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Islamic World News ( 25 Jan 2012, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Salman Rushdie: Politicians in Bed with Extremists for Electoral Gains

  • New Age Islam News Bureau

    25 Jan 2012
  • Kyrgyzstan prison protest: Inmates sew lips together
  • Furious Rushdie blasts Centre, hits out at 'religious gangsters'
  • NY Police in ‘Third Jihad’ on Muslims
  • Maldives: Female circumcision fear as fundamentalists roll back women's rights
  • Nigeria Struggles with Rise of Radical Islam
  • Suicide Bomber Strikes in Central Somalia
  • Islamic banking: Kyrgyzstan, seize the hour!
  • Report exposes how the police botched up the Jaipur serial blast probe
  • Persecution of Christians Rising in Islamic Countries
  • School blown up, Khasadar official killed in Landikotal, Pakistan
  • Muslim Canadian Congress asks government to expand burka ban
  • Taliban video shows execution of Pakistani soldiers
  • Libya: Q and A on The Hague Court and Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi
  • Violence against Indonesia’s religious minorities surges -HRW
  • Britons Want Inquiry on Anti-Muslim Media
  • Complaints filed over Muhammad cartoons
  • Salman Rushdie is poor, substandard writer: Justice Katju
  • Setback for Gujarat CM, SC orders probe into fake encounters
  •  ‘NATO withdrawal from Kabul will destabilise region’
  • Gulf Arabs quit Syria monitoring mission
  • Istanbul governor to receive Gilani in Turkey
  • Somalia: Western hostages freed in US military raid
  • Pakistan air force jet crashes: Official
  • Egypt protests on anniversary of anti-Mubarak uprising
  • Syria agrees to extend Arab League observer mission
  • Bahrain court rules national safety act 'constitutional'
  • British voice behind a call to arms for Somalia's Islamic terrorists
  • Should the World Help Break Up Nigeria in Order to Save it?
  • Seeds for year-old Egyptian revolution sown long ago
  • The Arab Spring is an Opportunity for Israel
  • Rushdie episode: What's all this noise about?
  • Egypt rallies mark anti-Mubarak uprising anniversary
  • Timeline: Ethnic and religious unrest in Nigeria
  • Colo. Man Charged With Supporting Overseas Terrorist Group
  • Pakistan Foreign policy may be against US wishes: JUI Chief
  • Consultative religious leaders say Muslim countries should not help aggressor in
  • Form of attack on Muslim county
  • Egyptians Shifted to Islamist Parties as Elections Neared
  • Palestinian Media Watchdog: US Tax Dollars Pay Terrorist Who Threatens Jews, Christians
  • Jihadi literature case: Jail officials fail to produce Himayat Baig in court
  • HRW: West should do more to support democracy
  • West urged to support Mideast democracies
  • Rights group urges support for Arab democracies
  • HRW seeks support for democracies after Arab Spring
  • Southampton: Muslim leaders to meet with Bishop
  • Protesters target Ocean City event over speaker's anti-Muslim remarks
  • UK seizes its moment to reform European court of human rights
  • Saudi Arabia Simmers Even During an Arab Winter
  • A summary of sanctions against Iran
  • CAIR Applauds Supreme Court Ruling on GPS Monitoring
  • Palestinians take step toward elections, unity
  • Rushdie India Speech Cancelled Amid Threats
  • Bloomberg blasts use of movie during NYPD training
  • Intelligence Minister: Iran to Maintain Inspiring Role in Muslim World
  • New European Union sanctions target Iran nuclear program
  • Newly-Released Documents Show NYPD Used Anti-Muslim Film for Training
  • U.S. Universities Closely Tied to Qatar Pro-Islamist Faculty
  • U.S. Monopoly: Hindu elites subvert Islamic nations and sovereignty
  • Foreign Office Minister condemns Iran human rights abuses
  • Iran must halt execution of web programmer
  • IFJ Condemns Latest Arrests of Journalists in Iran
  • Egypt to mark first anniversary of anti-Mubarak revolt

Complied by New Age Islam News Bureau

Photo: The prisoners are said to have sewn their lips together to allow only liquids to be consumed



Salman Rushdie: Politicians in bed with extremists for electoral gains


NEW DELHI: Jan 25, 2012, Salman Rushdie, whose Jaipur Litfest video conference was cancelled on Tuesday, expressed disappointment that politicians are in bed with religious extremists groups and hence unwilling to oppose or stop them.

"My overwhelming feeling is a disappointment on behalf of India, which is a country that I have loved all my life and whose long-term commitment to secularism and liberty is something I've praised for much of my life. And now I find an India in which religious extremists can prevent free expression of ideas at a literary festival, in which the politicians are too, let's say, in bed with those groups...for narrow electoral reasons, in which the police forces are unable to secure venues against demonstrators even when they know the demonstration is on its way," said the writer of Midnight's Children and the controversial Satanic Verses in an interview with NDTV.

Religious extremists were the real enemies of Islam, Rushdie said. The writer said, "The real enemies of Islam are the leaders, the Deobandis, the various extremist leaders and their followers, who behave like this, because what they do is to strengthen the extremely negative image of Islam as an intolerant, repressive, and violent culture, as an ideology masquerading as a gentle faith, whereas actually what happens every time it's crossed, or every time it dislikes something, is that it resorts to threats and violence. People like this, who behave like this, are the ones who feed that image and they are the ones responsible for the negative views of Islam in the world, and they should be called the enemies of the faith."

Rushdie felt it was ironical that The Satanic Verses was banned in India whereas it was available in 50 other countries, including Turkey, Egypt and, now, Post-Gaddafi Libya. "We live in the information age in which information moves freely. And no matter what this gang of protesters tries to do, they will not prevent the dissemination of my novel, which is published all over the world, I think in more than 50 languages and, by the way, is legally published, in my certain knowledge, in Turkey and Egypt, and recently, after the fall of the Gaddafi regime, it was un-banned in Libya. So you have several Muslim countries in which the novel is freely able to be sold and read without any trouble. And yet, in India; this was the first country in the world to ban the book and after 23 and a half years that ban still survives. If Libya can do this, Turkey can do this, Egypt can do this, does India want to be a totalitarian state like China or does it want to move in the right direction towards liberty and the open discussion of ideas?"

Rushdie added that the whole episode was a scandalous but it will not stop him from coming to India. "I will come to India as many times as I choose to.

Do what I will and I will not allow these religious gangsters and their cronies in the government to prevent deal with it."

He also said, "I thought the whole thing was fantastically fishy. I think that from the moment, the way in which the Congress Party...the way in which Congress officials, and many other party officials of other parties, all stated their opposition to my coming, I felt quite clear that some way would be found to prevent me from coming. And in the end, sadly it was."


Kyrgyzstan prison protest: Inmates sew lips together

25 Januar, 2012

The prisoners are said to have sewn their lips together to allow only liquids to be consumed

More than 1,300 Kyrgyz prisoners have sewn their lips together as part of an ongoing protest at poor living conditions, say officials.

Nearly 7,000 are already on hunger strike. Their latest move came in response to an official decision to force-feed them, reports said.

The protest follows a riot last week in which at least one person was killed.

"They are demanding that state prison authorities and guards stop beatings," a human rights official said.

"They are worried that if they stop their hunger strike they will be beaten again," Tursunbek Akun said.

He described the situation of the protesting prisoners as "catastrophic".

But authorities say the protest has been orchestrated by criminal gang leaders who oppose new tighter regulations inside prisons, reports the BBC's Central Asia correspondent Rayhan Demytrie.

Let them all sew shut their mouths”

Sheishenbek Baizakov

Head of Kyrgyz penitentiary services

Hundreds of prisoners have joined the latest protest, which according to reports involves sewing their lips together in such a way that only liquids can be consumed.

Relatives' picket

One of the prisoners' demands is said to be the lifting of restrictions on their movement, but this demand was dismissed by the head of the penitentiary services, Sheishenbek Baizakov.

Prisoners would no longer "be able to make fools of the guards", he said at a news conference in the capital Bishkek, according to AFP news agency.

"Let them all sew shut their mouths."

Mr Baizakov's resignation has been demanded by prisoners' relatives, who have been picketing the parliament building every day since 16 January - the day of the deadly prison riot said to have triggered the protest.

Kyrgyzstan is a former Soviet nation of 5.5 million which hosts a US air base key to US operations in nearby Afghanistan.

Its jails are notoriously overcrowded and teeming with disease, reports say.


Furious Rushdie blasts Centre, hits out at 'religious gangsters'


NEW DELHI: Jan 24, 2012, Furious over the cancellation of his video address to Jaipur Literature Festival, Salman Rushdie on Tuesday slammed the central and Rajasthan governments, saying the buck stops with it for the "awful" situation and questioned the commitment of Congress over the issue.

The controversial India-born author also hit out at the Muslim groups opposed to him and wondered whether India was moving towards totalitarianism like China by allowing extremist groups to dictate terms.

He asserted that he would come to India whenever his busy schedule permits without allowing "these religious gangsters and their cronies in the government to stop me" and asked the government to "deal with it".

Soon after his much-anticipated video address was cancelled at the last moment because of fears of violence, Rushdie tweeted, "Awful.

Threat of violence by Muslim groups stifled free speech today." The author, who has been castigated by certain Muslim groups for his 23-year-old book 'Satanic Verses', underlined "In a true democracy all get to speak, not just the ones making threats."

The decision to call off the address came after a meeting festival organisers had with leaders of Muslim organisations.

"The fact that Indian government could not defend my desire to come there means the buck stops with the government. The Rajasthan government behaved as it did. This is a scandalous state of affairs," Rushdie told a news channel.

Inferring that he was disallowed from coming to India or even address the festival because of the Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, he said, "I have some skepticism about how genuine their (government's) commitment was. It was very convenient to everyone in the Congress that I not come just before the UP vote."

The way in which the Congress party in government, or in Rajasthan, and many other parties all stated their opposition, I felt confident that some way would be found to prevent me from coming. And sadly it was," Rushdie said. "I will come to India many times, do what I want and will not allow these religious gangsters and their cronies in the government to stop me. I will come most certainly and many times; most certainly so deal with it," he said.

The renowned author said he was at a loss to understand why he was disallowed from coming to India when he had already done so a number of times earlier and questioned the argument of threats from fundamentalists as projected.

"Everyone says it's connected to the UP elections and the desire to collect Muslim votes... I have been coming and going a lot. Suddenly, let alone my physical presence, even on screen is unacceptable. Shocking," he observed.

Asked who should be blamed, he replied "in a society, you can't compartmentalise blame. It's the responsibility of everyone.... Currently the leaders who claim to be leaders of Muslims are at fault. The fact that the political system wants to placate those leaders, that is the fault of the political system."

On reports of threat to his life, he said, "It seems incredibly fishy to me. I feel like fool to have given in."

Referring to the names of those who were reportedly paid to target him if he visited India, Rushdie said two of the three were "non-existent" names. "The Centre denied it. The Mumbai Police denied it. Some in Rajasthan denied it. But I was sent this (email) with knowledge of senior officials. It is a very, very poor state of affairs," he said.

At the same time, he agreed that his presence in India could have caused threat to "everyone" at the festival. He, however, added that a vast majority of Muslims "does not give a damn whether I come or go. They have their concerns about their economic situation, prospects in the country."


NY Police in ‘Third Jihad’ on Muslims

25 January 2012

CAIRO – A training film material used by the New York police that accuses Muslims of launching a holy war against the West is sparking a storm of condemnations in the United States, amid accusations that the world's largest police force is sowing fears of Muslims in the country.

“The training of the world’s largest city police force is an important question,” Faiza Patel, a director at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School which obtained the documents under Freedom of Information law, told The New York Times on Tuesday, January 24.

“The police have shown an explosive documentary to its officers and simply stonewalled us.”

News broke out that the New York Police Department (NYPD) had used a film titled “The Third Jihad” in training more than a thousand officers.

A police officer initially denied the report, but later said that the film had been mistakenly screened “a couple of times” for a few officers.

But internal police documents, obtained under the state’s Freedom of Information Law, showed that the film was shown “on a continuous loop” for between three months and one year of training for nearly 1,500 officers.

The 72-minute film, which includes an interview with Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, claims that there were three jihads: One at the time of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him), a second in the Middle Ages and a third that is underway covertly in the West today.

It starts with ominous music playing as images show "Muslim terrorists" shoot Christians in the head, car bombs explode, executed children lie covered by sheets and a doctored photograph showing an Islamic flag flying over the White House.

“This is the true agenda of much of Islam in America,” a narrator intones.

“A strategy to infiltrate and dominate America… This is the war you don’t know about.”

The film is funded by Clarion Fund, a non-profit group that shares officials with Aish HaTorah, an Israeli organization that opposes any land concessions in the West Bank.

Its previous documentary attacking Muslims’ “war on the West” attracted support from the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, a major supporter of Israel who has been pouring millions of dollars into a so-called super PAC that backs Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich.

The producer of “The Third Jihad,” Raphael Shore, also works with Aish HaTorah.

Sowing Fears

Human rights advocates and Muslim leaders accused the NYPD of sowing fears of Muslims among Americans.

“It defiled our faith and misrepresented everything we stood for,” Zead Ramadan, the New York president of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, told The New York Times.

The news of the film was revealed to Tom Robbins, a former columnist with The Village Voice, who was contacted by a Muslim police officer who spoke of his unease with the film in January 2010.

When the news broke out last year, Paul J. Browne, the Police Department’s chief spokesman, called it a “wacky film” that had been shown “only a couple of times when officers were filling out paperwork before the actual course work began.”

Yet, the officer said the video was shown continuously “during the sign-in, medical and administrative orientation process.”

“The officer was completely offended by it as a Muslim,” Ramadan said.

Later on, the Police Academy informed Browne that back on March 23, 2011, that the film had been viewed by 68 lieutenants, 159 sergeants, 31 detectives and 1,231 patrol officers.

At this point, the Brennan Center launched its nine-month legal battle to obtain this information.

“The department’s response was to deny it and to fight our request for information,” Patel of the Brennan Center said.

“It suggests a broader problem that they refuse to divulge this information much less to discuss it.”

Anger has grown against the New York police recently following reports that the NYPD used undercover agents to spy on Muslim communities.

A report by the Associated Press said that the NYPD sent out undercover officers into ethnic communities to track daily life and monitor mosques as well as Muslim student organizations.

However, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended the practice, saying it does not take religion into account in its policing.

Police commissioner Raymond W. Kelly also denied targeting Muslims in its policing, saying it only followed leads.


Maldives: Female circumcision fear as fundamentalists roll back women's rights

January 25, 2012

Ben Doherty from Male.

When the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, visited the Maldives late last year, she urged that the practice of flogging women for having sex outside marriage - while very rarely punishing men for the same - should be abolished.

''This practice constitutes one of the most inhumane and degrading forms of violence against women,'' she told local reporters then.

The response was as fierce as it was unexpected. The next day protesters rallied outside the UN building, carrying placards that read ''Ban UN'' and ''Islam is not a toy'' and threatened to ''Flog Pillay''. A website later promised to ''slaughter anyone against Islam''.

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Similar protests have followed, and a growing religious divide between moderate and fundamentalist Muslims - constitutionally, all Maldivians are obliged to follow Islam - has led many to question the direction of religion in the Maldives and, in particular, the place of women in Maldivian society.

In an interview with the Herald, the Maldivian President, Mohamed Nasheed, conceded an emergent religious fundamentalism had changed the way women were viewed, and treated, in his country.

He said he was distressed by religious groups who campaigned for girls to be circumcised or to be kept home from school.

''We were a matriarchal society. Our inheritance, also, in the past was from women. But, with a new kind of radical Islam, the perceptions some of them have on women are not familiar to many Maldivians,'' Mr Nasheed said.

Anecdotal reports suggest female circumcision is undergoing a resurgence in the Maldives, particularly on the outer islands, where local imams hold significant influence.

Shadiya Ibrahim, member of the newly formed Gender Advocacy Working Group and a long-time campaigner for women's rights, said Maldivian society was growing more oppressive towards women.

''Being a woman is harder now. The religious Wahhabist scholars preach more forcefully than anyone else can. They have this backing of religion as a tool.

''No one can make the argument to have a more liberal, a more positive attitude towards women. Day by day, it is becoming harder for women to live in this country,'' she said.

Ms Ibrahim said women were excluded from positions of power, from taking jobs and even from education, particularly beyond primary level.

The practice of flogging women for extramarital sex was common across the Maldives, she said.

''It happens everywhere. Normally, this punishment is given when you give birth, which is why it is almost always women. If you have 140-odd women being flogged, you have only two or three men.'' The flogging is public and done with a paddle or a cane, and is intended more to humiliate than to cause serious injury.

Ms Ibrahim said flogging was accepted by many Maldivians, and there were other, more serious issues emerging, including a growing number of instances of sexual violence.

''This week, there have been two cases of a gang rape of [a] minor, one 16-year-old, one 12-year-old and, very often, while there is an effort to catch the perpetrators, eventually, the media will turn it into 'the girl was wearing this', 'the girl had gone there','' he said.

Domestic violence is common. A nationwide survey done in 2007 found one in three Maldivian women had been abused, sexually or physically.

Aneesa Ahmed, president of advocacy organisation Hope for Women, said a domestic violence bill before the Maldivian parliament would raise awareness of an issue rarely discussed in the Maldives. But the legislation has been stuck in parliament more than 14 months. Only five of the Maldives' 77 parliamentarians are women.

Ms Ahmed said Maldivian women's control over their lives was being eroded. ''Men in the Maldives feel that the women's role is reproductive and in the home. That's what women should do and that's all we should do.''

Read more:


Nigeria Struggles With Rise of Radical Islam

January 24, 2012

Witnesses at the house in Kano, Nigeria, security forces surrounded the house, forcing their way inside, killing a man and a pregnant woman while searching for members of a radical Islamist sect known as Boko Haram, January 24, 2012.

A series of bomb attacks by Nigeria's radical Islamist sect Boko Haram is challenging President Goodluck Jonathan's government.  The pace of the bombings has picked up in recent weeks, with attacks on police stations in the northern city of Kano and a Christmas Day suicide bombing at a Catholic church near the capital, Abuja. 

In the entry way of St. Theresa's church in Madalla, one can see worshippers coming in for Sunday mass just as they did on Christmas Day.  But outside in the churchyard a scene of destruction remains - twisted metal, chunks of concrete, burned out trees and a huge hole in the road where a vehicle was stopped and detonated by the suicide bomber who killed so many people. 

Full Report At:


Suicide Bomber Strikes in Central Somalia

January 24, 2012

Somali militant group al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for a suicide attack on an Ethiopian army base in Somalia Tuesday.

Witnesses say the bomber rammed a truck filled with explosives into a government compound in the town of Beledweyne, about 30 kilometers from the Ethiopian border.

The building houses Somali government officials and Ethiopian troops, who helped the government seize control of Beledweyne from al-Shabab last month.

Full Report At:


Islamic banking: Kyrgyzstan, seize the hour!


Economic processes slow down across the world for recent half year. Debt crisis deepens embracing new European countries. Fitch, S&P and Moody's warn that not only banks of Spain, Greece, and Portugal are at risk but biggest backbone banks of Germany, Austria, Great Britain and France. Their bankruptcy is fraught with collapse of Eurozone.

China also concerns in a new wave of the crisis. Bloomberg Poll questioned 1,097 investors whereof 61 percent are waiting for collapse of the banking system. And only every tenth believes China will manage to escape problems.

A new world recession is looming. Some experts think that forthcoming crisis will be more amplitudinous than those which world survived in 2008. Best financial experts of Europe and America break their heads over how to elude the worst scenario.

Orients’ treasure

While they are reflection on the Islamic financing gathers pace. Islamic banks survived the crisis with minimal losses showing sufficient high growth at 15-20 percent per year. Experts believe that Islamic model of economy may become a decision of problems emerged from the global financial crisis. Today over 400 world financial institutions practice Islamic banking and their annual turnovers make up around $1 trillion. Deutsche Bank reports the volume of Islamic finances will almost double up to $1.8 trillion by 2016. Standard & Poor's expects increments of assets at the level of $2.8 trillion.

In a short, the system proves its value. Many countries of Old and New World realized this and the U.S. Switzerland, Great Britain and Germany have begun launching Islamic financing model.

Islamic financing is operating in Kyrgyzstan for 5 years and it demonstrates its value in practice. Share of Islamic financing in June 2011 reached 5 percent of all banks credit resources of the republic. And it will increase up to 10-12 percents by 2015 according to experts.

A lawyer never goes to law himself

“Islamic banks across the world successfully got over crisis as they rest upon other principles distinct from traditional credit activities,” an adviser on business development to the Board of Directors of EcoIslamicBank OJSC, Shamil Murtazaliev, tells.

He says that Islamic economic system bans profiteering, bank interest rates and any enrichment without creation of a real commodity or an actual cost service.

He notes money in Islamic economy is not a commodity but just means of exchange. A profit can be fairly earned only through trade or through partly risk-taking. “Islamic economic system pays special attention to human relations and moral principles of economic relationships that must contribute into prosperity of the society in whole, not separate individuals. A principle of social fairness is cornerstone of Islamic principles,” the banker says. He believes the world will realize the supremacy of Islamic economic system over economic model of speculative capital.

The difference of Islamic banking from traditional one is absence of loan interest. There are other financial and profit earning instruments.

“Murabahah, mudarabah, sharika”

These are major financial operations in Islamic banking. Murabahah means a particular kind of sale, where the seller expressly mentions the cost he has incurred on the commodities for sale and sells it to another person by adding some profit or mark-up thereon which is known to the buyer. Mudarabah is a special kind of partnership where one partner gives money to another for investing it in a commercial enterprise. Profits generated are shared between the parties according to a pre-agreed ratio. Sharika means partnership between a bank and a client and the profits are shared among the parties on the basis of their participation or on a pre-agreed ratio and the losses are shared on the basis of equity participation.

Besides, Islamic economy bans activity which is in conflict with Sharia: alcohol, drugs, gambling business as well as bonds, bank lending and investments into companies whose loan indebtedness is a major source of financing.

Golden rain

Kyrgyzstan has done a lot to launch Islamic banking but it is ahead to do more. Financiers plan to implement Islamic assurance, Islamic paper securities and other financial instruments. Improvement of legislation and political will of the Government are needed to do that.

“This will help to attract investments of richest countries of Arabia, Malaysia and other Muslim countries into economy of the republic,” Shamil Murtazaliev believes. “Representatives of 57 countries work in Islamic Development Bank (IDB) and there is a country competition among them where everybody lobbies interests of his state. Kyrgyzstan joined Islamic Development Bank recently and it is important to push forward interests of the republic for further development of Islamic banking”.

Dozen of largest IDB countries controls 70 percents of world energy resources and has accumulated substantial funds there. And now they are needed to make use of them including outside their countries within diversification of the economics.

In this context Islamic banking for Kyrgyzstan, having great potential for attraction of investments, must be considered as one of priorities in development of the banking sector of the country.


Report exposes how the police botched up the Jaipur serial blast probe

January 25, 2012

Dr Ishaq's medical practice is ruined and so is Dr Yunus's. Dr Yunus's family, which includes his wife and four children, survive accepting support and charity.

Taufeeq, Dr Ishaq's son and an accused in the Jaipur blast case, was halfway through his Bachelor of Unani Medicine and Surgery course when he was illegally incarcerated.  

Nadeem's small grocery shop has collapsed, while Nazakat was the sole breadwinner of the family after his father passed away -- barely a month before his arrest. His shop that sold tractor parts lies desolate today.

Amanullah's mobile phone business could not recover after his release from prison.

Torture and confinement led many of them to the brink of mental illness. These are some of the men who were arrested and put behind bars for their alleged role in the 2008 Jaipur blasts.

Full Report At:


Persecution of Christians Rising in Islamic Countries

By Tzippe Barrow

25 January 2012

JERUSALEM, Israel -- With Islamists poised to take over governments overthrown during the "Arab spring," Christians and other minorities may soon be subject to Sharia (Islamic) law.

Some say assurance by Islamist groups, such as the Muslim Brotherhood, Salafis, and Ennahda, that non-Muslims would not be mistreated under Sharia is, at best, questionable.

In Egypt, attacks on Coptic Christians have increased exponentially since the fall of Hosni Mubarak's regime last year.

Egyptian Christians have been beaten, shot and stabbed to death, and their homes and churches have been fire bombed by angry Muslims.

On Monday, Egypt's Islamist-dominated parliament held its first session. The Muslim Brotherhood now holds 47 percent of the seats, and the Salafist al-Nour party 25 percent.

Syrian Christians have also come under increasing persecution.

"The Christian community in Syria has been hit by a series of kidnappings and brutal murders; 100 Christians have now been killed since the anti-government unrest began," the Jerusalem Post quoted the Pakistan Christian Post.

According to the report, two Christians were gunned down recently at a bakery. In a separate incident, three attackers killed a Christian as he drove with two young children in the car.

Full Report At:


School blown up, Khasadar official killed in Landikotal

January 25, 2012

LANDIKOTAL: A Khasadar official was killed in an explosion on Tuesday while he was inspecting a school building that had been damaged in an earlier explosion on Monday night in Landikotal. On Monday, militants blew up the building of Government Primary School Khalo Khan in Shinwari, Landikotal, with explosives. Khasadar official Murtaza Shinwari was killed while his colleague Waliullah and a resident, Abdullah, were injured when a team of Khasadar force was inspecting the damaged building. The administration has reportedly arrested the school watchman to probe the explosions. The funeral of Murtaza Shinwari, who has left behind a widow, a son and two daughters, was offered at the graveyard of Peero Khel tribe. Official sources said at least 23 schools had been destroyed by militants in Landikotal, while the number has climbed to 78 in Khyber Agency. sudhir ahmad afridi\01\25\story_25-1-2012_pg7_6


Muslim Canadian Congress asks government to expand burka ban

By Andy Radia

23 Jan, 2012

A little more than a month ago, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney took a political risk.

On December 12 the Alberta MP, rumoured to have leadership aspirations, issued a ban that prohibits Muslim women from wearing the burka and niqab while taking the oath of citizenship.

By doing so, Kenney risked insulting the Muslim community and alienating his party's  'ethnic supporters' which he worked so hard to attract.

But alas, it seems Kenney's risk was a calculated one.

According to reports in the National Post and the Toronto Sun, a prominent grassroots Muslim organization paid tribute to Kenney, Sunday at an event at a Toronto Hotel.

The Muslim Canadian Congress (MCC) hosted the shindig and threw praise at the Minister.

"You have taken a very courageous step in banning the burka from citizenship ceremonies," Farzana Khan, former MCC president, told the minister.

She then asked the minister to go a step further and introduce legislation similar to Quebec's Bill - 94 which essentially bars Muslim women from receiving or delivering public services while wearing a niqab.

"Invoking religious freedoms to conceal one's identity and promote political ideology is disingenuous," she said.

Full Report At:


Taliban video shows execution of Pakistani soldiers

25 January 2012

PESHAWAR, Pakistan – Taliban militants have released a video showing the execution of 15 Pakistani soldiers whose bodies were found earlier this month after they were kidnapped in northwestern Pakistan.

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan had claimed responsibility for the killings.

The 15 FC (Frontier Constabulary) personnel were kidnapped late last month after a night-time raid on a checkpoint in the northwestern town of Tank.

Pakistan’s seven tribal districts near the Afghan border, including North Waziristan, are rife with homegrown insurgents and are strongholds of Taliban and Al-Qaeda operatives.

The 2.38 minute video, a copy of which was obtained by AFP, was released late Saturday and shows the blindfolded soldiers sitting in three rows on a hillside.

The soldiers had their hands tied behind their backs and were flanked by two masked gunmen.

Full Report At:


Libya: Q and A On the Hague Court and Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi

23 January 2012

The International Criminal Court (ICC) judges granted arrest warrants on June 27, 2011, for Muammar Gaddafi, his son Saif al-Islam, and former intelligence chief Abdullah Sanussi in an investigation authorized by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1970. The three were wanted on charges of crimes against humanity for their roles in attacks on civilians, including peaceful demonstrators, in Tripoli, Benghazi, Misrata, and other locations in Libya. Consistent with Resolution 1970, the ICC warrants apply only to events in Libya beginning on February 15, 2011.

Full Report At:


Violence against Indonesia’s religious minorities surges -HRW

24 Jan 2012

By Thin Lei Win

BANGKOK (AlertNet) – Violence against religious minorities surged in Indonesia in 2011, with authorities standing aside and failing to uphold the rule of law as Islamist mobs attacked Christians and Ahmadis, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in its annual report on the country.

The report, part of a larger HRW publication monitoring human rights in more than 90 countries, also said violence continued to rack Papua and West Papua. The report said the authorities used excessive force against peaceful protesters in these Indonesian provinces, where a low-level separatist insurgency has been going on for decades.

Elaine Pearson, the group’s deputy Asia director, said attacks on religious minorities and police violence in Papua “got a lot worse in 2011.”

“The common thread is the failure of the Indonesian government to protect the rights of all its citizens,” she said.

Full Report At:


Britons Want Inquiry on Anti-Muslim Media

25 January 2012

CAIRO – Lawmakers, human rights advocates and Muslim leaders have joined hands to call for a public inquiry into distorting media coverage of Muslims and their faith in Britain.

“An alternative inquiry is necessary to investigate what many regard as widespread and systematic discriminatory practices in reporting on Muslims and Islam in the British media,” they said in a joint letter cited by the Guardian.

Full Report At:


Complaints filed over Muhammad cartoons

by Sydney Saubestre

24 JAN 2012

On 16th January the Students’ Union received an official complaint from two students at the LSE that the LSE Students’ Union Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society (ASH Society) posted cartoons, depicting the Prophet Muhammad “having a pint,” on their society’s Facebook page.  The Students’ Union has since received “over 40 separate official complaints from the student body.” Several students within the LSE community have publicly and privately denounced the perceived proliferation of Islamophobic sentiments on campus.

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Salman Rushdie is poor, substandard writer: Juctice Katju

Jan 25, 2012

Katju went on to add that the "whole problem with the so-called educated Indians of today is that they still suffer from the colonial inferiority complex".

NEW DELHI: Salman Rushdie is a "poor" and "substandard writer" who would have remained largely unknown but for his controversial book 'Satanic Verses', according to Markandey Katju, till recently a judge of the Supreme Court.

Katju, who is now the Chairman of Press Council of India, criticised the admirers of India-born author based in Britain, saying they suffered from "colonial inferiority complex" that a writer living abroad has to be great.

"Salman Rushdie dominated the Jaipur Literature Festival. I do not wish to get into the controversy whether banning him was correct or not. I am raising a much more fundamental issue," he said in a statement here.

"I have read some of Rushdie's works and am of the opinion that he is a poor writer, and but for 'Satanic Verses' would have remained largely unknown. Even 'Midnight's Children' is hardly great literature," Katju contended.

He went on to add that the "whole problem with the so-called educated Indians of today is that they still suffer from the colonial inferiority complex. So whoever lives in London and New York must be a great writer, while writers living in India are inferior."

On the controversy surrounding Rushdie during the festival which ended yesterday, he said, "I am not in favour of religious obscurantism. But neither do I wish to elevate a sub-standard writer into a hero."


Setback for Gujarat CM, SC orders probe into fake encounters

25 January 2012

NEW DELHI: In yet another setback to Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, the Supreme Court on Wednesday directed a panel headed by former apex court Judge M B Shah to investigate over 20 cases of alleged fake gunbattle killings in the state between 2003 and 2006.

The apex court bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam said that it was open to the monitoring authority headed by Justice Shah to constitute its own investigating team of police officers from within and outside the state.

However, the court said the monitoring authority would steer clear of the cases that are already under investigation on the directions of the apex court or the Gujarat high court.

The order says that the monitoring authority would submit its first report on the progress of the investigation into the fake gunbattle cases in three months' time.


‘NATO withdrawal from Kabul will destabilise region’

25 January 2012

ISLAMABAD:  January 25, 2012,Experts in a discussion organised by the Institute of Regional Studies (IRS) on Tuesday said that a premature withdrawal of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) from Afghanistan would destabilise the region.

The participants called for addressing Pakistan’s genuine concerns with regard to the impending withdrawal of NATO-led forces from Afghanistan. Royal Danish Defence College Institute for Strategy Director Ole Kvaernoe expressed his concern over the situation in Afghanistan, saying that a premature withdrawal of NATO-led forces was not in the interest of Afghanistan. Prof Nazir Hussain of the Quaid-e-Azam University (QAU) School of Political and International Studies maintained that the West had grossly misunderstood Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan. He added that Pakistan wanted a stable and prosperous Afghanistan. Hussain cautioned against a policy that would not take into account internal dynamics of the Afghan state and society. He argued that Afghanistan and Pakistan were closely interlinked and even interdependent, which should not be compromised for a greater Indian role there. He criticised overemphasis on the military strategy at the cost of political reconciliation in Afghanistan.\01\25\story_25-1-2012_pg7_14


Gulf Arabs quit Syria monitoring mission

25 January 2012

BEIRUT:January 25, 2012, Saudi Arabia’s Gulf allies joined Riyadh on Tuesday in pulling out of an Arab League monitoring team to Syria, risking the collapse of a mission whose presence has not halted violence in a 10-month-old revolt against President Bashar al-Assad.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem said his government was still considering whether to let the monitors stay for another month, and criticised the Arab League for calling Assad to step down.

“Definitely the solution in Syria is not the solution suggested by the Arab League, which we have rejected,” he told a news conference.

“They have abandoned their role as the Arab League and we no longer want Arab solutions to the crisis.”

Syria is becoming ‘an Arab and international’ pariah for its harsh response to an uprising against Assad in which thousands of civilians, soldiers and policemen have been killed.

Envoys to the Cairo-based League would later meet to discuss whether the monitoring mission has a future, Sudan’s ambassador to the 22-member body, Kamal Hassan Ali, said.

Full Report at:\01\25\story_25-1-2012_pg7_9


Istanbul governor to receive Gilani in Turkey

25 January 2012

ISLAMABAD:  January 25, 2012, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan telephoned Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Tuesday, a day before his (Gilani’s) scheduled arrival in Davos to participate in the Word Economic Forum. The Turkish PM told Gilani that the Istanbul governor would receive him (Gilani) when his aircraft makes a technical stopover at the Istanbul airport today.

Erdogan also informed Gilani that he would visit Pakistan in May this year.

The PM told his Turkish counterpart that Pakistan would be convening the Economic Cooperation Council meeting in March to enhance trade and economic relations between the two countries. He also conveyed his best wishes for the wife and daughter of the Turkish PM, who in return said he had the highest regard for Gilani, who was like a brother to him. PM Gilani appreciated the brotherly gesture of his counterpart and said he was looking forward to welcoming him in Pakistan in May. staff report\01\25\story_25-1-2012_pg7_19


Somalia: Western hostages freed in US military raid

25 January 2012

Two foreign aid workers kidnapped in Somalia three months ago have been freed in a rare US military raid.

US officials have confirmed that elite US Navy Seals were dropped into Somalia to carry out the overnight operation which resulted in a shoot-out.

The two hostages were freed uninjured, although nine of their captors are said to have been killed. No casualties have been reported among US forces.

The hostages - a US woman and a Danish man - were seized on 25 October.

BBC Security correspondent Frank Gardner says Wednesday's rescue is the highest profile US action in Somalia since it pulled its forces out of the country in 1994.

US officials said the pair's captors were "criminals" rather than Islamist al-Shabab militants.

Vice President Joe Biden said the bravery of the special operations team "takes your breath away"

More than 150 people are still being held hostage in Somalia - mostly sailors from ships seized for ransom by pirates.

They include a UK tourist and two Spanish medics who were abducted in neighbouring Kenya.

Full Report At:


Pakistan air force jet crashes: Official

Jan 25, 2012

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistan Air Force aircraft crashed during a training mission on Wednesday but the pilots baled out safely, an air force spokesman said.

A woman trainee pilot and the instructor managed to escape, he said adding that "both are safe."

It was the third air force jet to crash in training in three months. Two pilots were killed in the other incidents and a helicopter crash last June killed four military personnel.

The Pakistan Air Force has a fleet of Chinese aircraft, including F-7PGs and A-5s, plus US-built F-16s and French Mirages. It recently acquired medium-tech JF-17 or Thunder jets, manufactured jointly by China and Pakistan.


Egypt protests on anniversary of anti-Mubarak uprising

25 January 2012

The head of the ruling military council has announced the decades-old state of emergency will be lifted partially, but still apply to cases of "thuggery".

The first post-Mubarak elections returned a parliament dominated by Islamist parties.

Mr Mubarak is currently on trial.

He is accused of ordering the killing of demonstrators during last year's unrest. He denies the charges.

Full Report At:


Syria agrees to extend Arab League observer mission

25 January 2012

Mr Muallem had earlier criticised the decision of Gulf countries to pull out of the mission

Syria has agreed to extend the mandate of the Arab League observer mission by a month, Syria's state-run news agency Sana reports.

Foreign Minister Walid Muallem had informed the secretary general of the league of the Syrian government's decision, Sana said.

Full Report At:


Bahrain court rules national safety act 'constitutional'

By Habib Toumi

January 25, 2012

Manama: Bahrain's Constitutional Court on Wednesday rejected a challenge to the constitutionality of provisions in the National Safety Act.

The ruling follows an application by the prime minister to the court on the constitutionality of articles of Royal Decree 18/2011 on the state of national safety.

Bahrain said that the National Safety Act was declared on March 15 after its institutions, economy, citizens and residents had come under threat.

Full Report At:


British voice behind a call to arms for Somalia's Islamic terrorists

25 January 2012

A militant Islamist group in Somalia that has declared its allegiance to al-Qa'ida is using a young British man to file video propaganda from the front lines of the country's civil war to try to draw English-speaking Muslims to the Horn of Africa for jihad, The Independent can reveal.

The man, who remains masked throughout his videos, speaks in fluent English with a clear London accent and presents breathless reports of battles that the militant groups have fought against Somali government and foreign forces.

Intelligence sources and terrorism experts believe the man was either born in Britain or spent considerable time here and that he may have even had some media training before heading abroad to join the militant network.

Full Report At:


Should the World Help Break Up Nigeria in Order to Save it?

25 January 2012

This month, the BBC asked in a trenchant report, "Is Nigeria on the brink?" It's a question that, in my 12 years of Nigeria-watching, I've heard international observers ask about Nigeria many times. Is this latest episode the end-game, the opening act of the collapse of Africa's most populous nation-state -- and the largest supplier of African oil to the United States? It may be, but it's not too late for Nigerians and world leaders to bring about an overdue solution for this long-troubled country. Originally three separate regions that British colonialists united into one untenable country, Nigeria's best solution for its past and present crises might be to split back up.

Full Report At:


Seeds for year-old Egyptian revolution sown long ago

By Ashley Fantz, CNN

January 24, 2012

(CNN) -- Newly elected Egyptian ministers held their first parliamentary session this week, almost a year to the day after the start of historic protests in the capital led to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak. But for all the bravery and resilience the demonstrators showed by withstanding a brutal crackdown as they sang, waved flags and held candlelight vigils for 18 days, the movement began many years before.

Full Report At:


The Arab Spring is an Opportunity for Israel

25 January 2012

Tel Aviv - The Israeli government and security establishment are viewing the sweeping changes in the Middle East and North African region with apprehension. While it is human nature to fear the unknown, the recent developments represent a window of opportunity for reshaping the region.

That is not to say that the dangers facing Israel are imagined; Israel must now contend with the consequences of the removal of its biggest ally in the region, Hosni Mubarak, and face a newly-elected government whose position on matters relating to the Jewish state are uncertain at best.

Full Report At:


Rushdie episode: What's all this noise about?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Salman Rushdie apparently failing to appear at the Jaipur Literary Festival has caused a huge stir. The media is busy in (hysterically) churning out heavily-loaded terms like ‘shameful episode’ and ‘freedom of expression under siege.’ Some known jaundiced writers have gone as far as ‘the betrayal of secular India.’

Casting imaginary horrific scenarios to improve readership or viewership, though distasteful, is an established norm.

Full Report At:


Egypt rallies mark anti-Mubarak uprising anniversary

25 January 2012

Some are celebrating the success of Islamist parties in the first post-Mubarak elections, while others are calling for further political reforms.

The decades-old state of emergency law has been partially lifted to mark the anniversary.

Mr Mubarak is on trial accused of ordering the killing of demonstrators.

He denies the charges.

Full Report At:


Timeline: Ethnic and religious unrest in Nigeria

25 January 2012

2000 - Thousands killed in northern Nigeria as non-Muslims opposed to the introduction of sharia (Islamic law) fight Muslims who demand its implementation in state of Kaduna.

September 2001 - Christian-Muslim violence flares after Muslim prayers in the city of Jos in central Nigeria, with churches and mosques set on fire. At least 1,000 people are killed, according to a report in September 2002 by a panel set up by the government of Plateau state, which includes Jos.

Full Report At:



Colo. Man Charged With Supporting Overseas Terrorist Group

By Allan Lengel

25 January 2012

The FBI arrested a Colorado man over the weekend at Chicago O’Hare Airport on charges of providing and attempting to provide support to a Pakistani-based terrorism group.

Jamshid Muhtorov, aka Abumumin Turkistony, aka Abu Mumin, 35, of Aurora, Colorado, who is a refugee of Uzbekistant.

Authorities charged that Muhtorov indicated that he planned to travel overseas and fight on behalf of the Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), a designated foreign terrorist organization, based in Pakistan.

Full Report At:


Pakistan Foreign policy may be against US wishes: JUI Chief

25 January 2012

JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlurehman said on Tuesday that unlike the past, several parts of the proposed foreign policy would be against the US wishes.

He was addressing a seminar titled “International economic and political crises and responsibilities of religious scholars” organised by Coordination Council of Religious Leaders and Intellectual Pakistan (CCRLIP) here at a local hotel.

On possible US attack against Iran, he said that Pakistan could not bear another conflict.

Former JI chief Qazi Hussain Ahmad, Council of Islamic Ideology chairman Maulana Ahmad Khan Sherani, scholars from various schools of thought besides scholars from foreign and foreign diplomats and others were also present on this occasion.

Addressing the seminar, Qazi Hussain Ahmad said that they would start protests if restoration of NATO supply was sought.

Full Report At:


Consultative religious leaders say Muslim countries should not help aggressor in form of attack on Muslim county

25 January 2012

ISLAMABAD, J (SANA): The religious leaders, Ulema and religious scholars have said that in form of aggression no Muslim country should help the aggressor country against the Muslim country, adding that the laws of all the Islamic countries should be derived from the Quran and Sunnah and leadership should be chosen through election.

The leaders said that the deviation from the constitution should be termed as worst crime like the crime of implementation of Sharia through force, adding that all the Muslim countries should work for ending the sectarianism and investment should be deposited in the Islamic banks.

Full Report At:


Egyptians Shifted to Islamist Parties as Elections Neared

by H.A. Hellyer

January 24, 2012

ABU DHABI -- As Egypt's new parliament begins its work, Gallup surveys reveal many Egyptians went from being undecided to expressing political support for the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafi parties in the weeks and months prior to the parliamentary elections. The Freedom and Justice Party, the official political party of the Muslim Brotherhood, found support among 50% of Egyptians in December. Thirty-one percent expressed support for the Nour Party, the Salafi party. The higher levels of public political support, which rose suddenly after consistent low support, do not necessarily suggest an increase in support for either party's ideology.

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Palestinian Media Watchdog: US Tax Dollars Pay Terrorist Who Threatens Jews, Christians

Tuesday, 24 Jan 2012

By Brett Sandala and John Bachman

Itamar Marcus of Palestinian Media Watch tells Newsmax that American tax dollars are paying the salary of a terrorist who “just called for the killing of Jews in the name of Islam.”

Marcus, the media watchdog’s founder and director, was referring to a video in which Muhammad Ahmad Hussein, the Palestinian Authority’s grand mufti of Jerusalem, “quoted a hadith that said ‘the resurrection won’t happen until the Muslims fight the Jews and kill them.’ And this, of course, is hate speech.”

Full Report At:


Jihadi literature case: Jail officials fail to produce Himayat Baig in court


Wed Jan 25 2012

Pune : Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) S S Bose has written to jail authorities twice for not producing accused Mirza Himayat Inayat Baig for the last four court hearings in a case in which he is accused of allegedly distributing jihadi literature and collecting funds for banned organisation Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). Baig is also an accused in German Bakery blast case of February 13, 2010.

According to advocate Kaynat Ali Shaikh, counsel for Baig, the jail authorities did not produce Baig on January 20 and January 13, 2012 and December 31 and December 7, 2011. Another co-accused in the case is Maulana Shabbir Hussain Gangawali, a maulana with alleged links with Indian Mujahideen (IM).

"While Gangawali (convicted for possession of fake currency) is regularly produced in the court on every hearing, the jail authorities have failed to produce Baig on the last four dates in a row," Shaikh said.

Full Report At:


HRW: West should do more to support democracy

Nadine Marroushi

Sun, 22/01/2012

Western countries should do more to support democracy and human rights in the Arab world, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said today at the release of its 2012 World Report.

The 676-page report was launched for the first time in Cairo, “because it is the capital of the Arab world,” said Kenneth Roth, HRW’s executive director. He was present alongside Heba Morayef, HRW’s Cairo-based Middle East and North Africa (MENA) researcher. The annual review looks at more than 90 countries, but this year’s report focuses on the international community’s reactions to the Arab Spring.

Roth said the report “reaches the sad but unavoidable conclusion that western policy for the Arab world has been one of containment. The West has treated Arab people as if they are to be feared, while promoting democracy elsewhere. In the MENA, they supported an array of autocrats as long as they supported western interests.” These Western interests include limiting the rise of political Islam, protecting Israel, maintaining the flow of oil, and stemming migration to Europe, Roth added.

Full Report At:


West urged to support Mideast democracies

January 23, 2012

The international community should overcome its fear of political Islam in the Middle East and instead embrace the preference of the majority, Human Rights Watch (HRW) says.

Ignoring the increasing popular Islamist parties in the region would violate democratic principles, the rights group said on Sunday while launching its annual World Report 2012 in Cairo.

After facing repression for years, Islamist parties have gained wide support in the aftermath of the uprisings that toppled long-time Arab leaders, especially in the North African countries of Egypt, Libya and Tunisia.

Full Report At:


Rights group urges support for Arab democracies

25 January 2012

CAIRO — Human Rights Watch urged world powers to support the rights of Arab Spring protesters to build real democracies after they ousted long-time strongmen once backed by the West, in its annual report on Sunday.

"Many democracies have allowed their ties with repressive allies to temper their support for human rights in the Arab Spring protests," HRW said in its report, launched in Cairo just three days before the anniversary of the revolt that toppled president Hosni Mubarak.

"Time to abandon the autocrats and embrace rights," says executive director Kenneth Roth.

"The people driving the Arab Spring deserve strong international support to realise their rights and to build genuine democracies. Loyalty to autocratic friends shouldn't stand in the way of siding with democratic reformers."

Full Report At:


HRW seeks support for democracies after Arab Spring

25 January 2012

CAIRO: Human Rights Watch urged world powers to support the rights of Arab Spring protesters to build real democracies after they ousted long-time anti-people and despotic rulers backed by the West, in its annual report on Sunday.

“Many democracies have allowed their ties with repressive allies to temper their support for human rights in the Arab Spring protests,” HRW said in its report, launched in Cairo just three days before the anniversary of the revolt that toppled despotic ruler Hosni Mubarak.

“Time to abandon the autocrats and embrace rights,” says executive director Kenneth Roth.

“The people driving the Arab Spring deserve strong international support to realise their rights and to build genuine democracies.Loyalty to autocratic friends shouldn’t stand in the way of siding with democratic reformers.”

The 676-page report reviews human rights practices around the globe, with summaries of conditions in more than 90 countries and territories based on probes carried out by HRW staff from 2011.

Full Report At:


Southampton: Muslim leaders to meet with Bishop

January 24, 2012


Leaders from Long Island’s Muslim community will meet Thursday with Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) at his Patchogue office to discuss the National Defense Authorization Act.

The act, signed last month by President Barack Obama, is a source of controversy because of provisions that allow the military to detain citizens. Some Muslim leaders have said the provisions are rooted in Islamophobia.


Protesters target Ocean City event over speaker's anti-Muslim remarks

By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun

25 January 2012

Protesters are pressuring Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan to shun a prayer breakfast that features a former high-ranking Army officer who has made anti-Muslim remarks.

Leaders of People for the American Way, a left-leaning advocacy group based in Washington, say they have sent hundreds of emails to town officials this week over retired Lt. Gen. William "Jerry" Boykin's scheduled appearance at the breakfast Thursday.

Boykin, a former senior Pentagon official, bills himself as a warrior for Jesus Christ. He made headlines nationally for describing Muslims as idol-worshipers and comparing the war on terrorism to the biblical fight between Christians and the devil.

Ocean City spokeswoman Donna Abbott said the privately organized mayor's prayer breakfast, a tradition for more than 20 years, uses no tax dollars. Meehan is an invited guest who plans to attend but did not select the speaker, she said.

Michael Keegan, president of People for the American Way, said his group wants the mayor to refuse to attend to the event, or to force the organizer to revoke Boykin's invitation. More than 700 people have emailed Meehan and town officials since Monday through a tool on its website to protest the gathering, according to the group, which says its mission is to advocate for equality, free speech and freedom of religion.

Full Report At:,0,3067607.story


UK seizes its moment to reform European court of human rights

25 January 2012

After the Abu Qatada row, the UK might seem keen to leave the Strasbourg court – but Cameron has something else in mind

Judging by the media fury stoked up over the case of the Islamic cleric Abu Qatada and the "meddling" judges of Strasbourg, the UK's departure from the European court of human rights (ECHR) might appear imminent.

An unsorted backlog of 150,000 cases, the court's reluctance to take into account distinctive legal traditions of member nations and its allegedly over-rigid imposition of abstract human rights concepts have all been offered up as evidence of its dysfunction.

The judges' decision that Abu Qatada could not be deported to Jordan because he might face trial for terrorist offences based on information obtained by torture has been cited as proof that the UK no longer controls its political destiny.

Full Report At:


Saudi Arabia on Edge

Saudi Arabia Simmers Even During an Arab Winter

David Hutchins

January 24th 2012

Anticipating a revolution that was infecting sister nations, Saudi security forces flooded the streets of Riyadh, Qatif, Hofuf and al-Amawiyah. Within days, hundreds were arrested and the protests dissipated. By mid-April, the Saudi pro-democracy protest movement was but a whisper. “On [March 11], I drove through the streets of Riyadh. And you are talking about a war zone,” said Mohammad Fahad Al Qahtani, director of the Saudi Civil and Political Rights Association based out of Jeddah. “Police cruisers. So many people were detained. Many people were thrown into makeshift prisons… buses that were converted into mobile prisons.”

But why has there been no Arab Spring in Saudi Arabia? Are Saudis frightened of the consequences of dissent? Are they politically too apathetic? Are they happy with their socio-economic system? Human rights activists like Qahtani suggest it may be a little of all of the above. And, looking to the future, they say any potential Arab Spring in Saudi Arabia is far off. Saudi Arabia may witness green shoots of aspiration but they won’t sprout a revolution any time soon. Still, many Saudi human rights activists feel there are good reasons for dissent. Saudi citizens live under an absolute monarchy founded in 1932 by King Abdul Aziz Al Saud. Under the established form of government, the King carries out most executive, legislative and judicial functions. The extended royal family controls all major government posts. Political parties and free national elections are legally banned. By many standards, Saudi Arabia may be the Arab country farthest removed from democratic norms.

Full Report At:


A summary of sanctions against Iran

By Josh Levs, CNN

January 23, 2012

Most sanctions from the 1979 hostage crisis were lifted after an accord two years later

Some current U.S. sanctions date back to the 1980s

The United States, the United Nations and the European Union all have sanctions against Iran

(CNN) -- The history of U.S. sanctions against Iran dates as far back as 1979, when hostages were held at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Over the years, the U.S. government has approved other sanctions. In 2010, amid increasing tensions of Iran's nuclear program, the United States instituted sanctions that U.S. officials described as "unprecedented."

The United Nations and the European Union, and other countries around the world also have sanctions against Iran.

Full Report At:


CAIR Applauds Supreme Court Ruling on GPS Monitoring

By Council on American-Islamic Relations

Jan. 23, 2012

WASHINGTON, Jan. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's leading Muslim civil liberties organization, today applauded a unanimous ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court stating that warrantless GPS monitoring of suspects violates the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure.

SEE: Warrants Needed for GPS Monitoring, Supreme Court Rules read the entire decision, visit:

CAIR said the decision, published this morning, held that the installation of a GPS tracking device on a vehicle by law enforcement authorities constitutes a search as defined by the Fourth Amendment and therefore required a warrant. The decision resolves a conflict among lower courts about whether or not law enforcement agencies should be required to obtain a warrant.

Full Report At:


Palestinians take step toward elections, unity


Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012

GAZA CITY, GAZA STRIP — Palestinian political rivals Hamas and Fatah on Tuesday took a first practical step toward elections and possible unity by opening an office for voter registration in the Gaza Strip.

Presidential and parliament elections are envisioned for late spring, though a date has not been set. Elections are at the center of reconciliation efforts between the Islamic militant Hamas and Fatah, the movement of internationally backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Full Report At:


Rushdie India Speech Cancelled Amid Threats

January 24, 2012

The Indian organizers of the largest literary festival in Asia cancelled a televised speech by author Salman Rushdie just minutes before it was scheduled, due to the threat of violent protests.

Rushdie was set to address the Jaipur Literature Festival in the western Indian state of Rajasthan on Tuesday, but some Muslim groups opposed the speech.

The British-Indian author sharply criticized the Indian government following the decision to scrap his televised speech. Rushdie told an Indian news channel that he will come to India as many times as he chooses, and will not allow "these religious gangsters and their cronies in the government to prevent me."

Full Report At:


Bloomberg blasts use of movie during NYPD training



Jan. 24, 2012

NEW YORK -- Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday that New York police used "terrible judgment" in showing counterterrorism trainees a documentary-style film that says Muslim extremists are masquerading as moderates to destroy America from within.

Bloomberg said police have stopped showing officers "The Third Jihad," a 72-minute movie that has been branded inflammatory by some Muslim organizations and was produced by a conservative group called the Clarion Fund.

"Somebody exercised some terrible judgment," he said in Albany. "As soon as they found out about it, they stopped it."

The criticism was unusual for Bloomberg, who in recent months has vigorously defended the police department's counterterrorism efforts after an Associated Press investigation exposed a secret program to gather intelligence on Muslim neighborhoods.

Bloomberg said neither he nor Police Commissioner Ray Kelly knew about the film being shown.

"The Third Jihad" contains TV images of Hezbollah rocket attacks, children being held hostage by Muslim militants and a woman it says was arrested in Iran for wearing immodest clothing. It shows pictures it says were taken from Islamic videos and websites, including a doctored image of an Islamic flag flying over the White House.

It accuses Muslim extremists of posing as moderates and charges several Muslim organizations with being soft on terrorism. Speakers interviewed in the film say "Islamism is like cancer" and urge a "battle for our civilization."

Full Report At:


Intelligence Minister: Iran to Maintain Inspiring Role in Muslim World

25 January 2012

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi said that the pressures exerted by the West on the Iranian nation to make Tehran stop its support for Islamic Awakening are ineffective and Iran will maintain its inspiring role among the Muslim countries.

"Enemy is trying to limit Tehran's regional influence by embroiling it into internal problems but Islamic Republic will continue its inspiring role toward the Muslim world and his support for popular Islamic Awakening in the region," Moslehi underscored.

Full Report At:


New European Union sanctions target Iran nuclear program

January 23, 2012

The European Union is dialing up the pressure on Iran, saying Monday it will cut off oil imports and freeze assets in an effort to starve the country's nuclear program of funding.

"Today's action demonstrates the EU's growing concern about Iran's nuclear programme, and our determination to increase peaceful, legitimate pressure on Iran to return to negotiations," British Foreign Secretary William Hague said in a statement from Brussels, Belgium.

Full Report At:


Newly-Released Documents Show NYPD Used Anti-Muslim Film for Training


25 January 2012

If you believe the documentary film “The Third Jihad,” Islamic clerics have organized a plot to take down the United States and the western way of life. Anti-Muslim films like this are not new in a post-9/11 world--but most are not played for more than a thousand New York City police officers during training.

In January 2011, the Village Voice broke the story that the film was being shown during counter-terrorism training, after police officers offended by its content approached the press. But NYPD officials initially denied that the movie was shown to more than a few officers. Now, according to the New York Times, newly-released police records show that “The Third Jihad” was played on a continuous loop for three months during one year of training, during which time at least 1,489 police officers saw the film.

The revelation is particularly troubling given a series of allegations that the NYPD is using unwarranted force and surveillance of Muslim communities. In August, Muslim civil rights leaders criticized police for using excessive force during an altercation over headscarves at an amusement park in Rye, N.Y.  In the same month, an investigation by the Associated Press revealed that the NYPD was unfairly targeting ethnic communities with help from the CIA, even in areas outside its jurisdiction.  Daily life was under surveillance and police stationed informants, called “mosque crawlers” in Mosques to report suspicious activity without evidence of a crime.

Full Report At:


U.S. Universities Closely Tied to Qatar Pro-Islamist Faculty

25 January 2012

In the latest development concerning the relationship between U.S. universities and the Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies (QFIS), the QFIS website reveals that six U.S. universities have established a permanent relationship with QFIS. According to a QFIS web page:

Established in 2007, Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies (QFIS) is an international center for Islamic thinking and dialogue. Its aim is to enhance research into Islamic culture and promote the diversity and tolerance of the Islamic Fiqh, or understanding. Learning takes place in an open, intellectual environment and produces a structure of study that will enable future generations of scholars to become experts in Islamic culture and ideology. These graduates will be well-equipped to tackle the challenges facing Muslim communities across the world. QFIS offers programs in: Master of Science in Islamic Finance, Master of Arts in Public Policy in Islam, Master of Arts in Islamic Studies with a specialization in Contemporary Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) and Religion and Contemporary Thought, Master of Science in Urban Design and Architecture in Muslim Societies, Master of Arts in Contemporary Muslim Societies .Postgraduate Diplomas in: Islamic Finance. General Islamic Studies. Public Policy in Islam. Research is a critical component, with six specialized centers providing opportunities for postgraduate students, residents, and visiting scholars to investigate research topics in their field of interest.

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U.S. Monopoly: Hindu elites subvert Islamic nations and sovereignty


25 JANUARY 2012

America’s elites seek to control the entire world. To help enable this agenda, America lets small client powers take control over a group of nations in a region. India tries to control South Asia with collusion from big powers like USA, Russia, Germany, Japan, and the UK. These days America seeks strategic military ties to court even China which is considered to be the chief “foe” and most important competitor in Asia.

America seek full control over the Islamic world. America seeks to do this by claiming to be the "victim" of "terrorism". India joins USA in sharing this faked terror pretext to grab power toward a fascistic/Nazi Fourth Reich agenda . This new Indo-U.S. relationship since Sept-11 hoax has emboldened India to target Muslims in India and occupied Jammu Kashmir.

It is apparent that the subsequent “War on Terror” after the 9/11 hoax, has been designed to destroy democracy and humans rights, and not to affirm human rights and democracy. India is a great example of the real agenda behind 9/11 and the “War on Terror”. It is apparent that “Muslims terrorists” were not the ultimate 9/11 and the “War on Terror”; but instead cypto-Nazi planners of a New World Order “Fourth Reich”.

Hiding behind the USA and using terror ploy as the most effective tool to come closer to world's only super power, India has obtained endorsement of US-UK terror twins and notorious UNSC for its crimes in JK and India and region.

It not just Muslims that India and the innocent looking Hindu archons want to control but whole Muslim nations , with their foreign policy and media policy.

Hindus in India as the sole majority can apparently do anything to Muslims and their beings, belongings and Islamic Mosques.

Over 100,000 Muslims have been murdered by “innocent” India since its independence in 1947. One or a couple more of Muslims does not make a big difference to the number game the judiciary seems to e playing. But India will have answer for all its nefarious, treacherously anti-Muslim polices.

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Foreign Office Minister condemns Iran human rights abuses

20 January 2012

Minister Alistair Burt called on Iran to urgently review all new cases involving death sentences, and arrests contrary to human rights obligations.

"I am deeply concerned by a new wave of executions and arrests in Iran.

"There are reports that Iran has already executed around 50 people this year, some of them in grotesque public displays. This continues a shocking trend of excessive use of the death penalty that has been condemned by the United Nations.

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Iran must halt execution of web programmer

19 January 2012

Saeed Malekpour is now at imminent risk of execution

Iran must not execute a web programmer sentenced to death after one of his web programs was used to post pornographic images without his knowledge, Amnesty International said today, as the Iranian authorities continue their crackdown on bloggers and other users of the internet.

Iran's Supreme Court confirmed the death sentence for Saeed Malekpour, 35, on Tuesday on charges of "insulting and desecrating Islam". He could now be executed at any time.

The Supreme Court's decision comes as the Iranian government is stepping up its targeting of internet users in a crackdown on freedom of expression ahead of the Iranian parliamentary elections in March.

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IFJ Condemns Latest Arrests of Journalists in Iran

20 January 2012

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today condemned the recent arrests of journalists in Iran, warning that press freedom in the country is at its lowest ebb after years of unrelenting campaign of intimidation and harassment of independent media.

"These latest arrests prove there is no end in sight for the ordeal which journalists are enduring in Iran," said Jim Boumelha, IFJ President. "The situation has become intolerable and the international community should speak out against such a ruthless onslaught on independent media."

According to the Association of Iranian Journalists (AoIJ), an IFJ affiliate, eight journalists, including three women, were arrested this week on allegations of "acting against national security". They are Sahammoddin Borghani, Ms Parasto okohaki, Ms Marziyeh Rasoli, Ms Fatemeh Kheradmand, Ehsan Hoshmand, Saeed Madani, Farshad Ghorbanpou and Mehdiyeh Khazali.

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Egypt to mark first anniversary of anti-Mubarak revolt

Jan 25, 2012

CAIRO: Egyptians on Wednesday mark the first anniversary of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak, with the ruling military planning grandiose celebrations while activists vow to re-ignite their unfinished revolution.

Exactly one year ago, inspired by an uprising in Tunisia, ordinary Egyptians took to the streets to call for democratic change and to demand the fall of the regime.

n Tuesday, Egypt's military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi announced the partial lifting of the country's hated decades-old emergency law, in an apparent bid to placate protesters who have planned mass protests in Cairo on Wednesday.

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