external challenges the country was facing.

Elections without programmes

Those who were following the build-up to the elections may have noticed that the main preparation undertaken by most parties was to seek the support of celebrities and other prominent personalities from a wide variety of areas in order to attract voters.

The endorsements of businessmen, property owners, entrepreneurs, tribal sheikhs from rural areas, famous sports personalities, artists, and those with influence in the trade and industrial sectors was eagerly sought by many of the competing political parties who, when possible, chose to nominate these figures as candidates.

In the run-up to the elections, numerous political debates were held in which leading party officials gushed over the status of these celebrities and their important role in society, stressing the importance that they are integrated into elected political institutions. Even though this is not a new phenomenon in Moroccan elections, the extent to which it has become standard practice across the political spectrum points to a shift that has occurred within the political system in recent years.

None of the discussion was about party manifestos or policies: the arguments filling social media focussed on criticising the misuse of funds, as in the last two elections it had focussed on criticising the exploitation of religion and religious populism. It seemed as though these relentless discussions would lead to definitive action being taken to tackle these problems.

However, the elections of 2011 and 2016 did not yield the changes Moroccans were anticipating and likewise no steps were taken to develop the democratisation process in their country. This time around, all the conversation revolved around the ethics of switching political parties, the personal virtues of candidates and good management, and how to win parliamentary seats.

As for the Salafist groups which had formerly sympathised with some of the values claimed by the PJD, they watched, as many others did, the serious errors made during both their terms and did not support them a third time.

Many movements affiliated to the PJD had become overwhelmed with managing divisions stemming from vicious infighting in the PJD itself and the PJD's obsession with its illusory leadership and chasing after quick benefits, and similarly did not come out in the PJD's support.

The party seemed to forget, as did the organisations and associations linked to it, that its self-perception as tightly organised and its constant repetition of "purity and asceticism" were no protection against the temptations that came with high-ranking positions and the accompanying perks and privileges. These temptations made it forget the slogans and principles of its opposition years.

The elections of 8 September ended the era of a party that had believed that it alone could offer a solution, advance towards democratic transition and tackle the "sanctioned tyranny and corruption" of the judicial system. However, during the decade it held power it held firm to its slogan "Reform and Stability", viewing itself as the only party which could provide stability politically and socially.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alaraby.co.uk/opinion/morocco-dont-expect-change-despite-islamists-defeat

--------

Nigeria: Sheikh Zakzaky condoles with families and survivors of Zaria massacre

September 21, 2021

Some families of those killed by the Nigerian military in Zaria in December, 2015 met with the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria [IMN], Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky on Sunday, 19/09/2021 in Abuja.

Sheikh Zakzaky seized the opportunity during the meeting with the invited guests to condole with them over the losses of their loved ones. He urged them to always remember the persecution and hardships meted out to Imam Hussein [AS] when the dreaded army of Yazid besieged and massacre them.

He mentioned to his visitors that no sacrifice is too high when it comes to the path of Allah.

Sheikh Zakzaky also apologized for having to invite some of them, instead of him to go to their houses and condole with them. “Due to the injuries we sustained during the military attack on us, we still carry bullet fragments in our bodies, and there is no way we can meet up with all the victims and the survivors of the brutal military onslaught against us in December 2015,” he added.

For his part, Dr. Isa Waziri Gwantu, who lost four of his children during the Zaria massacre, expressed in a speech gratitude to the Sheikh for inviting the families to meet him in such a difficult circumstance and reiterated their resolve to never abandon the right path being championed by the Sheikh.

Source: ABNA

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

https://en.abna24.com/news//nigeria-sheikh-zakzaky-condoles-with-families-and-survivors-of-zaria-massacre_1181904.html

--------

Sudan failed coup plotters were inside, outside of military: PM Hamdok

21 September ,2021

An attempted coup in Sudan was organized by elements inside and outside the military establishment, leading to the first arrests of those involved in such a plot, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said on Tuesday.

The failed attempt was preceded by attempts to sow insecurity, especially in the east of Sudan, but had failed to undermine the country’s democratic transition, Hamdok said in a televised statement.

“What happened is an orchestrated coup by factions inside and outside the armed forces and this is an extension of the attempts by remnants since the fall of the former regime to abort the civilian democratic transition,” Hamdok said.

“This attempt was preceded by extensive preparations represented by lawless in the cities and the exploitation of the situation in the east of the country, close national roads and ports and block oil production.”

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/21/Sudan-failed-coup-plotters-were-inside-outside-of-military-PM-Hamdok-

--------

Sudan army arrests 21 officers, number of soldiers for attempted coup

21 September ,2021

Sudan's army said it has arrested 21 officers and a number of soldiers in connection to a coup attempt on Tuesday.

The army said it has regained control over all locations that had been controlled by coup attempters, adding that investigations and search is ongoing for the rest of those involved in the coup attempt.

An attempted coup in Sudan was organized by elements inside and outside the military establishment, leading to the first arrests of those involved in such a plot, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok said on Tuesday.

Source: Al Arabiya

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

https://english.alarabiya.net/News/middle-east/2021/09/21/Sudan-army-arrests-21-officers-number-of-soldiers-for-attempted-coup

--------

 

Southeast Asia

 

Sarawak party criticises Putrajaya’s appeal of citizenship ruling

22 Sep 2021

BY SULOK TAWIE

KUCHING, Sept 22 — Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) today said it is appalled and deeply disappointed by the federal government’s move to appeal against a High Court’s ruling that recognised citizenship rights to children born abroad regardless of the Malaysian parents’ gender.

Party president Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh said the party views the move as a big setback towards greater justice and equality for the Malaysian women.

“We are totally against any form of gender discrimination and fully support equal rights for women,” he said in a statement.

He said he concurs with the family support group Family Frontier’s statement that by appealing against the court decision, justice had been delayed not just to Malaysian women, but their children and their extended families as well.

Wong, a former Sarawak’s second minister of finance, said the federal government’s action sent a clear message that it is in favour of the continued discrimination and marginalisation of Malaysian mothers.

“Instead, the federal government has chosen to perpetuate this gross injustice that has plagued Malaysia since independence, the weight of which women from Sarawak have also borne for 58 long years,” he added.

He called on de facto Law Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar to explain his contradicting stand as he was among the first to find the High Court landmark decision “illuminating” but then went along with the Attorney General’s Chambers’ to appeal against the very same ruling.

“This only serves to highlight the many inconsistencies within the federal Cabinet and the glaring weakness of this government’s ability to protect women and children,” Wong claimed.

Separately, Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) Women chief Kho Teck Wan urged the federal government to heed calls by Sultan Ibrahim of Johor and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to not appeal against the court’s ruling.

She said the federal government’s decision to file the appeal not only continues the suffering of some parents, but also discriminates against women and puts a child’s future in jeopardy.

“Children do not choose which country and what parents they will be born into. The unlucky ones end up as stateless and are denied proper education and healthcare, which subsequently cause adverse impact to their prospect and potential as an adult,” she said.

Kho added some even ended up becoming a burden to society.

“I, therefore, would like to concur and reiterate the wishes of our party, NGOs and Johor’s Sultan, and urge the federal government to drop the appeal,” Kho said.

In a landmark decision made on September 9, Kuala Lumpur High Court had ruled that children born overseas to Malaysian mothers with foreign spouses should automatically be conferred Malaysian citizenship.

Source: Malay Mail

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

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/09/22/sarawak-party-criticises-putrajayas-appeal-of-citizenship-ruling/2007430

--------

Pangkor not on domestic travel bubble list as yet to meet some requirements, says Perak exco

22 Sep 2021

BY JOHN BUNYAN

IPOH, Sept 22 — Perak Housing, Local Government and Tourism Committee chairman, Datuk Nolee Ashilin Mohammed Radzi, clarified today that Pangkor Island is not on Malaysia’s latest domestic travel bubble list as the island is yet to fulfil certain requirements.

Nolee stressed, however, that the island will be on the list once these are met.

“I was informed by the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry (Motac) that Pangkor Island is one of the destinations that will be included in the travel bubble for domestic tourism.

“However, the island is yet to meet certain requirements. Among them are the level of operator preparedness and the vaccination rate of the island’s residents,” she told a press conference at the Perak Darul Ridzuan Building here.

Nolee also said that the authorities would need to work out a way to manage entry to the island to avoid crowding and congestion.

“We need to look into the problems that could occur during the digital vaccination certificate inspection and the Covid-19 screening.

“We are working on these issues now and the report is not ready yet. God willing, we will try to expedite this,” she added.

Source: Malay Mail

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

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/09/22/pangkor-not-on-travel-bubble-list-as-yet-to-meet-some-requirements-says-per/2007530

--------

Defence minister: Australia needs to approach Brunei on trilateral partnership between UK, US

22 Sep 2021

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 22 — Apart from approaching Malaysia for trilateral partnership between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States (AUKUS), Senior Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein has urged Australia to reach out to Brunei, the current chair of Asean.

Following his phone conversation with his Australian counterpart Peter Dutton two days ago, Hishammuddin said it was important for Australia to reach out to CLMV countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam) as well as countries close to China to get their views.

In addition, it would suggest that AUKUS is not something that needs to be worried about and could affect the position of the Asean region in the context of defence.

“Our strength is not when we are alone, our strength is when these 10 Asean member countries united to see the position and security of the region be defended.

“I also plan to make a brief visit to China soon and one thing we need to get is the views of the Chinese government, especially on defence and, of course, on AUKUS, and the follow-up action from what has been announced,” he said when winding-up the debate on the motion of thanks for the royal address in the Dewan Rakyat today.

Malaysia has expressed its concern that the security partnership could potentially spark a nuclear arms race in the Indo-Pacific region.

The Prime Minister’s Office, in a statement on September 18, said it was feared that the move would provoke other powers to also act aggressively in the region, especially in the South China Sea.

Source: Malay Mail

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

https://www.malaymail.com/news/malaysia/2021/09/22/defence-minister-australia-needs-to-approach-brunei-on-trilateral-partnersh/2007521

--------

URL:    https://www.newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/zabihullah-mujahid-al-qaida-islamic-state/d/125414


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..