Islamic Preacher Zakir Naik Continues to Receive 'Dirty Money' From Gulf
Message of Goodwill:No Plan for Eid Shopping, Muslims to opt for Charity
Iran Terms Trump’s Letter to WHO “Vain Attempt at Wrong Time”
Pentagon’s Latest Report Regarding Pakistan’s Support to Taliban, Haqqani
Mexican Couple Converted to Islam After Watching Ertugrul
Lebanon's Hezbollah Says Perfectly Ready for Any Confrontation with Israel
Taliban Chief Promises Equal Rights for Men and Women in His Eid Message
Afghan Taliban Supreme Leader Offers General Amnesty to Opponents
More than 100 Taliban militants killed, wounded after attacking Kunduz city
Clinic Bombed as Afghan Forces Fend Off Taliban Attack on Kunduz
Afghan Taliban leader says committed to deal with US
Taliban leader urges US 'not to waste' opportunity offered by deal
Eight worshippers killed, 12 injured in attack on Afghan mosque in Ramadan
Unleashing Full Power Of Zakat During COVID-19 Pandemic
Covid-19: Interfaith Group Says Working with Authorities on Guidelines for
Non-Muslim Places Of Worship
Indonesia: Shia Uprooted by Violence on Madura Island Long to Go Home
Indonesia in Critical Period, Says Covid-19 Task Force Head
Thailand detains 15 Malaysia-bound Rohingya for illegal entry
A Lawyer in Madhya Pradesh Beaten Up byThe Police as They Mistook Him for A
SC Agrees to Hear Plea of Muslim And Student Organisations Against CAA
Muslim Migrants from Bihar Find Shelter in Assam Hindu Household
Muslims Help Perform Last Rites of Hindu Man in Tumakaru
Isolate countries that support terrorism: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu
2 BSF men killed in J&K terror attack, 4 held for LeT link
Pakistan violates ceasefire along LoC in Poonch
Hope of opening of Afghan-India trade via ICP after Pakistan opened its borders
with Afghan for trade
Hizbul man wanted for multiple murders held
Iran’s Top Commander: End of Israel Even Felt in Tel Aviv Streets
United On Quds, Religious Scholars Decry Israel’s Occupation Of Palestine
Iranian Researchers Produce Biocompatible Anti-Bacterial Dental Resins
Judiciary Chief: Iran Seriously Pursuing General Soleimani Assassination Case
Iranian President Underlines Liberation of Palestinian Lands
Iran Calls on EU to Adopt Concrete Measures against Israel’s Brutalities
International community reprimands Israel’s annexation plans
Vatican worried about Israel’s annexation plan in occupied West Bank
Iran Foreign Ministry: Israeli regime born through terror, keeps sowing chaos
US Issues New Iran Sanctions, Targets Interior Minister: US Treasury
US intelligence acknowledges Iran not after destabilizing Afghanistan despite
US hopes Israel, Palestine keep security deals
UN envoy urges Israel to abandon annexation threats
UK extends NHS COVID-19 scheme after emotional plea from Syrian refugee
Germany vows ‘zero tolerance’ for far right
Turkey condemns baseless claims by Greece
Britain First leader Paul Golding convicted of terror offence
German navy will add to Mediterranean mission by August, says minister for
Coronavirus: Egypt to offer COVID-19 testing in all general hospitals
Iran has spent $30 billion in Syria: Prominent MP
Coronavirus: Qatar reports 1,491 new cases, one death over past 24 hours
Coronavirus: Oman records 372 new cases, total infections surpass 6,000
Saudi Arabia’s measures to support private sector, SMEs amid coronavirus: A
Sisi Says Egypt Will Be Firm against Terrorist Groups and their Backers in
Jihadists Attack Nigeria Town Where Girls Abducted
Boko Haram: Airstrike kills terrorists in Yobe
Somalia: U.S. Kills Two Al-Shabaab Fighters in Somalia
Niger: 12 soldiers killed in Boko Haram attack on military base
Jordan imposes three-day lockdown with resurgence of coronavirus cases
Libyan army moves to liberate town of al-Asaba
Libyan army destroys missile system used by Haftar
Violence in Sudan's south leaves dozens dead
Turkey condemns Boko Haram attack in Nigeria
Pakistan, China and Others Reaffirm Support for Afghan Peace
NAB to offer hi-tea to its prisoners on Eid
PM makes out strong case for debt relief at WEF
Balochistan Assembly holds session under SOPs
Sindh govt allows normal funeral rites of Covid-19 patients with precautions
Peace in Afghanistan beneficial for whole region, says Qureshi
Pakistan wants early repatriation of Afghan refugees: President Alvi
Pakistan records 1,932 new coronavirus cases, 48 deaths
Pakistan police arrest suspect in honor killing of 2 cousins
US praises Pakistan’s cooperation for peace in Afghanistan
by New Age Islam News Bureau
Chief promises equal rights for men and women in his Eid message
supreme leader of the Taliban group Mullah Hibatullah Akhundzada has promsied
equal rights for the men and women following the end of the coalition forces’
presence in the country.
issued a statement on the occassion of Eid Al-Fitr, stating that “To those
sides and individuals that have reservations about the future political system
following the end of occupation – the Islamic Emirate once again assures
everyone that it does not have a monopolist policy, every male and female
member of society shall be given their due rights, none shall feel any sense of
deprivation or injustice and all work necessary for the welfare, durability and
development of society will be addressed in the light of divine Shariah law.”
also added “Some circles seeking nefarious goals and power through a plan given
to them by foreign intelligence networks to promote hatred and bigotry under
linguistic, tribal, sectarian and other titles and to threaten and endanger the
unity of our country must understand that the Afghan nation and the Islamic
Emirate will not permit such undertakings.”
as it rescued our homeland from such dangers in the past, it still (Allah
willing) retains such capabilities, hence, it would be better for the
perpetrators of such activities to review their approach and refrain from
troubling this nation with such evil actions and ideas,” he added.
regards to the signing of the peace deal between U.S. and Taliban, Akhundzad
said “The signing of the historic agreement with the United States of America
and the resultant termination of occupation is an extraordinary accomplishment
for the Islamic Emirate and the entire Afghan Mujahid nation that can prove
beneficial for all sides if implemented sincerely.”
Islamic Emirate is committed to the agreement signed with America and urges the
other side to honor its own commitments and not allow this critical opportunity
go to waste,” he said, adding that “The implementation of this agreement can
prove to be a powerful instrument for bringing an end to the war between
America and our country and for establishing peace and an Islamic system in our
preacher Zakir Naik continues to receive 'dirty money' from Gulf
Delhi: Sources close to developments have revealed that Islamic evangelist and
zealot Zakir Naik, one of the most wanted Indian fugitives, who is currently
based in Malaysia, continues to be engaged in the propagation of radical
Islamic activities and collection of funds from his wealthy contacts in the
Gulf region to support his activities.
the most recent instance, Naik has contacted one of his old contacts, Abdullah
Ali al Emadi, a prominent Qatari national, and requested him for a generous
charity during the ongoing Ramadan period.
is learnt to have assured an amount of $500,000 to him. It is also learnt that
Mohammad Siddique Al Emadi, a Qatari national, is a close associate of Naik and
helps him contact local wealthy businessmen and charity organisations for
collection of funds.
may be recalled that Naik is an Islamic preacher and televangelist from Mumbai.
He is the founder of the Islamic Research Foundation (IRP) and Peace TV, an
Islamic TV Channel broadcast in Urdu and English from Saudi Arabia. He is also
associated with several local radical Islamic organisations such as South
Karnataka Salafi Movement and Al-Lisaan Islamic Foundation.
continues to maintain several bank accounts in Gulf countries, including Qatar
and the UAE, for the collection of such funds to evade scrutiny of the Indian
government. He generally uses these accounts to transfer funds to his
associates and network for activities by IRF and other associated
organizations. The Indian government has since put a five-year ban on IRF.
is involved in the preaching radical Islamic ideology that has influenced a
number of youth in India and abroad in an adverse manner and some of them are
found to have been motivated to join extremist organisations such as Daesh.
Following are some of the instances, in which individuals influenced by Naik
have joined terror organisations:
Abdul Rasheed @ Abdulla and his wife Yasmin were radicalised while working in
Zakir Naik-run Peace International School (Kerala). Subsequently, Abdul Rasheed
motivated a group of 23 individuals to join him in leaving the country for
Afghanistan to join Daesh.
Mohd Ibrahim Yazdani and Mohd Uyas Yezdani, kingpin of ISIS-influenced
Junood-ul-Khilafafil-Hind (JKF) module which plotted to carry out terror
attacks in different parts of India, were influenced by Naik's speeches. The
module was neutralised by the Indian agencies in July 2016.
Naser Abubakar Yafahi @ Chaus joined the ISIS-influenced JKH module after being
radicalised by the preachings of Naik. Abubakar Yafahi was arrested in July
IRF had provided a scholarship to Abu Anas from Rajasthan, who intended to join
ISIS and was arrested while he was leaving India for joining ISIS.
Afsha Jabeen @ Nickey Joseph, while based in Dubai was involved in facilitating
recruitment for ISIS. She was influenced by Naik. She was deported back to
India in September 2015.
Two Bangladeshi terrorists, namely Nabris Islam and Rohan Imtiaz, who were
involved in the July 2016 Holey Artisan Bakery attack in Dhaka, confessed to
having been inspired by Naik.
view of his involvement in extremist activities, multiple non-bailable warrants
(NBW) have been issued against Naik by the Indian authorities on charges of
promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, under the
Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and for money laundering.
of Goodwill: No Plan for Eid Shopping, Muslims To opt for Charity
Message of goodwill
Amid indications that shops might open just two days before the Eid-ul-Fitr,
which falls on Saturday for Dawood Bohras and subsequently for rest of the
Muslim community, members from across sects have decided to shun traditional
shopping of clothes and home furnishing items. Calls have been given to spend
the money saved on these items to the needy as well as migrants passing through
Wednesday, intellectuals, businessmen, doctors, and netas from city released a
video appealing to Muslims to not venture out for Eid shopping to prevent
spread of coronavirus. Instead spend on charity as the holy month of Ramzan
comes to an end, they said.
too have asked the believers to abstain from buying new clothes, footwear or
home decors even if these are now available.
Qureshi, secretary of Jamiat Islahul Muslemeen, said that during Ramzan Muslims
sacrificed their routine religious activities to stay indoors. “Now, in the
last leg of the holy month, the Ramzan festivities conclude with Eid namaz. As
we changed our schedule, I feel except for essential items, no other purchasing
is necessary now. We can spend the saved money to feed the poor in our
neighbourhood, town and city,” he said.
Ahmed Khan, founder president of School Headmasters Charitable Association,
said that it is the responsibility of Muslims to help the poor, irrespective of
caste and religion. “The livelihood of daily wagers, rickshaw pullers and other
such people has been destroyed. So, it is our responsibility to help them
overcome this situation. Islam also propagates the thought that when such a
crisis hits a section of citizens, others must help them. This will send a good
message of brotherhood to the world,” he said.
Dawoodi Bohra community, which will observe Eid on Saturday, has been ordained
by their spiritual head, the Syedna, to not to step out of home for any
religious activity amid the pandemic. Malikul Ashter Fidvi, an office bearer of
Dawood Bohra community, said that strict day-to-day guidelines have been issued
by Syedna. “It clearly mentioned that no one should step out for unnecessary
activities. Essential supplies needed for Eid too have been home delivered to
all,” he said.
will not go for shopping. The saving from the shopping will be spent on
charity. We will wear the best clothes we already have,” said Huned Shirpurwala,
a resident of Shanti Nagar.
Tauqeer Ahmed, office-bearer of Madrassa Madinatul Uloom, said Eid is an
occasion to celebrate but right now there is no reason for it. “Several
messages are being circulated to inform community members that when there is no
Eid namaz, then what is the shopping for? We are advising them to spend on
charity for labourers, migrants, daily wagers as many Muslims groups are
already doing for last two months,” he said.
Terms Trump’s Letter to WHO “Vain Attempt at Wrong Time”
global health is at stake and we need global solidarity and science-led
leadership more than ever, Trump's letter to the WHO Director-General is
undermining the professionalism and independence of the Organization,” Mousavi
wrote on his twitter page on Wednesday.
described the letter as “a vain attempt at the wrong time”.
is escalating his threats against the WHO, telling the agency he will
permanently pull US funding if it does not "commit to major substantive
improvements in the next 30 days."
letter -- in which he included a false description of when information about
the virus was published in The Lancet, prompting the prestigious medical
journal to publicly dispute his claims on Tuesday -- is the latest action he's
taken against the WHO following his decision last month to temporarily halt US
funding to the group.
agency has at times been criticized for its response to the coronavirus
outbreak, though it remains the world's preeminent global health organization
at a time when a fast-moving pandemic has claimed more than 319,000 lives
worldwide and largely shut down the global economy amid a search for a vaccine.
Trump, who has long eschewed global alliances and institutions, has
increasingly blamed others, including China and the WHO, amid scrutiny of his
own administration's response to the pandemic.
is clear the repeated missteps by you and your organization in responding to
the pandemic have been extremely costly for the world. The only way forward for
the World Health Organization is if it can actually demonstrate independence
from China," Trump wrote in a letter to WHO Director-General Tedros
Adhanom Ghebreyesus that he posted on Twitter late Monday.
administration has already started discussions with you on how to reform the
organization. But action is needed quickly. We do not have time to waste,"
Trump concluded, adding that the US will "reconsider our membership"
unless unspecified improvements are made.
latest report regarding Pakistan’s support to Taliban, Haqqani Network
Department of Defense (Pentagon) released its latest report outlining
Pakistan’s continued support to Taliban and the notorious Haqqani terrorist
Pentagon report, prepared by the Inspector General, complied with the helip of
the Department of State and United States Agency for International Development,
covers the period from January to March of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, the
U.S. military mission in Afghanistan.
continues to harbor the Taliban and associated militant groups in Pakistan,
such as the Haqqani Network, which maintains the ability to conduct attacks
against Afghan interests,” the report said.
report also added that Islamabad has encouraged the Afghan Taliban to
participate in peace talks but that it “refrained from applying coercive
pressure that would seriously threaten its relationship with the Afghan Taliban
to dissuade the group from conducting further violence.”
comes as Pakistani leaders have repeatedly assured Washington that they support
peace and stability in Afghanistan.
Pentagon stated in its report that Islamabad’s primary strategic objective in
Afghanistan is to counter its regional archrival, India, and prevent the
spillover of instability from the neighboring country.
likely views increased Taliban influence in Afghanistan as supporting its
overall objectives and will seek to influence intra-Afghan peace talks in a
direction favorable to Pakistan,” the report noted.
couple converted to Islam after watching Ertugrul
Turkish drama series Dirilis Ertgrul is quite famous among masses and it has
impacted a lot of people in a positive way.
inspired a Mexcian couple in a whole new way and they converted to Islam after
getting inspired by watching Dirilis Ertugrul. In 2019, this couple converted
to Islam after they met Abdur Rahman Alp aka Celal Al from Dirilis Ertugrul. He
met the couple during the 22nd annual meeting of the Muslim American Society.
At the end of the event, a Mexican couple converted to Islam by reciting the
Islamic proclamation of faith with the help of the famous actor.
couple said, “we were affected by Turkish TV series Resurrection: Ertuğrul and
Turkey’s humanitarian activities around the world, and then decided to become
Hezbollah says perfectly ready for any confrontation with Israel
senior Hezbollah official says the liberation of Jerusalem al-Quds from Israeli
occupation tops the agenda of the regional resistance front, and that the
Lebanese movement is fully prepared for any type of confrontation with the
regime in Tel Aviv in line with that objective.
are perfectly ready to confront any act of aggression or instance of folly that
the Zionist regime could commit,” Seyyed Hashem Safieddine, head of Hezbollah’s
Executive Council, told Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen television channel on Tuesday.
resistance movement is currently assured and well aware of its approach and
choices in the event of such a confrontation with the enemy,” he added.
movement, however, is not seeking war and is not working to ignite one, the
in a ‘tight spot’
further highlighted a string of defeats Israel has suffered in the face of the
regional resistance front over the past years, including in the wars the regime
waged against Lebanon in 2000 and 2006.
[Israeli] army, which had been described as invincible, was subdued and
suffered defeat,” he said.
The Zionist regime is currently caught in a
“tight spot” as it has fallen short of answering questions that have to do with
military affairs, Safieddine said.
Hezbollah official said the main goal of the regional resistance front is to
secure the liberation of Jerusalem al-Quds from Israeli occupation, and that
all have a “duty” to prepare for a confrontation with the Zionist regime to
realize that objective.
also pointed to the upcoming International al-Quds Day, emphasizing the
importance of commemorating the “precious” occasion.
year, millions of Muslims and supporters of the Palestinian cause mark the
occasion across the world on the last Friday of the fasting month of Ramadan to
underscore the plight of Palestinians, heeding a call by the late founder of
the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini.
‘well aware of Hezbollah’s power’
Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary-General Sheikh Naim Qassem likewise reaffirmed the
movement’s readiness to deal with any Israeli act of aggression.
Israel is having a hard time making waves inside Lebanon because it knows that
Hezbollah is well-equipped and prepared for retaliation in case of any Israeli
by Lebanon’s al-Ahd news website, the movement’s second-in-command said the
Israelis themselves “assess everything well and know that the party that
liberated its country (Lebanon)’s soil in 2006 is well capable of confronting
Taliban Supreme Leader Offers General Amnesty To Opponents
Afghan Taliban supreme leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada has offered general
amnesty to the group’s opponents, subject to them renouncing enmity. He has
said that every male and female member of society shall be given their due
his felicitation message ahead of Eidul Fitr, issued on Wednesday, the Taliban
leader categorically stated that “Islamic Emirate” did not have a monopolist
policy and assured that every male and female member of Afghan society shall be
given their due rights, as none shall feel any sense of deprivation or
work necessary for the welfare, durability and development of society will be
addressed in the light of divine Shariah law,” the statement said. He offered
general amnesty to all those standing in the opposition ranks if they choose to
renounce their enmity.
urge everyone to take full advantage of this amnesty by ending their opposition
and not becoming an impediment for the establishment of an Islamic government
which is the aspiration of millions of martyred, wounded, disabled, orphaned,
widowed and suffering Afghans,” said Akhundzada Haibatullah, who was declared
Taliban’s supreme leader after the killing of his predecessor Mullah Akhtar
Mansour was killed in a US drone attack in Balochistan near the Iran border in
the external policy of the Taliban movement, he said that political relations
of the ‘Islamic Emirate’ with regional and world countries had broadened
tremendously compared to the past as trust and confidence was built based on
the ‘emirate’ clarifying its stance and policy to others.
the basis of our policy, we seek to have brotherly relations with Islamic
countries, neighbourly relations with our neighbors and strengthening of
constructive relations with all regional and world countries in order that
obligations be discharged vis-à-vis regional and global economic prosperity,
security and communal life,” the statement quoted Mullah Haibatullah as saying,
adding that they hoped other countries would reciprocate and take similar
the agreement with the US a historic deal, he said that resultant termination
of occupation was an extraordinary accomplishment for the ‘Islamic Emirate’ and
it could prove beneficial for all sides if implemented sincerely.
said that the Taliban were committed to the agreement signed with America and
urged other parties to honour their own commitments and not allow this critical
opportunity to go to waste.
implementation of this agreement can prove to be a powerful instrument for
bringing an end to the war between America and our country and for establishing
peace and an Islamic system in our homeland,” he said.
urged Washington not to afford anyone the opportunity to obstruct, delay and
ultimately derail this internationally recognised bilateral agreement between
Taliban and the US.
said that detainees were languishing in harsh and difficult conditions in the
prisons of the Kabul administration. He said that humanitarian organisations
and various charitable groups and individuals should feel a sense of
responsibility in this regard and must take all necessary steps for the safe
and quick release of prisoners.
than 100 Taliban militants killed, wounded after attacking Kunduz city
Afghan forces killed more than 50 Taliban militants during a clash in the
outskirts of Kunduz city, the provincial capital of Kunduz province.
Ministry of Defense (MoD) said the Taliban militants launched a coordinated
attack on Kunduz city late on Monday night.
to MoD, the Afghan forces effectively responded to the attack with the support
of the Air Forces, killing more than 50 Taliban militants and wounding more
than 60 others.
defense ministry also added that additional special forces have been deployed
to Kunduz city to better control the situation in the city.
Bombed as Afghan Forces Fend Off Taliban Attack on Kunduz
Mujib Mashal, Najim Rahim and Fahim Abed
Afghanistan — In a day of intensifying violence across Afghanistan, the
country’s security forces bombed a clinic in the northern province of Kunduz on
Tuesday in their efforts to thwart another coordinated assault by the Taliban
on the provincial capital that the militants have twice overrun and continue to
country’s conflict is back into full-fledged bloodletting after a brief period
of hope that a deal between the United States and the Taliban in February would
open the way for negotiations between the two Afghan sides.
Taliban have ignored what U.S. officials describe as an understanding that they
would reduce violence by up to 80 percent in the prelude to negotiations over a
power-sharing agreement. Fighting was reported in 20 of the country’s 34 provinces
over the past 24 hours, a senior Afghan official said.
a series of bloody attacks by the Taliban in recent weeks, President Ashraf
Ghani of Afghanistan last week ordered his forces, which had remained on
“active defense,” to go back on offense.
change of posture by the government gave the Taliban the excuse to do away with
any pretense of restraint and further ramp up attacks, particularly around
cities they had largely avoided in recent months.
with the U.S.-Taliban deal constraining how much support the United States can
offer the Afghan government in offensive operations against the militants, the
security forces are limited in how much they can do.
insurgents attacked the security belt around the city of Kunduz from several
directions, assaulting at least 17 outposts and bases of the Afghan forces,
said Lt. Col. Mashooq Kohistani, commander of an Afghan Army battalion in
Kunduz. Colonel Kohistani said that all the attacks had been fended off, but
that fighting was continuing in one suburb of the city.
Khalid, Afghanistan’s defense minister, traveled to Kunduz for the operations
and put Taliban fatalities at more than 50. He said eight members of the Afghan
security force had been killed.
Fazli, the provincial director of health in Kunduz, said that the clinic in the
district of Chardara had been bombed and that several parts of it, including
its ambulances, had been destroyed.
have some wounded among our personnel and patients, but we do not have any deaths,”
Mr. Fazli said.
Wali, a nurse at the clinic who sustained wounds in his legs and arms, said
about 50 people had been at the clinic at the time of the bombing.
Taliban brought their fighters for treatment, but there were civilians there, too,”
Mr. Wali said. “The doors, the guard rooms, were struck. Our emergency section
Wali and others who were wounded were taken to the main regional hospital in
Kunduz, a city that has been overwhelmed by the spread of the coronavirus. Dozens
of hospital staff members have been quarantined.
Aman, a spokesman for the Afghan Defense Ministry, denied that a clinic had
been struck. But internal security communications in Kunduz, viewed by The New
York Times, showed that A-29 attack aircraft of the Afghan Air Force had struck
what the messages described as “a center for treatment of wounded Taliban in
the area is heavily contested by the Taliban, the clinic is run by the Afghan
government through an arrangement practiced in many volatile parts of the
country, in which a nongovernmental organization is subcontracted to provide
Majeed Mohsen, an official at Just for Afghan Capacity and Knowledge, the NGO
that runs the clinic in Chardara, said the center was established 10 years ago.
In addition to treating war wounded, it had eight staff members providing basic
health care, including maternity services and immunizations, as well as care
for malnourished children. The clinic saw as many as 80 patients a day, Dr.
2015, the first time the Taliban overran the city of Kunduz, the United States
bombed a Doctors Without Borders hospital, killing at least 40 people.
Taliban attack on Kunduz comes in a province whose leadership is in disarray.
governor has resigned, citing illness, and his farewell on Tuesday was
disrupted by a mortar that landed at his compound just as guests were leaving.
day earlier, his deputy — now the acting governor — tested positive for
Covid-19, according to local news reports. But he still appeared in meetings on
Tuesday, including with all the senior security officials leading the response
to the Taliban attack, standing next to the minister of defense without wearing
Taliban leader says committed to deal with US
The leader of the Taliban said Wednesday that terrorists were committed to a
landmark deal with the US, despite being accused of carrying out thousands of
attacks in Afghanistan since it was signed.
Akhundzada urged Washington "not to waste" the opportunity offered by
the deal to end America's longest war in a message released ahead of next
week's Eid al-Fitr holiday, which marks the end of the Islamic holy month of
Islamic Emirate is committed to the agreement signed with America and urges the
other side to honour its own commitments and not allow this critical
opportunity to go waste," Akhundzada said in a statement, using the name
the Taliban called Afghanistan when they were in power.
urge American officials to not afford anyone the opportunity to obstruct, delay
and ultimately derail this internationally recognised bilateral agreement"
between the two sides, the reclusive leader added.
months of negotiations, the Taliban and US signed a deal in February which
stipulates Washington will withdraw all troops by next year in return for
President Donald Trump's administration has made it a priority to end the war
in Afghanistan, and in a bid to withdraw foreign forces US officials have been
pushing the Taliban and Afghan leaders to hold peace talks.
the accord, the Taliban pledged to stop attacking cities and foreign forces,
but has continued to target Afghan forces in the provinces.
say the Taliban have been emboldened by the February deal, and Afghan
government officials have reported more than 3,800 attacks, which killed 420
civilians and wounded 906, since signing the deal.
United Nations has warned that the spike in violence has also led to increased
casualties among civilians.
leader urges US 'not to waste' opportunity offered by deal
leader of the Taliban militant group says it has been committed to its deal
with the United States, despite being accused of carrying out hundreds of
attacks in Afghanistan since it was signed in February.
a rare message released on Wednesday, Haibatullah Akhundzada, who hails from
the Taliban's traditional bastion of Kandahar, urged Washington "not to
waste" the opportunity offered by the deal to end America's longest
Taliban "is committed to the agreement... and urges the other side to
honor its own commitments and not allow this critical opportunity to go
waste," Akhundzada said.
urge American officials to not afford anyone the opportunity to obstruct, delay
and ultimately derail this internationally recognized bilateral
agreement", the Taliban leader added.
the Taliban-US deal signed in the Qatari capital Doha on February 29,
Washington is compelled to pull out American forces and foreign troops from
Afghanistan by July next year, provided that the militants start talks with
Kabul and adhere to other security guarantees.
data shows Taliban bombings and other assaults have increased 70 percent since
the militant group inked the peace deal with the US.
government officials have reported more than 3,800 attacks since it was signed,
killing 420 civilians and wounding 906.
a horrendous attack last Tuesday, three gunmen attacked a maternity hospital in
Kabul, opening fire at pregnant women and newborn babies there. At least 24
people were killed and 16 others were injured before the gunmen were taken out
by Afghan security forces.
though the Taliban said it was not responsible for that attack, a claim that
the US also made, the Afghan government said the militant group was to blame.
Special Representative to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad, who brokered the deal
with the Taliban, said last week the militants had kept up their end of the
bargain, even if recent violence violated the spirit of it.
Taliban have implemented their agreement not to attack the coalition
forces," he said.
week, and in the face of the rising violence, President Ashraf Ghani ordered
the country’s military to switch to offensive mode from a defensive one that
had been adopted several months before in an attempt to save the deal between
the US and the Taliban.
United States and its allies invaded Afghanistan in October 2001 shortly after
the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington. While the invasion ended
the Taliban’s rule in the country, it has failed to eliminate the militant
forces have since remained bogged down in Afghanistan through the presidencies
of George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and now, Donald Trump.
the continued occupation, the Daesh terrorist group has emerged in the Asian
country more recently.
2,400 US soldiers have been killed, along with unknown numbers of Afghan troops
and Taliban militants. Over 100,000 Afghans have been killed or injured since
2009 when the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan began documenting
worshippers killed, 12 injured in attack on Afghan mosque in Ramadan
gunmen have launched an attack on a mosque in Afghanistan's eastern province of
Parwan, killing at least eight worshipers and wounding several others.
officials said the casualties took place on Tuesday evening when the armed
assailants stormed the mosque in Parwan's provincial capital of Charekar and
opened fire on the worshipers breaking their fast in the Muslim holy month of
attack left eight people dead and 12 others injured, with reports saying the
gunmen had fled the scene.
group or individual has so far claimed responsibility for the deadly assault,
but the Afghan ministry of interior blamed it on the Taliban militant group.
on Tuesday, the Taliban launched an attack on Afghan security forces in the
northern city of Kunduz, killing eight and injuring several others.
incident came a week after President Ashraf Ghani ordered the country’s
military to resume its operation against the militants following a string of
deadly attacks on security forces.
United Nations has warned of an alarming uptick in violence against civilians
and a “striking deterioration” in respect for international humanitarian law in
number of casualties attributed to violence by the Taliban militants last month
rose by a quarter compared to the same month a year earlier to 208, while
casualties attributed to Afghan security forces rose 38 percent to 172.
data shows Taliban bombings and other assaults have increased 70 percent since
the militant group inked a peace deal with the United States in February.
full power of zakat during COVID-19 pandemic
Rohim Ghazali and Erni Juliana Al Hasanah Nasution
has financial instruments to alleviate poverty and distribute income fairly.
Known as ZIS, they comprise mandatory tithes or zakat, infaq (voluntary charity
to a group of people) and sadaqah (alms to anyone); the instruments therefore
help government programs to reduce inequality and improve social welfare,
thereby promoting economic growth.
comprises small parts of any asset given to eight categories of receivers
including the needy, the poor and people trapped in debt, and the conditions in
line with Islamic teachings are regulated in the 2011 law on zakat management.
The conditions of one type of tithes, the zakat mal, for instance, is that the
asset, including salaries, has to have accumulated for one year.
addition to zakat mal, before celebrating Idul Fitri, every Muslim is required
to pay zakat fitrah, which is around Rp 40,000 (US$2.72) per person, today’s
value for 2.5 kilograms of rice. Its main purpose is to help the poor and needy
join the celebration while purifying those who fast from inappropriate actions
help the nation overcome this pandemic, one thing Muslims can do is optimize
the aforementioned instruments to help communities survive. To help affected
people and support the needs of health equipment, the Indonesian Ulema’s
Council (MUI) even stated in its April fatwa on ZIS funds that contributions
from zakat mal do not have to wait for one year’s accumulation of assets.
to the National Alms Agency’s (BAZNAS) Potential Mapping Indicator, the potential
for zakat in 2019 was Rp 233.8 trillion (US$ 15.7 billion). Its chairman,
Bambang Sudibyo, said that the nationwide potential this year was about Rp 340
trillion. Even though the realization this year would be far from initial
expectations, the amount of zakat income in 2020 would still be very
significant to aid millions of people severely affected by COVID-19.
Ramadan fasting month is the most popular time for zakat and charity. As usual,
many individuals, various informal groups and communities – whether
neighborhoods, mosques, schools, mass organizations, alumni groups or WhatsApp
groups – have been collecting alms and tithes, even more intensively this year
because of the economic hardships around us. In the holy month, the faithful
are reminded to watch out for neighbors, relatives and anyone else who may not
even have food for the day.
always, the issue is accountability and whether anyone can raise such public
funds. According to the Zakat Law, BAZNAS and zakat management institutions
(LAZ) are authorized to collect and distribute zakat.
BAZNAS was formed by the government to manage zakat at the national level, LAZ
are formed based on community or organization initiatives. At present, BAZNAS
exists in all 34 provinces and 514 regencies/cities. Meanwhile, there are 24
LAZ at the national level, 12 at the provincial level and 33 across
LAZ must be legal as they manage public funds. Competence is required –
adequate knowledge, skills and the right attitudes, willingness and ability to
understand and comply with Islamic legal interpretations on zakat; thus good
intentions are not enough for the manager or amil zakat. What is more important
is accountability, which is both spiritual and operational. Accountability thus
means the zakat managers’ accountability to God, and because humans are God’s
representatives on earth, they must be accountable to their fellow humans.
the management of zakat must meet the following requirements. First, it must be
registered under an Islamic community organization managing education, Islamic
preaching and/or social affairs, and as a legal, nonprofit entity.
it must acquire recommendation from BAZNAS. Third, it must have a sharia
supervisor. Fourth, it must have the technical, administrative and financial
capabilities to carry out its activities. Fifth, it must have a program to
utilize zakat for peoples’ welfare. Sixth, it must be prepared to be audited
regularly according to principles of sharia and finance as regulated under the
38 of the Zakat Law also stipulates that people are prohibited from acting as
the amil zakat to collect, distribute or use zakat without permission from
authorities. The law states a violation of this rule can result in a maximum
penalty of one year in prison and a fine of Rp 50 million.
how can we align zakat management law with the informal collection and
distribution of alms and tithes in the community? This is what needs attention.
Don't let burgeoning charity, especially in these difficult times, be hampered
by regulations and red tape.
pandemic has aroused extraordinary solidarity among citizens, with all elements
of society working to help others. Don’t dampen this spirit because some of the
efforts may be considered illegal.
is where BAZNAS and LAZ needs to be more proactive, simplify the bureaucracy
and take the initiative to work directly with communities through neighborhoods
and mosques throughout Indonesia by forming zakat management units among
communities while involving the locals.
local units would be able to obtain data on the amount of tithes and alms in
the regions. Data collected from the community can be accumulated as part of
national ZIS management data.
initiative to collect zakat funds must be monitored by the authorities to avoid
fraud and to ensure the collection and distribution follows the law. In this
way, zakat would become a real power that can be used to help the government
overcome the COVID-19 disaster.
Interfaith group says working with authorities on guidelines for non-Muslim
places of worship
LUMPUR, May 14 — The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity,
Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) is currently in discussions with the
National Security Council and Health Ministry on guidelines for non-Muslim
places of worship during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
deputy president Jagir Singh said the discussions began last week. The
guidelines are expected to help the management in these places of worship to
conduct prayers or ceremonies and handle its congregants, once it has been
deemed fit for them to reopen.
is no fixed date on when the discussions will conclude, but I hope it will be
within the next two weeks,” he told Malay Mail when contacted.
today, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Islamic Affairs
Datuk Seri Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri announced that select mosques and surau in
the Federal Territories will be permitted to conduct daily and Friday prayers
under strict standard operating procedures, including limiting the number of
congregants to a maximum of 30 people.
Shia Uprooted by Violence on Madura Island Long to Go Home
a government-owned apartment complex in the Indonesian city of Sidoarjo, near
Surabaya, children play in the yard as their parents sit together and talk to
pass the time.
are among more than 330 residents here who belong to Indonesia’s Shia Muslim minority
and were forced to flee their village on nearby Madura Island in 2012, after an
attack by neighbors from the Sunni majority left one person dead.
the leader of the uprooted community who was formerly imprisoned for alleged
blasphemy, says he sees a glimmer of hope that the Shia will soon be able to
live again in Sampang, their home regency.
intention has always been to return to our home village,” Tajul Muluk, who is a
cleric, told BenarNews. “We hope it won’t be delayed until next year. The local
government needs to provide certainty.”
said the community continued to communicate with religious and community
leaders in Sampang and regency chief Slamet Junaidi had recently expressed
willingness to allow the displaced Shia residents to return there.
Aug. 26, 2012, hundreds of Sunni residents, armed with machetes and sickles,
attacked the Shia community on Madura and torched their homes. The attack
killed a 45-year-old woman and seriously injured several people.
culminated years of problems that Shia residents of the island had faced from
government officials and religious authorities, according to Human Rights Watch
(HRW). A similar attack occurred in December 2013, but with no fatalities.
Sunnis consider Shiism to be a deviant sect but, in 2012, Madura security
officials attributed the violence to a conflict within a religiously prominent
family, members of which were both Sunnis and Shias.
to HRW, in 2009 Tajul had a disagreement with his younger brother that led the
sibling join an anti-Shia campaign in Madura.
July 2012, a local court sentenced Tajul to two years in prison after finding
him guilty of spreading deviant teachings “causing public anxiety” and
blaspheming Islam. The term was later raised to four years after prosecutors
appealed for a longer sentence.
his trial in Madura, some witnesses testified that the cleric had taught that
the current Quran was not an authentic text; Muslims should pray only three
times a day instead of five; and the Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca was not
is one of more than 150 people, mostly members of religious minorities, who
have been convicted under Indonesia’s Blasphemy Laws since it was enacted in
1965, Human Rights Watch said.
law is designed to protect the six religions recognized by the Indonesian state
– Islam, Protestantism, Catholicism, Buddhism, Hinduism and Confucianism. But
in practice, it has been used against members of religious minorities deemed to
have blasphemed Islam.
one of the most prominent cases prosecuted under the law, in 2017 a court
sentenced Jakarta Gov. Basuki “Ahok” Purnama, a Christian, to two years in
prison after finding him guilty of blasphemy for comments in an edited video of
a public speech by him that were deemed as blasphemous toward Islam.
the Jemundo apartment blocks in Sidoarja, where the displaced Shia live, each
family, which typically has six to eight members, occupies a 30 square-meter
(323 square-foot) flat.
maintenance work earlier this year, the complex had been in a state of
disrepair for more than five years. Residents described it as dilapidated and
its 2018 Report on International Religious Freedom, which it published last
year, the U.S. State Department noted the case of the uprooted Indonesian Shia
than 338 Shia Muslims from Madura remained displaced on the outskirts of
Surabaya … after communal violence forced them from their homes in 2012,” the
State Department noted that the Indonesian Council of Ulema (MUI), the
country’s top clerical body that is funded by the government, had called upon
mosques to increase compassion and tolerance instead of hatred and hate speech,
in the wake of attacks carried out in 2018 against religious minority groups,
including Ahmadi Muslims.
“Intolerant groups” also used MUI fatwas to justify actions against religious
minorities and other vulnerable groups, even though the fatwas lacked legal
standing, the report noted.
affiliated at the local level with the MUI used rhetoric considered intolerant
by religious minorities, including fatwas declaring Shia and Ahmadis as deviant
sects,” it said. “Shia and Ahmadi Muslims reported feeling under constant
threat from ‘intolerant groups.’”
are an estimated 2.5 million Shias in Indonesia, but most of them keep their
beliefs secret, citing fears of being persecuted or estranged from their
March 2020, representatives of the Shia community in Sidoarja went to the
office of East Java Gov. Khofifah Indar Parawansa to demand that they be
allowed to return for good to Madura and that a 2012 gubernatorial regulation
on the monitoring of “deviant sects” be revoked. Both Madura and Sidoarja are
in East Java province.
who did not see the protesters, sent a senior official to meet with the Shia
group at their apartment complex, but his office has since taken no concrete
action to meet their demands, Tajul said.
far, there has been no response from the governor,” Tajul said.
member of the provincial legislative council, Hari Putri Lestari, said the
governor needed to address the plight of the displaced Shia.
governor should be responsive to their needs,” she told BenarNews.
at the governor’s office could not be immediately reached for comment.
Junaidi, the regent of Sampang, met with the Shia community in their apartment
complex in early May and assured them that there would not be any
discrimination against the religious minority if they returned to the island.
with religious and community leaders in Sampang about accepting the Shia
residents were ongoing, he also said.
continue to maintain communication with the Shia community,” Slamet said at the
accustomed to living on handouts’
Sidoarjo, other residents have treated the Shias relatively well, despite some
suspicion from locals at the beginning of their stay here, Tajul told
far there has been no discrimination. Praying in the mosque is safe,” he said,
adding that Shia and Sunni neighbors had previously visited each other on Eid
al-Fitr, the Muslim festival marking the end of the fasting month of Ramadan.
in 2018, the government of Sidoarja stopped allowing Shia children to attend
pre-school, forcing the community to provide early childhood education
independently, he said.
Shia residents make a living as farmers and selling food, including traditional
Madurese satay, to supplement a monthly stipend of 709,000 rupiah (U.S. $48)
they receive from the government. Some others do odds jobs, including in
are not accustomed to living on handouts. The thing that we have in mind most
is returning to our home village,” Tajul said.
said the community had no problems accessing basic government services, such as
obtaining ID cards, marriage certificates as well as papers for their
properties back home.
coronavirus pandemic, meanwhile, has not affected the Shia community much,
although some of its members have complained about losing income, Tajul said.
The city government has helped out the Shia by supplying them with masks and
food during the public health crisis, he said.
in Critical Period, Says Covid-19 Task Force Head
Indonesia is entering a critical period in its fight against the coronavirus
outbreak, National Covid-19 Task Force head Doni Monardo said on Wednesday as
confirmed cases of the disease have been growing at the fastest speed during
the last nine days.
critical period came the week before and after Idul Fitri, the most important
holiday for Indonesian Muslims when social distancing policy will come under a
is a very critical moment for us, before and after Lebaran,” Doni said in a
news conference, using another term for the holiday that falls on Sunday, right
after the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
officials especially in Jakarta will be on alert during the next two weeks to
anticipate people movement into the capital after Idul Fitri.
have reported to the president about post-Lebaran potential threat in which
residents return to Jakarta from their hometowns. We are worried that people
from new epicenters of the outbreak return to Jakarta as the carrier of the
virus. If that happens, all our efforts all these times will be useless,” Doni
year, around 19 million people left Greater Jakarta to celebrate Idul Fitri in
their hometowns and a lot more people including job seekers flocked into
Jakarta and its satellite cities afterward.
exodus was banned this year to contain the spread of the disease, but Doni said
some people had managed to leave and very likely would come back after Idul
home to 32.5 percent of coronavirus cases in Indonesia, has decided to extend
the so-called large-scale social restriction until June 4. It has imposed the
restriction since April 10.
said his team is asking help from the military and the police to prevent
arrivals in Jakarta until a full reopening of the capital.
hope the task force at the provincial and district levels can work together
with the police and the military to curb transmissions,” Doni, an army general,
remarks came on the day when daily cases set a new record. Confirmed cases of
Covid-19 soared by 693 on Wednesday to a total of 19,189, including 1,242
deaths and 4,575 recovered patients.
detains 15 Malaysia-bound Rohingya for illegal entry
Police in Thailand have arrested 15 Rohingya Muslims on charges of illegal
entry and are investigating the possibility that they could be victims of human
of the detainees were arrested late on Tuesday and three more on Wednesday
morning in Thailand’s Mae Sot, close to a bridge that separates the two
countries, police said.
were from Buthidaung, home to one of the largest concentrations of Rohingya
Muslims in Myanmar’s northwestern Rakhine State.
have been preliminarily charged with illegal entry, pending further
interrogation to determine whether they are victims of human trafficking,”
Phubed Sang-aram, superintendent of the Mae Sot district police, told Reuters
said three Thais had also been arrested for providing accommodation to illegal
television showed a video of the group of mostly Rohingya women sitting on the
floor being questioned by police.
group had planned to go to Malaysia via Thailand, said Chaiyapheuk
Chiantranluk, the Mae Sot district chief.
numbers of Rohingya fled a 2017 military crackdown in the largely Buddhist
Rakhine state that the UN said was executed with genocidal intent.
Rohingya risked death and starvation on perilous boat journeys in the hope of
reaching predominantly Muslim Malaysia.
denies allegations that its security forces have committed atrocities against
them and says it was conducting a legitimate security operation against
militants who attacked police posts.
Lawyer In Madhya Pradesh Beaten Up By The Police As They Mistook Him For A
lawyer, Deepak Bundele, took an audio recording of a visit by two policemen;
Madhya Pradesh police on Wednesday suspended a sub-inspector for telling a
lawyer he was allegedly beaten up by the police as they mistook him for a
Muslim, for he sported a beard.
lawyer, Deepak Bundele, who is diabetic, was going to the district hospital in
Betul on March 23 to seek treatment, with only prohibitory orders in force
ahead of the lockdown, when the police reportedly thrashed him.
May 17, two policemen, including the official now suspended, visited him to
take a statement. “Police, whenever there are Hindu-Muslim riots, always sides
with the Hindus, even Muslims know it. But this happened, it was a mistake,”
one of the policemen is heard in an audio clip Mr. Bundele recorded. “So you
are saying they thrashed me thinking I am a Muslim,” he asked them, to which
one of them replied, “Yes, that is the case, your beard is long too.”
galat fehmi ke shikar hue (they were victims of a misunderstanding). It
happens. We are in deep sorrow,” the policemen are heard apologising to him.
Mr. Bundele is heard saying, “What is my value now, of my career? That a lawyer
got beaten up by the police?”
Hindu called the sub-inspector on the phone, who attested to the remarks and
the meeting: “He looks like a Muslim. It was a confusion... He had a long
beard. Sometimes such incidents happen. I made it clear that sometimes the
police make mistakes, and for that we apologise. But he didn’t listen and he
went ahead with the statement.”
Mr. Bundele’s recording, one of the policemen is heard pressing him not to
register his statement, “Don’t write it now, please listen to me. You are like
my child. A voice is coming out of my heart, that the police officials with me
didn’t misbehave or thrash anyone...This is the country of Gandhi, we are
children of Gandhi. The thing is they mistook you as belonging to a different community,
that’s why the incident happened. it’s nothing else.”
Mr. Bundele wrote to the Inspector General of Police, Hoshangabad and even the
Chief Minister about the remarks on May 18 itself, Betul police admitted to not
knowing about the remarks on Wednesday morning.
The Hindu inquired about the incident with Shraddha Joshi, Additional
Superintendent of Police, Betul, she sought the recording and hours later
informed that the official had been suspended. A case has not been registered
the recordings, Ms. Joshi claimed the inquiry of the Sub Divisonal Officer of
Police, Betul, had held the thrashing can't be proved in the first place due to
lack of evidence. “He hasn’t able to recognise any of the accused officials
saying they were wearing masks at the time of the incident. There are no
witnesses to the incident,” she claimed.
asked about the Sub-Inspector apologising for the thrashing in the recording,
she said the police were going to investigate the incident from scratch.
his complaint, Mr. Bundele has stated he had sought the video recording of the
area, where he was thrashed, from the police under the Right to Information
Act. Ms. Joshi, the Public Information Officer, has rejected the query as he
had not stated the purpose of seeking the footage under Section 8 of the Act,
which exempts disclosure of information under certain circumstances. The query
is now pending before the Superintendent of Police (SP), the first appellate
repeated attempts, D.S. Bhadoria, the SP, did not take phone calls or respond
to text messages for a comment.
Agrees To Hear Plea Of Muslim And Student Organisations Against CAA
DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to hear a fresh batch of petitions
challenging constitutional validity of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) but
refused to pass any interim order to stay its operation.
bench of Chief Justice S A Bobde, Justices A S Bopanna and Hrishikesh Roy
issued notice to Centre seeking its response on the petitions and tagged them
with other petitions filed earlier against CAA. The court passed the order on
petitions filed by Tamil Nadu Thoweed Jamat, All Assam Law Students Union,
Muslim Students Federation (Assam) and others. More than 150 petitions have so
far been filed in apex court on the issue.
Nadu Thoweed Jamat, who filed the petition through advocate Vikas Singh Jangra,
alleged that the amendment is against the fundamental principle of
‘secularism’, which is enshrined as basic structure of the Constitution as it
has introduced religion as a reference point for acquisition of citizenship for
illegal migrants from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
present Act has raised severe insecurity and apprehension in the mind of Muslim
minority all over the country as the Act stands to be anti- Muslim community
and anti- minority even on the face of it. The Act has made a clear exclusion
of Muslim community in regards to the government policy of giving citizenship
to the undocumented migrants and refugees. The Citizenship Act, 1955 is on a
principle that the citizenship as a unifying idea. Its shared identity is at
the core of citizenship and has been at the core since the time the
constitution was enacted in India,”it said.
Students Federation in its plea alleged that Citizenship Amendment Act was in
direct contradiction to the Assam Accord of 1985 and Section 6A of the
Citizenship Act and pleaded the court to declare the amendment as
unconstitutional and illegal.
migrants from Bihar find shelter in Assam Hindu household
It is not just bad news the COVID-19 has thrown up. Some people have set
examples of Hindu-Muslim brotherhood too.
Kumar (55) did not think twice before giving shelter to 13 stranded toymakers
from Bihar’s Khagaria and Saharsa districts under his roof. They have been
living in his house in Lower Assam’s Dhubri district since the first week of
artisans visit the house of Kumar, who is a potter, every year to sell toys in
the fairs. They stay with him and return home after about two-three months.
give them shelter every year. They make toys with bamboo, plastic and earthen
items. I manufacture the earthen items in my pottery and sell those to them.
They sell the finished products in some fairs in Dhubri district,” Kumar told
men were at their wit’s end after they were stranded in the lockdown. They had
purchased food for themselves as long as they had money. Now, Kumar and his
Hindu neighbours are feeding them.
have two extra rooms where they stay. This being the Ramzan month, somebody
brings fruits and somebody else brings something else for them. Every evening,
my family offers puja and they offer their Ramzan namaaz,” Kumar said.
potter said these artisans were victims of circumstances and they desperately
needed some help. He appealed to the government to facilitate the men’s return
lives in a joint family with his wife, three daughters, one son and three
brothers. The family, originally hailing from Bihar, has been settled in Dhubri
migrant toymakers are viewing Kumar as their “saviour”.
is our saviour. Help coming in from him and his neighbours has kept us alive.
We will never forget them,” Sajid, who hails from Khagaria, said.
artisan Mohammad Hira from Saharsa said, “I will remain thankful to him (Kumar)
for the rest of my life. I am the lone breadwinner in my five-member family and
I am stranded here. My wife and children in Bihar are facing a lot of
days ago, when a Hindu died in Assam’s Sivasagar, some Muslims had taken the
lead in cremating the body. Advocate Masud Akhtar Zaman of Dhubri said the two
incidents underscored goodness still prevails in the society.
help perform last rites of Hindu man in Tumakaru
amity to the fore as 10 Muslim youths reach out to the poor family in Tumakuru
Muslim youth helped a Hindu family to perform the last rites of a person in the
sealed down area in Tumakuru on Tuesday.
a time when people are not ready to touch anyone out of fear of contracting the
COVID-19 infection, 10 Muslim youth who have been identified as ‘CORONA
warriors’ in the Tilak Park police station limits provided the necessary help
and financial assistance to the poor Hindu family of K.H.B. Colony, where a
60-year-old man died due to age-related illness on Tuesday.
Rao, 60, a physically challenged person, was working as a tailor. He died on
Tuesday. Relatives could not come due to the lockdown. K.H.B. Colony has been
completely sealed after a man died due to COVID-19 and a couple, his
neighbours, tested positive.
Khalid rushed to his friend, H.N. Puneeth Kumar Rao’s house after he came to
know that Narayana Rao, his father, had died. He called his fellow Corona
Warriors and supported the family in their moment of grief. All the ten Muslim
youth, including Imran, Tipu, Sheru, Sharuq, Thoufiq, Mansoor and Mohammed
Khalid went to the house of the deceased and told them that they would make all
the arrangements to shift the body and conduct the last rites.
Mohammed Khalid told The Hindu, “Our friend Imran gave ₹5,000 to the family and we
carried the body from the house to the ambulance.”
said the deceased person’s younger brother and two sons (nephews), who stay in
the colony, were not ready to come to arrange the last rites out of fear of
contracting the infection.
convinced them that Narayana Rao had tested negative for COVID-19 four days ago
and persuaded them to come to the house of the deceased.
said they would have gone to the cremation ground, but did not go as they were
in the sealed down area. He thanked the district administration for extending
countries that support terrorism: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu
DELHI: Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu said on Thursday all countries must come
together to isolate nations that support and abet terrorism. In his message on
Anti-Terrorism Day, Naidu paid tributes to the men and the women who sacrificed
their lives to "safeguard the motherland from the evil of terrorism".
is the enemy of humanity and the biggest threat to global peace. All countries
must come together to isolate nations that support and abet terrorism in any
form," he said.
against terrorism is not the responsibility of security forces alone but the
the duty of every citizen to fight the evil, Naidu said.
Indians must always remain united to defeat the scourge of terrorism," the
vice president said in his message tweeted by his secretariat.
BSF men killed in J&K terror attack, 4 held for LeT link
Two BSF personnel were on Wednesday gunned down in the line of duty by a pair
of motorbike-borne terrorists in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district, the
attack coming a day after security forces killed top Hizbul Mujahideen
commander Junaid Sehrai and an aide in downtown Srinagar.
Rana Mandal and Zia-ul-Haq, both from West Bengal, were part of a road-opening
party of the 37 Battalion that came under attack while patrolling the Pandach
area, around 14km from Srinagar, a BSF spokesperson said.
terrorists snatched the duo's service weapons – an AK-47 and an Insas rifle –
before speeding away. The constables were declared dead on arrival at the
nearby SKIMS Hospital in Soura.
Budgam, around an hour's drive from Srinagar, a joint team of J&K Police
and the Army on Wednesday arrested four "terrorist associates" of the
outlawed Lashkar-e-Taiba and seized arms, ammunition and incriminating
documents from them.
arrested men were identified as Muzaffar Ahmad Dar, Mudassir Ahmad Lone and
Younis Waza of Budran village and Nazir Ahmad Sheikh of Poshkar Khag.
to police, the quartet had been providing logistic support and shelter to
Lashkar terrorists operating in the area. DGP Dilbagh Singh said there were
currently more than 14 terrorists "active in Srinagar and its
outskirts" and 240-odd across the Valley.
violates ceasefire along LoC in Poonch
Pakistan violated ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC) in J&K’s Poonch
district on Wednesday morning, resorting to unprovoked firing and mortar
shelling targeting forward Indian posts and border villages in the area. This
is the third such breach of truce in the past 24 hours.
Tuesday, Pakistan had violated the ceasefire twice along the LoC — first in Sunderbani
sector of Rajouri district around 7.30am followed by Poonch’s Balakote sector
details of Wednedsay’s violation, Jammu-based defence spokesperson Lt Col
Devender Anand said, “Around 9.30am, Pakistan initiated indiscriminate firing
of small arms and shelled mortars along the LoC in Poonch’s Kirni and Degwar
sectors. Indian troops retaliated effectively and no injury or damage has been
suffered by own side.”
of opening of Afghan-India trade via ICP after Pakistan opened its borders with
Afghan for trade
The Afghanistan-India trade via Integrated Check Post (ICP), Attari, Amritsar ,
may resume in near future after Afghanistan and Pakistan decided to open
Torkham and Chaman border for trade.
news has spread cheers among the importers of dry fruits and herbs from
Afghanistan who were finding it hard to survive with the closure of Afghan
trade via ICP after both India and Pakistan sealed the borders to contain the
spread of corona virus.
to sources, Pakistan’s’ ministry of interior, during its meeting held on May 15
had decided to open Torkham and Chaman borders round the clock and allowed
movement of unlimited number of trucks between the two countries.
informed that since Afghanistan and Pakistan had opened their borders so they
believed that the next step would be opening of Indo-Pak border via ICP for the
Afghanistan trade for which Pakistan will provide transit passage even as the
trade with Pakistan would continue to be suspended.
of federation of Karyana and dry fruit commercial association Anil Mehra said
"The news of opening of Afghanistan-Pakistan has come as a major relief to
the importers whose survival depends on the trade with Afghanistan."
claimed that Afghan dry fruits and herbs including rattan jot, jira, mulethi
trade was over rupees one crore with India. He further said that with partial
opening of markets and lifting of lockdown , the importers were hopeful of
early liquidation of their stocks and would want resumption of trade with
there is no official information about resumption of Afghan trade but sources
informed that concerned departments have buckled themselves up with the hope of
opening of ICP for Afghan trade any time now.
man wanted for multiple murders held
Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist allegedly involved in the killing of a Bharatiya
Janata Party (BJP) leader, his brother, and a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)
functionary in Jammu & Kashmir Kishtwar was arrested on Tuesday in a fresh
setback to the outfit that has lost its top commanders this month.
police superintendent (Kishtwar) Harmeet Singh Mehta said Rustam Ali was
involved in the killings of BJP leader Anil Parihar, his brother, as well as
RSS’s Chandrakant Sharma and his guard.
Parihar brothers were killed in November 2018 and Sharma and his bodyguard five
months later in April 2019. Mehta said Ali has been handed over to the National
Investigation Agency, which took him to Jammu. The cases were handed over to
the federal anti-terror agency last year.
said Ali was a close associate of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Riyaz Naikoo, 35,
who carried a bounty of Rs 12 lakh on his head and was killed in Pulwama
district on May 6. Another top commander of the group, Junaid Ashraf Khan, was
among two terrorists killed in an overnight gunbattle with security forces in
Srinagar’s Nawakadal area on Tuesday
Bhat, an alleged Hizbul Mujahideen recruiter, was killed in Doda district on
Monday. Bhat was allegedly assigned the task of carrying out fresh recruits
while Ali was doing the same in the adjoining Kishtwar district. He is also
believed to have had a role in Sharma and his guard’s murder.
forces have now launched a manhunt for the region’s oldest surviving terrorist,
Jehangir Saroori. “This militant is hiding in the upper reaches of Marwah and
Dachhan belt in Kishtwar district adjoining Doda district. He is the oldest
surviving terrorist in Jammu & Kashmir and carries an award of around Rs 50
lakh on his head...,” said a police officer, requesting anonymity.
Top Commander: End of Israel Even Felt in Tel Aviv Streets
strategic depth of the Palestine-centered resistance’s discourse has weakened
occupiers' resolve by its pervasive influence in the geography of Quds and the
lands around it and these days, whispers of the end of usurper Israel is even
heard in the streets and garrisons of Tel Aviv,” General Baqeri said in a
message on Wednesday on the occasion of the International Quds Day (May 22).
added that despite their media propaganda and spending trillions of dollars in
the region, the Zionist regime and its supporter, the US, are no more able to
speak of war against the Islamic Revolution, and their threats and anti-Iran
sanctions have also proven fruitless.
Baqeri also assured the Palestinian nation and their holy cause that the
Iranian nation and Armed Forces will remain in the frontline of the united
front against the Zionist regime and they will foil the Zionists and US plot
called Deal of the Century, annexation of the West Bank and other modern and
message was released a few days after Head of the Tehran bureau of the Islamic
Jihad Movement of Palestine Nasser Abu Sharif praised General Soleimani for his
strenuous efforts in line with the Palestinian cause to liberate Quds from
Soleimani’s ultimate goal was the holy Quds wherever he was. He thought of Quds
when he was in Iraq or Syria. No matter which part of the Muslim lands he was,
his ultimate objective was liberation of Quds,” Abu Sharif said, addressing a
seminar in the Republic of Azerbaijan to commemorate the International Quds Day
(May 22) via a video conference on Sunday.
said that the Palestinian people enjoy the spirit of struggling and are always
after liberation of their occupied lands and have never become tired of
pursuing this cause.
Sharif warned that if Muslims do not consider Quds as their compass, they will
lose their path and unity among them will fade away.
Soleimani played a key role in assisting the resistance forces in the region.
of the Research Center of the International Islamic Awareness Organization
Hossein Akbari underlined that Israel was forced to change its war strategy
from offensive to defensive mode after General Soleimani stood beside the
resistance front’s leaders.
martyr Soleimani was the initiator of a strategic move which forced Israel to
change strategy from offensive to defensive,” Akbari said in an interview with
Persian-language Sobh-e No on Saturday.
explained that General Soleimani awakened many people in the Muslim world when
he stood beside Secretary-General of Hezbollah resistance group in Lebanon and
defeated Israel in 2006 while many imagined that the regime cannot be defeated.
was the first and biggest failure of Israel,” Akbari said, adding that it was
followed by the regime’s second defeat during the 22-day war against Gaza.
Soleimani's command ran through the Palestinian resistance in a unique way and
defeated Israel in the territories occupied by the regime,” he underlined.
said that after all these defeats, the Syria war was ignited and the US and its
allies attempted to establish security for Israel but General Soleimani’s
advice to the Syrian army commanders defeated them again.
Soleimani had before his martyrdom in January 2020, in an interview disclosed
some untold facts about the 2006 Israel–Hezbollah 33-day War.
should say that the 33-day war had some hidden causes which were the principle
factors leading to the war. The war had some apparent and some hidden causes,
the pretext of which were the hidden goals that the [Zionist] regime sought for
a period of time. When I say there were hidden causes, we had some information
about the preparations of the Zionist regime, but we had no information on the
fact that the enemy wanted to launch an attack in ambush. Later, based on two
circumstances, we concluded that prior to this war, a swift ambush was supposed
to be conducted to overturn Hezbollah. Well, this war happened when two
important events, one concerning the entire region and another exclusively
concerning the Zionist regime were taking place,” he said in 2019 in an
interview with Khamenei.ir website.
said that Tel Aviv was using the opportunity of the presence of US military
forces in the region to uproot Hezbollah from Southern Lebanon, adding that
some Arab countries were also collaborating with the Israeli-American plot.
on Quds, religious scholars decry Israel’s occupation of Palestine
religious and political figures in the Arab world slam Israel’s occupation of
Palestinian lands and support the struggle of the people of Palestine to
liberate their lands.
senior leader of the Palestinian Hamas resistance movement warned the Tel Aviv
regime of serious negative repercussions in case Israeli officials commit an
act of folly against the sacred al-Aqsa Mosque in the occupied Old City of
Palestinian nation and the people of al-Quds (Jerusalem) are defending their
faith in the al-Aqsa Mosque and the Holy City. We warn the Zionists against
committing any stupid move concerning al-Aqsa Mosque,” Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas
Political Bureau Chief, said during a speech he delivered via video link on
Wednesday ahead of the International Quds Day, which falls on May 22 this year.
International Quds Day is a legacy of the late founder of the Islamic Republic,
Imam Khomeini, who designated the day in solidarity with Palestinians.
the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, the event has been held worldwide on the
last Friday of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.
then called for a comprehensive measure in the face of the controversial plan
laid out by US President Donald Trump on the decades-old Israeli-Palestinian
conflict, dubbed ‘deal of century.’
top Hamas leader underlined that Trump’s proposed plan is based on the
liquidation of the Palestinian cause, Jerusalem al-Quds in particular, and
seeks to abolish the Palestinian right of return.
further highlighted that Jerusalem al-Quds is now suffering one of its most
we are facing a big and dangerous challenge, especially that the new Israeli
cabinet has opted to annex parts of the West Bank, expropriate al-Quds
(Jerualem), and change the features of the sacred al-Aqsa Mosque.
will finally liberate al-Aqsa mosque from the grip of the Israeli occupation.
Al-Quds is the capital of the State of Palestine,” he said.
also thanked the Islamic Republic of Iran for its strong and unwavering support
for the resistance of Palestinian people against Israeli regime.
has not hesitated to support the resistance through all means. We salute the
Islamic Republic for its support for the Palestinian cause, and we salute
(late) Imam Khomeini, who designated the International Quds Day.
occupation epidemic more dangerous than coronavirus
the Archbishop of Sebastia from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in Jerusalem
al-Quds, Atallah Hanna, described the Israeli regime’s occupation of
Palestinian lands more dangerous than the novel coronavirus pandemic.
must be liberated, and we call for the frustration of all plots and
conspiracies against our holy city in particular, and the Palestinian cause in
general. Al-Quds is an issue that directly concerns both Christians and Muslims
worldwide,” he said.
Palestinian Christian leader stressed, “The Zionists attack al-Quds on daily
basis and every hour. The Israelis seek to undermine its history and identity.
There is no dignity for the Palestinian nation without al-Quds.”
Quds Day an eternal and historic event
Abdul-Latif al-Hamim, head of the Sunni Endowment of Iraq, also hailed the
International Quds Day as an eternal and historic event, stating that the
Israeli regime is sponsoring terrorism in the Middle East region in a bid to
divert public attention away from its crimes against Palestinians.
confront the Occupier with determination and resolve, because al-Quds will not
return to us by any means other than resistance. We reiterate it will not be a
memory of the past.
can think of buying or selling al-Quds, and no one can think the path to its
liberation is closed,” he said.
also denounced efforts by a number of Arab states to normalize ties with the
Israeli regime, noting, “I would like to emphasize that normalization with the
Zionist regime is Haram [religiously forbidden], because it presents a betrayal
of the Muslim Ummah’s principles.”
Quds Day very vital to safeguard Palestinian nation, unity
Bahrain's most prominent Shia cleric Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Qassim said the
International Quds Day is highly essential in order to safeguard the
Palestinian nation and its unity, emphasizing that the event is a day of
added that the Israeli regime is trying to impose its wills on Muslim nations
through establishment of relations with some Arab states.
Bahraini nation stands with the Palestinian resistance movements in the face of
the Occupation (Israel). The Bahraini
people have opposed the enemies of Islam throughout history,” the top Bahraini
of resistance fighters will foil US, Israeli plots
Qais al-Khazali, the leader of Iraq's Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq movement, said the
blood of anti-Israel resistance fighters will thwart plots hatched by the
United States and Israel, and undermine their interests.
aggressive Israeli regime is not only harmful to Palestine and the Palestinian
people, but also to the entire Arab and Muslim world.
Khomeini's designation of the International Quds Day is a renewal of the
Palestinian cause and a reminder to the entire world about it,” he said.
noted that the January 3 assassination of Iran's top military commander, Lt.
Gen. Qassem Soleimani, and the second-in-command of Iraq's Popular Mobilization
Units (PMU), Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, by a US drone strike near Baghdad
International Airport was an Israeli decision indeed.
the US military presence in Iraq and the region is an imperative issue.
Moreover, ending the Israeli occupation of Arab lands is inevitable,” he said.
forms of normalization with Israeli enemy forbidden
leader of Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement, Abdul-Malik Badreddin al-Houthi,
also censured all forms of normalization with the Israeli regime, describing
such attempts as prohibited by Islam.
main reason behind the assassination of Lt. Gen. Soleimani was due to his role
in confronting the Israeli enemy and the US hegemony, besides his support for
the peoples of the region,” he said.
noted that the International Quds Day paves the way for the final liberation of
Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.
Zionist regime is the main source of instability and insecurity in the world.
Palestinians are suffering from various and continuous crimes being perpetrated
by the Israeli regime,” the Ansarullah chief said.
stressed that the Yemeni nation stands with Palestinians against the Israeli
Day shows highest level of unity among Muslims
his part, Secretary General of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad resistance
movement Ziad al-Nakhala hailed the International Quds Day as an event, which
presents the highest level of unity in the Muslim world.
Khomeini’s designation of International Quds Day is aimed at popular
Palestinian uprising and its unity in face of Israel. The governments that
prevent their nations from observing the event under the pretext that it is an
Iranian occasion want to give up al-Quds in favor of Israel,” Nakhala
is the capital of the Muslim world. Victory over occupier can only be achieved
through the unity of Muslims worldwide,” he said.
are closer than ever to al-Quds liberation
the secretary general of Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement has lauded the
International Quds Day as a great legacy of Imam Khomeini, saying the
liberation of Jerusalem al-Quds has now become a reality.
of the faith, steadfastness, patience, honesty, sincerity and communication
between countries and resistance movement, we are closer than ever to the
liberation of al-Quds,” Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said.
year, we miss the martyr of al-Quds, Hajj Qassem Soleimani, who was a major
pillar of resistance in the region. We will thread his path and vow to achieve
his aspirations, irrespective of all psychological campaigns, sanctions, and
restrictions,” he noted.
Researchers Produce Biocompatible Anti-Bacterial Dental Resins
purpose of this project was to provide antibacterial dental resins based on
thymol and the cost-effective bioactive material, induction of antibacterial
properties in dental resins without loss of physical-mechanical properties and
maintaining color stability of dental resins in the presence of thymol.
to its structural nature and hydrophobic nature, thymol has good solubility in
dental resins, and adding it to dental materials does not increase the water
absorption of the samples, and as a result, the physical-chemical properties of
dental materials in the wet environment of the mouth are not affected.
a relevant development last month, Iranian scientists at Tehran University
succeeded in the production of a new type of dental implants by production of a
strong alloy using nanotechnology.
present, these types of implants are made of titanium alloy containing vanadium
metal and aluminium which are harmful,” Qader Faraji, the executor of the plan,
added that they have applied advanced technology of ‘severe plastic
deformation’ to produce the new implants.
new product has a nano structure and the toxic metals have been filtered out
but the product is as strong as the titanium alloy containing vanadium metal
and aluminium. The product is now in the state of commercialization,” Faraji
Chief: Iran Seriously Pursuing General Soleimani Assassination Case
judicial and legal process to pursue Hajj Qassem Soleimani assassination case
has started in the Judiciary and an interrogator and a judge have been assigned
to file the case and investigate different aspects of martyr Soleimani’s
assassination,” Rayeesi said.
noted that accomplishment of the case is seriously being pursued by the
Judiciary, expressing the hope that people and lovers of General Soleimani
would soon be informed of the results.
reminded that in addition to pursuing the case at international tribunals, the
judiciary will also pursued the case through national courts as the Iranian
parliament has authorized the Judiciary to file a lawsuit against the US with
internal courts whenever the American government adopts any illegal and
aggressive measure against Iranian nationals.
General Soleimani and Deputy Commander of Iraq's Popular Mobilization Forces
(PMF) Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis were assassinated in a US drone strike on Baghdad
International Airport in Iraq on January 3.
January 8, the IRGC Aerospace Force started heavy ballistic missile attacks on
US Ein Al-Assad airbase in Southwestern Iraq near the border with Syria and a
US operated airbase in Erbil in retaliation for the US assassination of General
Al-Assad is an airbase with a 4km runway at 188m altitude from sea levels,
which is the main and the largest US airbase in Iraq. Early reports said the
radar systems and missile defense shields in Ein Al-Assad failed to operate and
intercept the Iranian missiles. Unofficial reports said the US army's central
radar systems at Ein Al-Assad had been jammed by electronic warfare.
second IRGC reprisal attack targeted a US military base near Erbil airport in
Iraqi Kurdistan Region in the second leg of "Martyr Soleimani"
said the attacks had not taken any toll from its army men stationed at these
two bases. The US army had blocked entrance into Ein Al-Assad to everyone,
including the Iraqi army.
was the first direct attack on the US army ever since world war two.
IRGC officials said none of the missiles had been intercepted.
President Underlines Liberation of Palestinian Lands
will not be forgotten. Quds will not remain under occupation of oppressors. The
Palestinian lands will one day be liberated. We do not accept and tolerate this
cruelty, oppression and aggression at all. We will commemorate the highly
important Quds Day,” Rouhani said, addressing a cabinet meeting in Tehran on
day, a new plot is hatched by the US against the Muslims and the Palestinian
people but the strong determination of the Palestinian people and their
resistance will continue and this path will lead to victory,” he added.
Rouhani underscored that the Iranian nation has always stood against the
oppressors, adding that it is one of the principles of Islam.
remarks came as the Iranian parliament in its meeting on Monday unanimously
approved the generalities of a bill to confront the hostile acts of the Zionist
regime against peace and security.
parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission had on Saturday
prepared and approved the bill on “confronting the hostile acts of the Zionist
regime against peace and security”.
on the first article of the plan, all Iranian bodies are required to use the
country’s regional and international capacities to confront the Zionist
regime’s measures, specially its warmongering and terrorist moves, siege (of
Gaza), settlement construction, displacing the Palestinian people and
occupation of countries’ lands, including Golan,” Rapporteur of the
parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Seyed Hossein
Naqavi Hosseini told FNA on Saturday.
added that the plan also underlines support for Quds city as the Palestinian
capital and the Palestinian people.
Hosseini said that based on the approval, any cooperation or spying for the
Zionist regime is equal to enmity towards God and corruption on earth and
activities of the Israeli software platforms in Iran and using its hardware and
software products is forbidden.
noted that another article of the plan requires the foreign ministry to pursue
the referendum in the Palestinian territories which has been registered at the
new bill also bans transferring the goods produced by the Israeli companies via
the Iranian territories as well as participation of the Israeli nationals and
firms in the exhibitions held inside Iran.
also requires the government to pave the ground for the establishment of a
virtual embassy in Palestine.
foreign ministry is required to make necessary arrangements to form the Islamic
Republic of Iran’s virtual embassy or consulate (in Palestine) and submit the
results for approval to the cabinet,” one of the paragraphs of the bill said.
foreign ministry is required to adopt necessary measures (to this end) in
consultations with other countries,” it added.
plan was approved on the eve of the International Quds Day on May 22.
International Quds Day is an annual event opposing Israel's occupation of
Beitul-Muqaddas. Anti-Zionist rallies and demonstrations are held on the last
Friday of Ramadan in Muslim and Arab countries around the world, specially in
Iran, as well as a large number of non-Muslim states.
International Quds Day was started by the late Founder of the Islamic Republic,
Imam Khomeini, in 1979 as a way of expressing solidarity with the Palestinians
and underscoring importance of the holy Quds to Muslims.
to the outbreak of coronavirus in Iran, the International Quds Day will be commemorated
differently without holding gatherings and rallies.
Calls on EU to Adopt Concrete Measures against Israel’s Brutalities
the illegitimate establishment of the Zionist regime, Europe has left behind
#Palestinians & incurred painful costs on them. It’s high time Europe must
listen to the global conscience & take bold steps in defending the
Palestinians against the Israeli atrocities,” Iran's foreign ministry tweeted
foreign ministry's reaction came after the Iranian parliament in its meeting on
Monday unanimously approved the generalities of a bill to confront the hostile
acts of the Zionist regime against peace and security.
a relevant Twitter message earlier on Tuesday, the Iranian foreign ministry
reiterated that it is only Palestinians who can and should decide for Palestine
in a referendum as the global proposals have failed to solve the problem.
7 decades the international community failed to solve the question of Palestine
since the plans proposed never corresponded with its historical facts and
roots,” it said.
believes that only Palestinians whether Muslim, Christian or Jew with a
national referendum can and should decide for Palestine,” the foreign ministry
relevant remarks on Monday, Iran’s Judiciary Chief Ebrahim Rayeesi stressed the
US and Israel’s failure in implementation of their plots in the region, warning
them of a new large-scale Intifada.
of the holy Quds is still the Islamic Ummah’s priority. Today, after 72 years
of the miseries brought by the Zionist regime and its violation of deals and
crimes against the Palestinian, Lebanese and other regional countries’ people,
they are after implementation of the disgraceful Deal of the Century Plot,”
Rayeesi said, addressing a meeting of the Judiciary officials in Tehran on
described the plot to annex the West Bank to the lands occupied by Israel as a
prelude to implement the Deal of the Century plan.
community reprimands Israel’s annexation plans
international community on Wednesday lambasted Israel’s plans to annex parts of
the West Bank by July, while the United States said UN Security Council
statements had become “a little bit repetitive.”
and previous European Union members of the UNSC urged Israel against any
unilateral decision to annex “any occupied Palestinian territory … contrary to
a statement before a Security Council meeting on the Middle East, the EU
members – Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany and Poland – voiced their “grave
concern” of the plans announced by the new Israeli government earlier this
Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, said that with a new government, he could
apply Israeli law on Jewish settlements and the Jordan Valley in occupied West
Bank “where the Jewish nation was born and rose.” During his speech to
parliament, he said that it was time to apply Israeli law on the planned
annexed lands to “write another great chapter in the annals of Zionism.”
as was evident Wednesday during the UN meeting, most of the international
community is against the unilateral decision.
said it was looking forward to working with the new Israeli government but
warned that changes to the 1967 border would not be recognized.
Pecsteen de Buytswerve, Belgium’s Permanent Representative to the UN, “strongly
advise[d]” Israel against any advance on the annexation.
a veiled reference to Washington, he called on the international community,
“especially those with influence” to prevent the annexation, which would “risk
consequences not only for Israel, but also for the wider region.”
in direct response to the US envoy at the UN, de Buytswerve said direct
negotiations should be relaunched between Palestine and Israel, “but that’s why
we call on all partners [to prevent] unilateral decision that would undermine
or seriously hamper prospects for this.”
earlier, US ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft said that statements from Council
members would “only get us so far,” recommending Palestine and Israel sit down
with one another.
Council cannot dictate the end to this conflict. We can only encourage the
parties to sit down together to determine how they wish to make progress,”
down on questioning the effectiveness of the Council, Craft said the “real
problem-solving” would take place “at a table at which both the Israelis and
the Palestinians are seated.”
more: President Trump Mideast plan ‘historic,’ peace deals crucial, says Israel
also defended US President Donald Trump’s Vision for Peace, the so-called deal
of the century, calling it “realistic and implementable.” She voiced her belief
that all sides want to see an end to the conflict and the need for conversation
between both parties.
if that conviction is sincere, then we must concentrate our efforts on bringing
the parties to the table – and not on Council statements that I think we all
have to admit have grown a little bit repetitive.”
their part, France said annexation was not in the interest of anyone, including
the international community. Warning the Israeli government of repercussions,
France declared a move toward annexation would not go forward “without
consequences on the relations of the EU with Israel.”
Ambassador Nicolas de Riviere said this would be detrimental to Israel’s role in
the world. At the same time, he extended a hand to Palestinian President
Mahmoud Abbas, saying that France was ready to examine Abbas’s proposals to the
Council in February.
countries also leaped to the defense of the Palestinian cause. Tunisia said it
was “high time” for the international community and the Security Council to
compel Israel to abide by international law.
Africa said Israel’s violations of international law could not be ignored or
disregarded. It condemned what it called Israel’s exploitation of the COVID-19
pandemic to expand its “de facto annexation.”
elections and Israel’s rush to annexation
rush to carry out the annexation comes ahead of the US presidential elections
is a wide split among Republicans and Democrats over foreign policy and their
respective views towards Israel.
presidential nominee Joe Biden said Tuesday that he would “reverse Trump's
undercutting of peace.”
needs to stop the threats of annexation and stop settlement activity because it
will choke off any hope of peace,” he was quoted as saying during a call with
the American Jewish community.
has been encouraged to push ahead with the annexation based on a previous
understanding with Trump, Netanyahu claimed during a meeting with Secretary of
State Mike Pompeo last week.
Wednesday, Palestinian Prime Minister Shtayyeh blamed Trump for the annexation
even if Pompeo arrives in Tel Aviv to try to say whatever he said, the Israelis
will not listen to him or to anybody else, because they know they enjoy a green
light from the American president,” Shtayyeh was quoted as saying.
added that Palestine was ready to move on from allowing the US to negotiate a
State Department official told Al Arabiya that Washington “continues to pursue
the path that the President [Trump] set out in January when presenting the US
Vision for Peace, and we are consulting closely with Israel on this and other
Axios reported Wednesday that Russia had stepped in to facilitate a meeting
between Palestinian officials and Washington.
order to overcome the Palestinian boycott, the Russians are proposing a mini
summit in Geneva with the Palestinians, the US, the other members of the Quartet
and Arab states, such as Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab
Emirates,” the report said.
Western diplomat based in the Middle East told Al Arabiya English he had not
heard of the Russian proposal, but that “it doesn’t surprise me.”
worried about Israel’s annexation plan in occupied West Bank
possible annexation of large parts of the occupied West Bank is concerning and
could further compromise peace talks, the Vatican said on Wednesday following
talks with Palestinian officials.
for international law and UN resolutions was an “indispensable element for the
two peoples to live side by side,” the Vatican said following talks between
chief foreign policy official Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher and Palestinian
negotiator Saeb Erekat.
unity government supports a plan hatched by US President Donald Trump to allow
annexation of large parts of the West Bank, despite Israeli settlements being
considered illegal under international law.
plan has already been rejected by the Palestinians but Israeli Prime Minister
Netanyahu said annexation “won’t distance us from peace, it will bring us
Holy See is following the situation closely, and expresses concern about any
future actions that could further compromise dialogue,” the Vatican said in a
Foreign Ministry: Israeli regime born through terror, keeps sowing chaos in
many across the world prepare to mark the International Quds Day, Iran has been
drawing attention to the terrorist nature of Israel, saying the regime — which
has a dark history of aggression and occupation — has not stopped fueling chaos
in the Middle East.
Zionist regime was born through terror, and since then has assassinated
thousands of people from ordinary #Palestinians to prominent Arab figures and
Iranian scientists. A terrorist regime in nature, Israel still continues to sow
seeds of chaos in our region,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry said in a Wednesday post
on its English-language Twitter account.
also underlined the importance of the International Quds Day, a legacy of the
late founder of the Islamic Republic, Imam Khomeini, which is marked annually
on the last Friday of the holy fasting month of Ramadan in solidarity with the
oppressed Palestinian nation.
Foreign Ministry 🇮🇷
Zionist regime was born through terror, and since then has assassinated
thousands of people from ordinary #Palestinians to prominent Arab figures and
Iranian scientists. A terrorist regime in nature, Israel still continues to sow
seeds of chaos in our region.#Covid1948
image on Twitter
AM - May 20, 2020
Ads info and privacy
people are talking about this
Zionist regime has a history of aggression, secret WMD (weapons of mass
destruction) programs, occupations & unlawfulness. The Quds day is a yearly
reminder to the Muslim world that the Israeli regime’s occupation &
aggressive actions have been an underlying factor in conflicts in our region,”
the Foreign Ministry tweeted.
year on the International Quds Day, millions of Muslims hold rallies worldwide
to reiterate their call for the liberation of Palestine and denounce the Tel
Aviv regime’s atrocities against the Palestinian people.
year, street demonstrations are canceled in Iran due to the coronavirus
pandemic and replaced by online events. Leader of the Islamic Revolution
Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei is also expected to deliver a speech on the
Zionist regime has a history of aggression, secret WMD programs, occupations
& unlawfulness. The Quds day is a yearly reminder to the Muslim world that
the Israeli regime’s occupation & aggressive actions have been an
underlying factor in conflicts in our region. #Covid1948
AM - May 20, 2020
states must join forces against Israel’
on Wednesday, Iran’s Assembly of Experts issued a statement to commemorate the
Quds Day, describing the occasion as “a stage for displaying the Islamic
Ummah’s power to support the world’s oppressed, especially oppressed Palestine,
and for disavowing the [global] arrogant front headed by the Zionist regime.”
statement described the occasion as the “promised day of America’s demise and
the downfall of the regime occupying Quds,” which will undoubtedly materialize
through the Muslim world’s resistance.
Iranian body further called on Muslim governments to join forces against the
policy of normalization with the usurping Tel Aviv regime, rally behind the
brave Palestinian nation in their anti-occupation struggles, and help wipe out
the “cancerous tumor” of Israel from the heart of the Muslim world.
issues new Iran sanctions, targets interior minister: US Treasury
United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on Iran's interior minister,
accusing him of having a role in serious human rights abuse, including giving
orders that led to violence against peaceful protesters, the US Treasury
all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app
Treasury said in a statement that Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani
Fazli gave orders authorizing the Law Enforcement Forces (LEF) to use lethal
force in response to protests in November, leading to the killing of
protesters, including at least 23 minors.
Treasury's action on Wednesday also blacklisted seven senior officials of the
LEF and a provincial commander of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps
LEF Cooperative Foundation - which the Treasury said is controlled by the LEF
and which is active in Iran's energy, construction, services, technology and
banking industries - was also blacklisted, as were its director and members of
the board of trustees. The organization's name in Iran is Bonyad Taavon NAJA.
action freezes any US-held assets of those blacklisted and generally bars
Americans from dealing with them.
United States will continue to hold accountable Iranian officials and institutions
that oppress and abuse their own people,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
said in the statement.
between Washington and Tehran have spiked since US President Donald Trump
unilaterally withdrew in 2018 from the Iran nuclear deal struck by his
predecessor, Barack Obama, and began re-imposing sanctions that had been eased
under the accord.
intelligence acknowledges Iran not after destabilizing Afghanistan despite
US intelligence agency has acknowledged that Iran is not seeking to destabilize
Afghanistan where the US he's engaged in an alleged peace process.
US military intelligence announcement runs counter to previous remarks by
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, The National Interest reported.
strategic objectives relating to Afghanistan continue to be maintaining a
stable Afghan central government and security along Iran’s eastern border,” the
Lead Inspector General wrote. “Iran’s objectives also include protecting Shia
populations, eliminating [Daesh in Central Asia], opposing the US presence in
the region, and securing Iranian economic interests.”
in January the US hawkish secretary of state had claimed that Iran is “actively
working to undermine the peace process.”
has welcomed the withdrawal of US forces from its neighboring country,
maintaining that Washington is in no position to make decisions for the future
US reached a deal with the Taliban terrorist group on February 28, under which
the Taliban agreed to halt attacks in return for Washington’s phased withdrawal
of forces from Afghanistan and a prisoner exchange with the government in
agreement was supposed to lay the groundwork for a peace process in the
hopes Israel, Palestine keep security deals
top US diplomat said Wednesday he hopes Israel and Palestine keep security
agreements in place, a day after the latter announced it is ending all
agreements with Tel Aviv.
hope that the security arrangements will continue to be in place, that the work
that’s done on the ground there to keep people in Israel and Palestinians safe
will continue," State Secretary Mike Pompeo said at a briefing.
remarks came hours after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced he is
terminating all agreements and understandings signed with Israel and the US,
including security, in response to Israeli plans to annex parts of the West
regret that he has decided to abrogate these agreements," he said.
said Israel accepted the US vision for peace in the region but the
"Palestinians have continued to refuse to just simply sit down and enter
into negotiation based on President Trump’s Vision for Peace there."
was referring to the Trump administration's so-called "Deal of the
Century” that the top US diplomat said will "lead to better lives for the
Palestinian people." But Palestinian officials say that under the US plan,
Israel will annex 30% - 40% of the West Bank, including all of East Jerusalem.
hope that the leadership in the Palestinian Authority will see that that’s in
their people’s best interest, and that we can move out in that way according to
the vision that was laid out," he added.
to Israeli plans, the annexation will take place July 1, as agreed between
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his new-found ally Benny Gantz, the head
of Blue and White party.
officials have threatened to abolish bilateral agreements with Israel if it
goes ahead with its plans, which will further undermine the two-state solution.
envoy urges Israel to abandon annexation threats
Middle East envoy Nickolay Mladenov on Wednesday called on Israel to give up
"threats of annexation," saying any move towards that end will
represent a violation of international law.
dangerous prospect of annexation by Israel of parts of the occupied West Bank
is a growing threat," Mladenov told the UN Security Council.
remarks came after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reportedly announced he
is ending "all agreements" with Israel and the US in response to
Israeli plans to annex parts of the West Bank.
said annexation "would constitute a serious violation of international
law, deal a devastating blow to the two-state solution, close the door to a
renewal of negotiations, and threaten efforts to advance regional peace."
extends NHS COVID-19 scheme after emotional plea from Syrian refugee
The British government has reversed a decision to exclude low-paid foreign NHS
workers from a COVID-19 bereavement scheme after an emotional plea from a
Akkad, who works as a hospital cleaner in London, said he felt “stabbed in the
back” after learning his family would be excluded from a scheme that granted
indefinite leave to remain in the UK to relatives of NHS staff who died from
hours of his video being published, the home secretary, Priti Patel, reversed
the policy, saying the scheme would apply to all foreign NHS staff.
took on the cleaning job at Whipps Cross Hospital in March because he wanted to
help during the pandemic and thank the community that made him feel at home.
his video, however, he said he felt betrayed and made a tearful appeal to Prime
Minister Boris Johnson to change the policy.
been really enjoying the clapping that you and your fellow ministers in the
government do every week,” the 32-year-old said.
however, I felt betrayed, stabbed in the back. I felt shocked to find out that
you’ve decided, your government decided, to exclude myself and my colleagues
who work as cleaners and porters and social care workers, who are all on
minimum wage, you’ve decided to exclude us from the bereavement scheme.
if I die fighting coronavirus my partner isn’t allowed an indefinite leave to
remain. This is your way of saying thank you to us?”
said he hoped Johnson would listen to his plea because he now saw a “different
Boris” to the one who went into hospital intensive care last month after
the change, Patel said the scheme would be extended to NHS support staff and
social care workers.
are extending the bereavement scheme to NHS support staff & social care
workers - effective immediately and retrospectively.
is a very complex issue we have been working through at pace.
assured, all families will have the support they need during this tragic time.
PM - May 20, 2020
people are talking about this
death in this crisis is a tragedy, and sadly some NHS support staff and social
care workers have made the ultimate sacrifice in the pursuit of saving the
lives of others,” she said.
I announced the introduction of the bereavement scheme in April, I said we
would continue to work across government to look at ways to offer further
support. Today we are extending the scheme to NHS support staff and social care
decision to exclude the lower income foreign workers was condemned by labour
than 170 NHS staff have died during the pandemic, with many of the victims
coming from ethnic minorities.
has lived in London for four years. Footage of this harrowing journey to the UK
was part of a documentary series Exodus: Our Journey to Europe, which won BAFTA
and International Emmy awards.
vows ‘zero tolerance’ for far right
German government on Wednesday pledged new measures to combat far-right groups,
their xenophobic acts, and racist propaganda.
Minister Horst Seehofer told reporters, after a special Cabinet meeting, that
the government will implement a “zero tolerance policy” towards right-wing
extremism, racism, and anti-Semitism.
is the biggest security threat now in Germany,” he stressed, adding that the
ministries will develop a new catalogue of measures in the coming months and
strengthen programs for preventing and countering right-wing extremism.
Angela Merkel on Wednesday chaired the first meeting of a special Cabinet subcommittee
– including key ministers and top officials – to discuss problems and
shortcomings in the fight against right-wing extremism, coordinate measures,
and develop new proposals.
said they are planning to invite representatives from NGOs and migrant groups
to their next meeting in order to hear out their views and concerns.
has witnessed growing racism and xenophobia in recent years, fueled by the
propaganda of far-right, anti-Semitic, and anti-Muslim groups, including the
main opposition party Alternative for Germany, or the AfD.
year far-right extremists killed a pro-refugee politician in Kassel and
attacked a synagogue in Halle, raising alarms over extreme right-wing terrorism
in the country.
February, a far-right extremist attacked two cafes in Hanau, killing nine
people with migration backgrounds.
condemns baseless claims by Greece
denounced Greece’s parliament Tuesday for its “baseless and delirious
statements” under the pretext of marking the anniversary of the start of the
Turkish War of Independence on May 19, 1919.
date of 19 May 1919, when the first step of our War of Independence was taken,
is a sacred day not only for our nation, but also for all oppressed nations who
fought against imperialism. On such a day, the baseless and delirious
statements made by the Greek Parliament and institutions under the pretext of
marking the anniversary of May 19, 1919 does not accord with historical facts
or values of the 21st century,” Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
statement recalled that the Greek Army invaded Aegean Izmir province after the
end of the First World War in 1918, when Istanbul was the only occupied
painful occupation turned into a planned and disgraceful invasion that had no
justification and was the scene of atrocities.”
should not be forgotten that the terrifying dimensions reached by the
atrocities committed less than five months after the occupation were serious
enough to require the Allies to establish an investigative commission,” the
Greek leadership, which could not face its own history, should remember the
reports of the Allied countries' investigative commission and the facts
underlying the article of the Treaty of Lausanne on war crimes. Article 59 of
the Treaty of Lausanne determined that the acts committed by the Greek army
occupying Anatolia were against the law of war,” it added.
statement went on to say that “it is another proof that irresponsible
politicians and radicals are trying to reverse history today” as Greek Prime
Minister Eleftherios Venizelos nominated Mustafa Kemal Ataturk for a Nobel
Peace Prize in 1934 following the foundation of the Turkish Republic.
on our calls for resolving the problems in our bilateral relations through
dialogue, Greece's keeping the hand of friendship we extended as in the past is
also a necessity to read the changes of the world correctly.
is also a necessity to read the changes of the world correctly for Greece, who
insists on being indifferent to our calls for resolving the problems in our
bilateral relations through dialogue, to hold our hand in friendship as we have
extended it before.”
19 is a milestone in Turkish history, the day when Ataturk arrived in the Black
Sea city of Samsun from Istanbul in 1919 to launch the war that transformed the
nation into modern Turkey four years later.
First leader Paul Golding convicted of terror offence
Golding, the leader of the far-right and anti-Muslim group Britain First, has
been found guilty of a terror offence in the UK.
October, the 38-year-old refused to allow police access to his phone and
computer at Heathrow Airport after returning from a trip to Moscow.
was charged with wilfully refusing to comply with a duty under the Terrorism
Act. He denied the accusations but was found guilty at a London magistrates in
London on Wednesday.
magistrate Emma Arbuthnot said there was “no doubt” Golding had failed to
comply with request for information even though he was warned “over and over”
about the risk of arrest.
Arbuthnot ruled he had been lawfully questioned.
handed Golding a conditional discharge for nine months and ordered him to pay
£750 (Dh3,371) in costs and a £21 (Dh94) surcharge.
the trial he spoke only to confirm his name, date of birth, address and
told officers he had been in Moscow on a political trip to meet with the
Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, who he described as a “right-wing,
conservative, patriotic group” who were not “extreme”. He said he did not meet
with any representatives of the Russian government.
court heard recordings of a police interview with Mr Golding where he described
the request for his pass codes as “wildly inappropriate”, “completely
unjustified”, an “abuse of police powers” and a “political witch hunt”.
don’t think you have any grounds to suspect me of terrorism in any way shape or
form,” he added.
was stopped and examined under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act, which police
say allows them to “speak to people in order to make a determination of whether
they are or have been concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation
of acts of terrorism”.
navy will add to Mediterranean mission by August, says minister for Middle East
first German naval vessels to take part in Operation Irini, the EU naval
mission to enforce Libya’s long-flouted arms embargo, will join in August,
German Minister of State Niels Annen said.
Annen told The National that Germany’s commitment to the European mission was
proof of its continuing support for Operation Irini, which was a product of the
Berlin conference on Libya in January.
is already contributing with a maritime patrol aircraft as well as positions in
the headquarters of the operation," he said.
are planning to contribute naval assets by August 2020. This underlines our
government’s high political support for Irini and the Libyan peace process.
strengthening the arms embargo, the operation takes up a major element of the
conclusions of the Berlin conference and translates it into concrete action and
an EU added value."
Annen said he was “very happy” the EU had launched Irini in “merely two months”
after the conference.
naval mission, which became operational at the end of March and was agreed to
in February, will enforce the 2011 UN weapons embargo on Libya with aircraft,
satellite and maritime monitoring.
the mission has been marred by infighting between EU members and was slow to
begin a full launch. Many member nations are still considering what they will
and French ships have joined the mission, but the Greek frigate Hydra will
remain at a naval station on Crete before it joins patrols at the end of May.
which had pledged specially trained boarding personnel for the mission,
withdrew its participation this month in an apparent bid to influence the
Government of National Accord in Tripoli and its Turkish backers.
Annen said logistical considerations had meant not all assets pledged to Irini
had arrived and focus on the mission had been diverted by the coronavirus
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte welcomes German Foreign Minister Niels Annen at
the international conference on Libya in Palermo, Italy, in November 2018.
President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, right, makes a point to Russian leader Vladimir
Putin, centre, as German Chancellor Angela Merkel looks on during the Libya
conference in Berlin January 19, 2020. EPA / SPUTNIK
an organisation of 27 member states, the co-ordination and deployment of
military capabilities for a new operation requires thorough planning and
logistics,” he said.
days, we are facing additional challenges with mitigating the consequences of
Operation Irini started its activities shortly after its establishment.”
Annen said the Berlin conference on Libya was aimed at the international
community rather than the warring parties.'
said the pledge to respect the arms embargo and commitment to return to the
political process had been a “necessary result”.
Annen said there had also been some “encouraging progress” on negotiations
between the parties in Geneva.
more violence in Libya has also hampered talks.
fighting intensified around the capital Tripoli in February, the GNA and
eastern politicians aligned with Field Marshal Khalifa Hafter’s Libyan National
Army withdrew from the talks.
Berlin has accomplished is to provide a framework for talks about a political
solution and a ceasefire," Mr Annen said.
Berlin, we had the so called 5+5 military talks in Geneva under UN leadership,
which resulted in a draft ceasefire agreement.
and our partners continue to engage with all relevant Libyan actors with the
aim that this draft will be signed and implemented.”
UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr Anwar Gargash, has also called
for “an immediate, comprehensive ceasefire and a return to the political
UAE’s position on the Libyan crisis has been firm and clear and shared by the
majority of the international community,” Dr Gargash wrote on Twitter on
world powers met in Berlin at the start of the year, a fragile truce had been
brokered by Turkey and Russia.
tentative hopes that a full ceasefire could be achieved were ultimately dashed.
the weeks since, the violence has escalated. In the past month GNA forces,
bolstered by militias sent from Syria by Ankara, and Turkish air and logistical
support, have achieved a succession of military victories in the west of Libya.
LNA gave up control of the strategically significant Al Watiya airbase on
Monday, a position the eastern-aligned forces had held since 2014.
Annen said Germany would continue to condemn violence in Libya.
a period of relative calm we now have a period of escalation in the
fighting," he said.
are instances of indiscriminate shelling of residential neighbourhoods and
is unacceptable. We condemn these attacks in the strongest terms."
Annen said that for stability to return to Libya, it was crucial that the arms
embargo was adhered to.
need a commitment from all international partners to respect the arms embargo,
from supporters of both sides of the conflict," he said.
is simply unacceptable that we are seeing continued arms exports to Libya,
including by partners who were present at the Berlin conference."
Annen said Germany would, in the future, look to use more options to bolster
are still exploring options to do even more, for example in our role as chair
of the UN Sanctions Committee," he said.
Egypt to offer COVID-19 testing in all general hospitals
signaled an expansion of testing for the new coronavirus on Wednesday,
announcing that all the country's 320 general hospitals would offer testing to
people showing symptoms of the illness.
with minor symptoms will be sent home as they await test results, while those
showing serious symptoms will be kept in hospital, according to a government
May 14, some patients with minor symptoms are being asked to self-isolate at
home rather than in quarantine hospitals.
confirmed 745 new cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday, the highest daily
increase yet, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 14,229.
health ministry reported 21 new deaths, raising total deaths to 680. The number
of people confirmed to have recovered stands at 3,994.
World Health Organization has urged Egypt to expand the number of tests,
without saying what level of testing it considers appropriate.
have not released regular updates on the number of tests carried out, though a
presidential adviser said earlier this month that 105,000 PCR tests had been
has spent $30 billion in Syria: Prominent MP
has spent about $30 billion in Syria since the start of the civil war in the
country in 2011, said a prominent Iranian lawmaker in rare remarks about
Tehran’s spending in support of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.
have probably paid $20-30 billion to Syria, and we have to take that money
back,” Heshmatollah Falahatpisheh, a member of the Iranian parliament's
national security committee, said in an interview with the state-run news
website Etemad Online.
did not elaborate on how Tehran plans to get its money back from Syria.
nation’s money has been spent [in Syria],” he said.
the interview was conducted in March, Etemad Online only published it on
Wednesday for unknown reasons.
2018, General Yahya Rahim Safavi, a top military aide to Supreme Leader
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said in similar remarks that Iran must recoup what it
has spent in Syria, without saying how much the Islamic Republic had spent in
the war-torn country.
the past few years, Iranian demonstrators have criticized Tehran’s foreign
policies and outside funding, accusing the regime of wasting the country’s
financial resources on its network of proxies.
provides significant financial support to its proxies in the region. Lebanese
Hezbollah receives some $700 million a year from Iran, according to a US
estimate cited by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
US State Department’s Iran Action Group said in a report in 2018 that “Iran has
spent over $16 billion since 2012 propping up President Assad and supporting
its other partners and proxies in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen.”
Qatar reports 1,491 new cases, one death over past 24 hours
reported 1,491 new coronavirus cases and one fatality over the past 24 hours,
taking the total number of active cases to 30,481, according to the health
the country's cases continue to increase, its death toll has remained low with
only 16 fatalities reported to date. Qatar has also seen increasing recoveries
daily with 966 new recoveries, raising the total to 6,600 so far.
health ministry has administered 4,255 tests over the past 24 hours and 170,437
total since the virus was first detected in the country.
currently has the second highest number of cases in the GCC region despite its
smaller population of only 2.76 million.
first case in the country was confirmed on February 27, but the number of cases
began to rise more steeply from mid-March onwards, beginning with the
announcement of 238 new cases in a single day on March 11.
Oman records 372 new cases, total infections surpass 6,000
recorded 372 new coronavirus cases in 24 hours, raising the total number of confirmed
cases in the country to 6,043, the Ministry of Health announced on Wednesday.
more coronavirus news, visit our dedicated page.
new cases include 152 Omani citizens and 220 non-Omani expatriates.
the virus-related death toll in Oman is 27. Meanwhile, the number of recoveries
rose to 1,661.
on Monday banned all social gatherings relating to Eid al-Fitr and violators
will be fined or jailed.
prayers, livestock auctions, family visits, and group celebrations will be
prohibited during the holiday as part of efforts to curb the coronavirus
outbreak, the committee added.
Royal Oman Police has been authorized to monitor the public’s compliance and
issue fines or jail penalties for violations, according to the committee.
Arabia’s measures to support private sector, SMEs amid coronavirus: A list
Arabia has implemented several measures to mitigate the impact of the
coronavirus pandemic on its economy and shield its public finances.
measures include a 100 billion riyals ($26.6 billion) spending cut, tripling
VAT, suspending cost of living allowance and raising the debt ceiling to 50
percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
our dedicated coronavirus site here for all the latest updates.
is a list of some of the major fiscal and economic measures the Kingdom
for the private sector
Extending the grace period and rescheduling loans for companies struggling with
loans and payments amounting to more than 6 billion riyals.
Providing 1 billion riyals worth of direct and indirect loans to finance
Allocating 4 billion riyals to provide employment support and training programs
that will allow more than 300,000 beneficiaries to work in the private sector.
One billion riyals going to help private sector employees who have not
previously benefited from the support programs available.
Allocation of 4 billion riyals to provide social loans to low-income families
during 2020, with 100,000 Saudi citizens set to benefit.
Increasing the direct lending portfolio for micro and small enterprises to 2
billion riyals, set to help 6,000 male and female entrepreneurs.
Allocation of a portfolio worth 2 billion riyals to provide financing support
to small- and medium-size health facilities, with 1,000 existing health
facilities benefitting from the funds.
Allocation of 2 billion riyals to finance indirect lending programs through
Ministry of Finance has allocated 120 billion riyals for private sector support
in the following areas:
Submission and payment of the following for commercial businesses are postponed
for a period of 3 months:
Submission of tax declarations and payment of selective taxes owed.
Submission of VAT declarations and payment of VAT owed.
Supply of declarations, payment of income tax and payment of their obligations.
Submission of zakat returns, and payment of zakat owed.
Payment of the fees due by some government services and municipal fees.
Collection of import duties (bank guarantee required).
Payment of some commercial businesses are postponed for a period of 9 months.
Expansion of financing supporting target economic sectors, which includes
deploying working capital.
Expatriates whose residency permit ends from the end of March 2020 to the end
of June 2020 are exempted from the allowances and considerations above.
Human Resources Development Fund is providing 5.3 billion riyals worth of
support to help private sector businesses employ and train Saudis citizens.
covers the following areas:
Employment support worth 2 billion riyals: Supporting 100,000 job seekers in
the private sector, in addition to offering and activating remote working
tools, as alternative options to regular working environments.
Training support worth 800 million riyals: Allocated to 100,000 beneficiaries
to provide greater access to training and development opportunities.
1.5 billion riyals going to support job seekers.
Private Sector Employees Support Path worth 1 billion riyals: To support
private sector employees who were recruited from the beginning of July 1, 2019,
who were not previously supported by the Fund's support and empowerment
Kingdom’s central bank, Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA), implemented a
Postponement of Payments Program worth 30 billion riyals to help funding
authorities providing capital to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs)
and other institutions and companies, which allows for the delay of repayments
of loans and other financial obligations to the relevant funding authorities
for a period of 6 months.
period: All premiums due (including accrued profits) from March 14, 2020 to
September 14, 2020.
of financing available: 30 billion riyals, aimed at reducing the expected
effects of low cash flows on MSMEs, allowing their repayments to be delayed for
a period of 6 months.
Public Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) has introduced the
following support measures:
Exempting expatriates whose residency ends between the end of March 2020 to the
end of June 2020 from the necessary financial requirements needed for visa
renewal, by extending their residency period for a period of three months
Enabling employers to recover any work visa fees incurred after the issuance of
permits which were not used during the period of the entry and exit ban even if
they were stamped at the airport. Alternatively, work visas will be extended
for an additional three months without charge.
Enabling employers to extend unused exit and return visas during the period of
the entry and exit ban for a period of three months without charge.
Enabling business owners to delay the following, taking into account the
commercial activities most affected, by extending the postponement period as
value-added tax, selective goods tax and income tax.
of zakat returns, and payment of zakat owed.
procedures to stop services and seizure of funds by the General Authority of
Zakat and Income.
Grant zakat certificates without restrictions on the period of approval for the
fiscal year 2019.
Expanding the acceptance of installment requests without requiring a down
payment by the General Authority of Zakat and Income.
Postponing the collection of customs duties on imports for a period of 30 days,
provided that a bank guarantee is presented for the next three months, while
introducing the necessary standards to extend the delay period for the most
affected activities as needed.
Postponing the payment of some government service fees and municipal fees due
on private sector establishments for a period of three months, while
introducing the necessary standards to extend the delay period for the most
affected activities as needed.
Says Egypt Will Be Firm against Terrorist Groups and their Backers in Libya
President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi announced on Tuesday that Libya’s stability is
integral to Egypt’s national security.
during an African Union-led Contact Group meeting on Libya, he said Egypt will
not be lenient with terrorist groups and their backers in Libya.
contact group, held at the level of presidents, met virtually to discuss the
developments in Libya.
presidential spokesman Bassam Radi said that Sisi stressed Cairo’s firm stance
on Libyan crisis and reaching a political solution that safeguards the country’s
sovereignty, security and territorial integrity.
stated that he backs the will of the Libyan people and rejects foreign meddling
in Libya’s internal affairs.
Attack Nigeria Town Where Girls Abducted
have carried out a rare attack on the northeast Nigerian town of Dapchi, where
more than 100 schoolgirls were abducted two years ago, military sources and
residents said Tuesday.
soldier was killed and three wounded as fighters believed to be from an Islamic
State group affiliate looted shops and torched the home of a local chief in the
assault Monday, the sources told AFP.
attack comes days before the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, when
jihadists who have waged a 10-year insurgency usually ramp up their deadly
assaults in the region.
suspected to be from the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) faction stormed
the town, leading to a fight with troops in which sources said the soldier and
five jihadists were killed.
Bashir Manzo said the insurgents spent over four hours in town before soldiers
backed by a military jet confronted them.
was the scene of the abduction of more than 100 schoolgirls by ISWAP in
February 2018. The girls were later released although the only Christian among
them is still being held by the group after she reportedly refused to renounce
decade-long conflict in northeast Nigeria has claimed over 36,000 lives and
displaced some two million people. The jihadists have splintered into factions.
In 2016, ISWAP broke from the main Boko Haram group, led by Abubakar Shekau.
a separate incident on Monday, two female suicide bombers suspected to have
been sent by Shekau’s loyalists killed two people in the town of Konduga,
security sources and residents said.
bombers sneaked into the town, 38 kilometers (25 miles) from regional capital
Maiduguri, and detonated their explosives as a government-backed anti-jihadist
militia member was passing on a bicycle.
Haram: Airstrike kills terrorists in Yobe
Defence Headquarters says the Air Task Force of Operation Lafiya Dole (OPLD) on
Monday, neutralised scores of Boko Haram terrorists on the outskirts of Dapchi
Town in Yobe.
Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, who made this known
in a statement on Tuesday, said the airstrike also destroyed two terrorists’
gun trucks in the attack.
said that the air operation was conducted following an attack by the terrorists
in about five vehicles on Dapchi town.
to him, a Helicopter Gunship scrambled to engage the terrorists, scored direct
hits on their vehicles, destroying two of them and killing the occupants.
Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has commended the Air
Task Force for their professionalism.
U.S. Kills Two Al-Shabaab Fighters in Somalia
United States Africa Command (Africom) today confirmed the killing of two
terrorists inside Qunyo Barrow area in Sothern Somalia on Sunday.
a statement, Africom said the two were killed in an air strike targeting Al
Shabaab militants in an operation conducted in coordination with the Federal
Government of Somalia.
US support to our Somali partners is and will remain strong," said
Africom's director of operations Major General William Gayler.
statement claimed that there were no reported civilian casualties in the
enemy has no regard for the lives of innocent Somalis and the group presents a
threat to the Somali people, the US and interests abroad US Africa Command
affords our partners over-watch and added precision capabilities. US Africa
Command affords our partners over-watch and added precision capabilities,"
said Col Christopher Karns, Africom's director of public affairs.
which oversees American troops in Africa, acknowledged that for Somalia to
achieve stability, efforts would have to be drawn from both non-military and
military command said US forces will use a range of effective and appropriate
methods to assist in the protection of the Somali people including partnered
military counterterrorism operations with the government and Somali National
efforts will be aimed at improving security conditions in Somalia to enhance
governance and economic development while preventing Shabaab's desire to expand
its reach and further export violence.
Africa command continues to work with its Somali partners to transfer the
responsibility for long term security in Somalis to the Federal government of
Somali and its member states," added the statement.
air strike attacks targeting Shabaab militants in Somalia led to the death of
more than 30 terrorists in the month of April alone.
April 10, one fighter was killed in the vicinity of Jamaame while on April 9,
one militant was killed near Kobon.
April 6, five terrorists were killed near Jilib in yet another air strike while
on April 5, eight militants were killed in a similar manner near Muubaraak.
others were killed two days before in the vicinity of Bush Madina on April 3
and on April 2, another air strike killed three militants including high
ranking Shabaab leader Yusuf Jiis who was described by Africom as one of the
foundational members of the terror group.
12 soldiers killed in Boko Haram attack on military base
soldiers have been killed in a Boko Haram attack on a military outpost in
Niger's Diffa region, the scene of recent clashes with armed fighters.
attack by "Boko Haram terrorists" overnight on Monday on the Blabrine
military base left another 10 soldiers wounded, Niger's defence ministry said
in a statement late on Tuesday.
terrorists were neutralised" by Niger soldiers, the statement added.
Blabrine base is some 20km (12 miles) northeast of Diffa town in the remote
southeastern region near Lake Chad, where the borders of Cameroon, Chad, Niger
and Nigeria converge.
a city of 200,000 near the Nigerian border, has been repeatedly attacked.
region of the poor Sahel country borders Nigeria, the birthplace of Boko Haram.
It shelters some 300,000 refugees from Nigeria as well as internally displaced
people, according to United Nations figures.
October 2019, 12 Niger troops were killed at Blabrine, according to the defence
violent clashes have pitted the army against armed fighters in the region since
the start of May.
May 13, Niger said 75 Boko Haram combatants were killed in the southeast of the
country and across the border in Nigeria.
carried out another attack in the same area on Saturday.
Haram has been active in the impoverished northeast of Nigeria border areas
imposes three-day lockdown with resurgence of coronavirus cases
Jordan is imposing a three-day lockdown starting Thursday midnight after a
resurgence in coronavirus infections, which the government aims to address and
to control with the Eid Al-Fitr holiday just around the corner.
crisis cell in the National Center for Security and Crisis Management ….
decided to amend the measures taken during the period of Eid Al-Fitr, based on
the developments of the epidemiological situation of the Kingdom during the
past days,” state news agency Petra reported.
reported 23 new more coronavirus cases on Wednesday, bringing its caseload to
light of developments in the epidemiological situation in the Kingdom, the
increase in the number of Covid-19 infections significantly during the past
days, the need to increase the efforts of epidemiological investigation teams,
the need to limit gatherings and contact between individuals, and take the
necessary measures for achieving physical distancing,” Amjad Adaileh, the
Minister of State for Media Affairs, said.
army moves to liberate town of al-Asaba
Libyan army on Wednesday morning announced its continued progress towards
liberating a key town 100 kilometers (62 miles) southwest of the capital
Tripoli from warlord Khalifa Haftar's militia.
army continues advancing towards al-Asaba to liberate it from the Haftar
militia ... The clashes are very fierce," said Mustafa al-Majei, spokesman
for the government’s Operation Volcano of Rage.
army personnel were injured at the town’s entrance by drones of the United Arab
Emirates, one of the countries supporting the warlord’s forces, he added.
spokesman stressed that retaking al-Asaba is essential to liberating the city
of Tarhouna further south as it will help cut off supply lines to Haftar's
local tribes in al-Asaba announced their support to the Libyan government.
on a meeting held by the tribes of the town of al-Asaba, it was decided to join
the Government of National Accord," the town’s social council said on
local council of Mizdah town, located 100 kilometers (some 63 miles) southwest
of Tripoli, also threw their support to the Libyan government and army against
announce the support of the legitimate Government of National Accord headed by
Fayez al-Sarraj," the city council said in a statement.
army on Monday retook Al-Watiya Airbase occupied by Haftar's militias, a key
facility now back under government control after some six years under putschist
move came after the Libyan army destroyed three Russian-made Pantsir type air
defense systems used by Haftar’s forces that were also supplied by the UAE.
government has been under attack by Haftar's forces since April 2019, with more
than 1,000 killed in the violence.
army destroys missile system used by Haftar
Libyan army on Wednesday destroyed a Russian-made air defense system used by
forces loyal to warlord Khalifa Haftar in the city of Terhune.
Al-Madani, spokesman for the government-led Volcano of Rage Operation, told
Anadolu Agency that the Pantsir missile system, which was supplied to Haftar’s
militias by the United Arab Emirates, has been demolished.
of an unmanned aerial vehicle of the Libyan army targeting a hangar were also
shared on social media and in the local press.
Libyan army had announced that after capturing the strategic Al-Watiya airbase
in the western part of the country from Haftar’s militias, they had captured an
air defense system of the same type as the UAE had provided to the militia.
the leader of illegal armed forces in eastern Libya, has intensified attacks on
civilians since the beginning of May as the Libyan army recently gained an
advantage and inflicted severe losses on his militants.
government has been under attack by Haftar's forces since April 2019, with more
than 1,000 killed in the violence. It launched Operation Peace Storm on March
26 to counter attacks on the capital.
in Sudan's south leaves dozens dead
broke out this week in Sudan’s turbulent South Kordofan province, with two days
of clashes leaving nearly 30 people dead, including members of a paramilitary
force linked to the armed forces.
clashes in South Kordofan, home of a long-running anti-government rebellion,
marked the third outbreak of deadly violence in the country this month. The
previous bouts of bloodletting were in Kassala in eastern Sudan and in South
Darfur, the birthplace of a ruinous war between the government and insurgents
that began in the 2000s and continues to this day.
relatively limited in their scope, this month’s violence points to the
instability of the vast Afro-Arab nation and showcases its bumpy transition to
democratic rule, a goal that would be difficult, some say impossible, to attain
13 months after the overthrow by the military of dictator Omar Al Bashir
following months of street protests against his 29-year rule.
transitional government has been in office since August last year after a
landmark power-sharing agreement between the military and an alliance of
opposition groups that led the street protests against Al Bashir. Part of the
agreement was to reach a peaceful settlement to ongoing rebellions in the
western regions of Darfur and Kordofan as well as in the Blue Nile south of the
capital Khartoum. Months of peace negotiations in Juba, South Sudan’s capital,
have so far failed to produce a breakthrough, leaving the country’s shift to
democratic rule under threat.
latest violence took place in South Kordofan’s provincial capital of Kadugli
and its outlying areas. The clashes, which left more than two dozen people
dead, were over an arms sale, according to the army. Local Authorities blamed
an “outlawed group” for the violence. They ordered a complete, three-day
lockdown in the area in a bid to restore peace.
army said it intended to investigate the clashes with a view to prosecuting the
spokesman for the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, Brig Gen Gamal Ammer, said
at least nine members of the force were among those killed. At least 26 other
people, including 10 civilians, were wounded in the clashes, which erupted
said the RSF was not part of the fight but did not explain how members of the
force were among the killed and wounded. The genesis of the RSF is in the
notorious Janjaweed militias which fought on the government’s side during the
Darfur conflict in the 2000s. The militiamen are widely suspected of
involvement in war crimes against the ethnically African residents of Darfur.
condemns Boko Haram attack in Nigeria
Foreign Ministry on Wednesday condemned the terrorist attack by Boko Haram in
are saddened by the terrorist attacks that took place in Borno and Yobe States
of Nigeria, on May 19, 2020, claiming many lives and leaving several injured.
condemn these heinous terrorist attacks. We wish Allah’s mercy upon those who
lost their lives, speedy recovery to the injured and offer our sincere
condolences to the people and Government of Nigeria," said a statement on
the ministry's website.
Haram launched a bloody insurgency in 2009 in northeastern Nigeria but later
spread its atrocities to neighboring Niger, Chad and Cameroon, prompting a
than 30,000 people have been killed and nearly 3 million displaced in a decade
of Boko Haram's terrorist activities in Nigeria, according to the UN Office for
the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
China and others reaffirm support for Afghan peace
Representatives of Pakistan, China, Russia and Iran held a virtual meeting and
discussed the Afghan issue and issued a joint statement reaffirming their
commitment to Afghan peace.
spokesperson of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Zhao Lijian said at a regular
news briefing that Special Envoy on Afghan affairs of the Chinese Foreign
Ministry Liu Jian, Russian Presidential Envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov,
Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Special Envoy for Afghanistan Mohammad Ebrahim
Taherian, and Additional Secretary of the Foreign Ministry of Pakistan Safdar
Hayat held a video conference on May 18 and had an in-depth exchange of views
on the current situation in Afghanistan and the peace and reconciliation
meeting was hosted by the Russian side. The four parties issued a joint
joint statement welcomes the signing of the political agreement by the two
major Afghan political leaders and calls on all parties in Afghanistan to seize
the opportunity to launch intra-Afghan talks and realise comprehensive and
sustainable peace at an early date.
called on foreign troops to withdraw in an orderly and responsible manner to
ensure a smooth transition. It expressed hope that relevant United Nations
Security Council (UNSC) resolutions would be observed and implemented, and
urged all parties in Afghanistan to resolutely combat international terrorist
organisations. It reaffirmed support for Afghanistan in the fight against
present, the situation in Afghanistan is at a critical stage. China said that
as Afghanistan’s traditional friendly neighbour, it respects the Afghan
people’s independent decision on their own future and development path, and
would do its best to support Afghanistan’s peaceful reconstruction.
spokesperson said that China firmly supports the “Afghan-led and Afghan-owned”
peace and reconciliation process and hopes that intra-Afghan talks will start
and yield positive results at an early date.
will continue strengthening communication and coordination with relevant
parties in Afghanistan and making constructive efforts with the international
community for the political settlement of the Afghan issue,” the spokesperson
to offer hi-tea to its prisoners on Eid
The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) will give a ‘relief’ to its prisoners
by offering hi-tea on Eid day.
its past tradition alive, the NAB has arranged hi-tea for all detained suspects
and they will also be presented bouquets on Eid day,” a NAB spokesperson said
in a statement issued here on Wednesday.
bureau said it had decided to present bouquets to all its suspects detained at
Kot Lakhpat and Camp jails on judicial remand. It said the bureau was doing so
out of a goodwill gesture.
makes out strong case for debt relief at WEF
Irfan Raza | Kalbe Ali
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said a large number of developing
countries did not have fiscal space to deal with the economic fallout of the
Covid-19 outbreak and called for debt relief to deal with the situation.
the “Covid Action Platform” hosted by the World Economic Forum (WEF) through
video link, he said G-20 countries were coming up with a debt relief initiative
but more details were needed. “The reason why there should be such an
initiative is because we need that fiscal space to divert resources to
healthcare and environment. I talked to the heads of Nigeria, Ethiopia and
Egypt and they informed me that they are facing a similar situation,” he added.
Khan said that due to limited resources the developing countries faced a dual
challenge — combating the pandemic and dealing with poverty.
said Pakistan could not afford a prolonged lockdown and millions would have
starved if the lockdown was not lifted. “In Pakistan, we have 25 million
workers who are either daily wage earners or are self-employed, and these are
25 million families; I will say it has affected 120-150 million people in
total,” he added.
people are facing stark poverty, and unless these people work, they will
starve, so what we did, and I am proud of my government for this, was that we
started a cash disbursement programme,” he told the forum.
he said, this was only a short-term solution, which is why “we decided to ease
the lockdown, as there is no way the government can give out handouts to feed
people for too long”.
Khan said the experience of the developed world was completely different from
what had been faced by the developing world. “In countries like India,
Pakistan, and Bangladesh, specifically the Indian subcontinent, our experience
is somewhat different. The speed at which Covid-19 spread in Europe and the
United States, we are not experiencing the same sort of speed and we have yet
not reached our peak here,” he added.
said the coming year was not just a challenge for Pakistan but for the entire
world, as every country looked within and became insular, but ultimately “we
are all connected and the response has to be global”.
way forward that we have this year as a nation is that we realise that we have
to live with this virus at least until a vaccine comes out and balances it. We
have raised a volunteer force in this regard — of one million volunteers — who
will help the administration as it is already overburdened and so are the law
enforcement agencies,” he added.
has to live with virus
the inauguration ceremony of Tele-Health Platform (service through WhatsApp)
launched to register doctors and other health practitioners and provide free
online health service to patients, Prime Minister Khan said the nation would
have to live with coronavirus for at least a year and more and more doctors
would be needed to cope up with the situation as Pakistan becomes the 25th
country to have reported over 1,000 deaths from the viral disease.
becomes the sixth most affected country in terms of deaths in Asia after Iran,
China, Turkey, India and Indonesia. The number of Covid-19 cases in the world
has crossed the five million mark.
viral disease will continue to exit at least till the end of this year unless a
vaccine comes into the market and till that time we have to live with the
virus,” the prime minister said, adding that a large number of people had been
affected economically by coronavirus in the country.
about health facilities in the country, PM Khan said that even the developed
countries were facing a severe health facility crisis, but due to the already
dilapidated condition of the health sector in Pakistan, the government was
facing a bigger challenge.
we ignored our health sector in the past, but we have to improve it not for
Covid-19 but even after it to provide better health facilities to the people,
especially those living in remote areas,” he added.
prime minister said that earlier the government had started a tele-education
programme in which students were being taught in special class through the
state-run PTV and now it launched the tele-health programme to register doctors
and other health practitioners, especially lady doctors, to give health advices
to those living in the far-flung areas where doctors were not available.
and more doctors should get themselves registered with the tele-health
programme to provide medical facilities to the people in hilly and remote areas
through technology. With the passage of time, the number of coronavirus cases
will rise in the country and there will be a need to have more doctors to
combat the deadly virus,” he added.
to the health ministry, Pakistan is the first country to have launched free of
cost Covid-19 tele-health service. The service, launched by Digital Pakistan
and the Ministry of National Health Services, will connect volunteer doctors
with the citizens who may have symptoms and need guidance from professional
our 210 million populations, there are roughly less than 150,000 doctors. For
the common person, they sometimes have to take a whole day out to travel from
their village to a city to see a doctor. When the coronavirus crisis happened,
the prime minister advised us to use technology to address the problems. We
wanted to reduce the burden and risk on our healthcare facilities and our
doctors,” said Tania Aidrus, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister (SAPM) on
Digital Pakistan, during the launching ceremony.
this situation in mind, we built our solution with WhatsApp so Pakistanis would
not have to learn a new app or website. They can simply message the WhatsApp
number and receive a call from the doctor,” she explained.
on Health Dr Zafar Mirza said doctors and healthcare professionals on the
frontlines were doing and had already done so much. “One outcome of the
Covid-19 pandemic is the need to scale up digital health solutions. This
tele-health portal allows those doctors who are at home, or overseas Pakistani
health professionals to come to their support and lessen the burden,” he added.
2,198 new cases of Covid-19 and 40 deaths were reported during the last 24
hours, taking the national tally of cases to 47,259 and deaths to 1,009. As
many as 344 patients are in critical condition, while 10,731 patients have been
admitted to 726 hospitals across the country.
Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa called on Prime Minister
Imran Khan and discussed with the latter matters pertaining to the internal
security, current situation vis-à-vis Covid-19 pandemic, relief efforts and the
overall regional situation, said a press release issued by the Prime Minister
Assembly holds session under SOPs
The requisitioned session of the Balochistan Assembly was held on Wednesday
under Covid-19 SOPs after two of its members (Finance Minister Mir Zahoor Ahmed
Buledi and opposition member Mir Younus Aziz Zehri) tested positive for the new
these measures 30 per cent of the members were allowed to attend the session.
The 26 members who attended the session were given masks, gloves and hand
body temperatures were taken at the entrance of the assembly’s building. Inside
the hall they sat at a distance to each other in view of the social distancing
other media organisation was allowed to cover the proceedings except for the
state television, PTV.
assembly session, presided over by Deputy Speaker Sardar Babar Khan Musakhail,
discussed the agenda of the opposition that included government policy on
Covid-19 and usage of funds by unelected persons in the constituencies of
govt allows normal funeral rites of Covid-19 patients with precautions
The Sindh government has revised the standard operating procedures (SOPs) for
funerals of Covid-19 patients relaxing the tough conditions and allowing normal
the recommendations of health experts, “very much normal” rituals have been
restored through the revised SOPs issued by the provincial health department.
However, people have been advised to strictly adhere to the precautions,
explained in the SOPs, in order to protect participants in the rites from
contracting the contagion.
devise a methodology which is convenient and safe to all involved in death
rites keeping in view religious, cultural and customary dignified burial
without compromising health of near and dear ones” is the title of the document
defining the revised SOPs and issued to health facilities across the province.
document says that infection communication by a living Covid-19 person is
through contact or coughing or sneezing (droplet transmission). While it is
obviously not the case after death of such a patient, care is needed in coming
close to the body, it adds.
coming out of natural orifices e.g. mouth, nose and anus may harbour the virus.
People touching the body or coming in contact with body secretions can acquire
the virus. Safety of those handling the body is of prime importance,” explains
body disinfection in the hospital as well as at ghusl (washing) and kafan
(shrouding) [stages] virtually eliminates the risk. To date, there is no
evidence of a person having become infected from exposure to the bodies of
persons who died of Covid-19.”
to the document, beyond shrouding, there is no need for government or
administration personnel to get or remain involved in the rites. The body
should be handed over to the heirs for further rites like funeral and burial.
came up with details of different protective measures for the hospital
administration and health workers. It mentions the most important rites —
funeral prayers and burial — and allows normal religious practices with
prayers can be offered at usual place, masjid or graveyard,” it says, adding
that there is, however, a risk of person-to-person infection transmission at
gatherings. Hence, limiting number of participants and keeping distance between
every two persons should be strictly followed, it said.
family members, it says, should be properly counselled on this aspect by the
district administration and during funeral, advisory relating to gatherings as
issued by the health and home departments must be adhered to.
is no need to designate a separate burial place for Covid-19 deceased. They can
be buried in the usual graveyards. There is no need for any special dimension
of the grave. Usual graves can be used. [Crowding] at the burial site is
however to be avoided. Minimum number of people should be involved to avoid
cross infection between people,” it says.
in Afghanistan beneficial for whole region, says Qureshi
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Wednesday said that Pakistan has been
actively supporting the Afghan peace process as it believes that peace in the
war-torn country would be beneficial for the whole region.
said this while speaking to veteran journalist and Pakistan Today Editor Arif
Nizami on Channel 92’s programme ‘Ho Kya Raha Hai?’.
Nizami highlighted that during an online press briefing earlier in the day,
American diplomat Alice Wells said that Pakistan is the second biggest
beneficiary of peace in Afghanistan but it has not been doing much to end
violence in the country.
he said, the American diplomat expressed reservations over China’s loans to
Pakistan, saying that Pakistan would have a hard time paying back the loans
taken for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) in view of the
deteriorating economic condition due to the coronavirus pandemic.
further said that Wells also highlighted India’s role in the Afghan peace
process, saying that it is playing an important role in this regard.
to the American diplomat’s statements, the foreign minister said that Pakistan
has always promoted peace and United States President Donald Trump had also
acknowledged its efforts for peace in Afghanistan.
said that Pakistan is not responsible for the delay in the Afghan peace
process. “Their internal politics created hurdles but not that political rivals
have reached an agreement, we are hopeful that the peace process would be
carried forward,” he said, adding that peace in the war-torn country would be
beneficial for the entire region.
US’ concerns over the loans taken by Pakistan for CPEC, FM Qureshi said that
these loans were negligible when compared to Pakistan’s overall external debt.
He also said that Pakistan and China’s relationship allows them to resolve issues
to Wells’ statement about India’s role in Afghanistan, he said that both
countries can relations on account of them being sovereign states but they do
not have much in common nor did the former host refugees from the latter. He
also said that India has historically supported extremist elements within
do not want the situation to improve there because they want us to remain
entangled on our western border,” he said, adding that India does have a role
but it is being exaggerated.
asked about India’s continuous ceasefire violations at the Line of Control
(LoC), he said that India is trying to divert attention from its internal
situation in occupied Kashmir is deteriorating,” he said, adding that the
Indian government’s August 5 move drew widespread opposition from different
groups in Kashmir.
he said, India’s recent citizenship bill and their handling of the coronavirus
impact and its subsequent economic downfall has led to many citizens now
opposing their government.
wants early repatriation of Afghan refugees: President Alvi
President Dr Arif Alvi on Wednesday said that Pakistan wants early and
honorable repatriation of Afghan refugees.
president said this during a ration distribution ceremony among Afghan refugees
in wake of Covid-19 pandemic.
said that Pakistan has always kept its doors open for Afghan brethren who have
been facing war oppression for many decades.
also said that Pakistan wants early and durable peace in Afghanistan. “We
provided same facilities and cooperation to Afghan refugees extended to our own
citizens to protect them from coronavirus,” he added.
teaches us compassion and good feelings for fellow Muslims and in the same
spirit Pakistan and Turkey have been hosting Afghan and Syrian refugees on
their respective lands,” he further said.
Alvi also congratulated Afghan refugees on account of upcoming Eidul Fitr and
prayed for tranquility in Afghanistan and their repatriation to their homes. He
urged people to offer Eid prayers at home in order to curb the spread of the
coronavirus in the country.
is not just a matter of our own lives, but of our families, and this is a
responsibility,” he said.
was of the view that practices will have to change in accordance with
circumstances. He observed that the health crisis has “made everyone equal” as
the entire world is suffering from the disease.
records 1,932 new coronavirus cases, 48 deaths
Pakistan recorded 1,932 new cases of the novel coronavirus and 46 fatalities
during the last 24 hours, taking the total number infections in the country to
45,898 with 985 deaths, the health ministry said on Wednesday.
many as 414,254 coronavirus tests have been conducted so far, it said, adding
that 13,962 examinations were done in the last 24 hours.
recorded 17,947 coronavirus cases, followed by Punjab at 16,685,
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa 6,554, Balochistan 2,885, Islamabad 1,138, Gilgit-Baltistan
556 and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir 133.
far 13,101 patients have recovered from the virus, the ministry said.
police arrest suspect in honor killing of 2 cousins
May 20 (AP) A Pakistani man accused of killing his two teenage cousins after a
video of the sisters surfaced on social media showing them kissing a man was
arrested Wednesday, a local police official said.
killings took place last week in North Waziristan, a former tribal area that
served as a Taliban stronghold until recent years. The video, filmed about a
year ago, went viral last week and allegedly angered the sisters'' cousin, who
accused them of damaging the family''s honor.
arrest came following a five-day manhunt launched in the region to find and
arrest Mohammad Aslam, who fled after allegedly killing the sisters last week,
said Shafiullah Gandapur, a district police chief in North Waziristan.
had arrested the man seen in the video kissing the two sisters and he is
suspected of posting the video on social media. Gandapur said the video angered
the girls'' cousin Aslam, who is now accused of shooting the girls dead.
are also questioning the father and brother of the two girls to determine
whether they played any role in the murder,” he said.
honor killings are a significant issue in Pakistan, a conservative Muslim
country where nearly 1,000 women are killed by close relatives each year
because of actions perceived as violating conservative norms on love and
marriage. The incidents have continued even though the country''s parliament in
2016 made legal changes to mandate a 25-year prison sentence for anyone
convicted of an honor killing.
in Pakistan is illegal and couples engaging in such displays of affection are
usually detained, only to be released after paying a requested sum of money to
this month, Pakistan''s independent human rights commission in its annual
report gave a failing grade to the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan,
charging that too little was done to protect the country''s most vulnerable,
including women and children.
enforcement agencies in Pakistan are often corrupt or refuse to take the word
of a woman over a man in Pakistan''s deeply male-dominated society. In April, a
powerful cleric who has the ear of the prime minister blamed the global
coronavirus pandemic on women who dress immodestly.
praises Pakistan’s cooperation for peace in Afghanistan
The Trump administration’s outgoing point person for South and Central Asia
Alice Wells on Wednesday praised Pakistan for “solid cooperation” for peace in
Afghanistan and emphasised that future of bilateral ties depended on
Islamabad’s continued support.
have seen over the last year, solid cooperation between Amb Khalilzad and the
Pakistani civilian and military leadership to encourage the Taliban to take
steps to reach the negotiating table,” Ambassador Wells said during an online
media briefing in which she reviewed and reflected on US policies in the region
during the past three years.
Wells, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of South and Central
Asian Affairs at the State Department, is retiring this month. This was
possibly her last official media engagement.
advancement and improvement and the foundation for a stronger US-Pakistan
partnership is premised on our ability to work together constructively to
advance peace,” she underscored.
how the United States upped the pressure on Pakistan to deliver on its
counter-terrorism expectations, the retiring senior diplomat said President
Trump’s strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia unequivocally made it clear to
Pakistan that it needed to take “decisive action” against groups, and the
subsequent suspension of security assistance demonstrated Washington’s
then we have seen constructive steps by Pakistan to encourage the Taliban to
advance the Afghan peace process. Pakistan has also taken initial steps towards
curtailing terrorist groups that threaten the region, such as arresting and
prosecuting the LeT leader Hafiz Saeed and beginning to dismantle terrorist
financing structures,” she further said.
Wells said that the US-Pakistan ties, especially bilateral trade, expanded as
Islamabad’s commitment to peace in the region grew.
said continuing violence in Afghanistan was at an “unacceptable level”.
that progress to intra-Afghan political negotiations in the peace process had
been difficult, she said it was the responsibility of the Taliban to reduce
Wells urged the Afghan government and the Taliban to jointly fight Covid-19 and
ISIS-Khorasan that has carried out numerous “ruthless and evil attacks”
including last week’s attack on a maternity centre in Kabul in which mothers
and newborns were killed.
peace process, she reminded, was difficult, but obstacles have to be overcome.
US diplomat said India’s role in Afghanistan was crucial. The importance
Washington attached to India with regards to its Afghan policy, she said, was
evident from Amb Khalilzad continuing consultations with Indian leaders on the
it’s up to India to determine how best to support the peace process. India is a
very important actor in Afghanistan, $3 billion in assistance that has already
been pledged, touched every province, the diplomatic and political support that
India traditionally has provided to Afghans. … India’s going to be a critical
player and is a critical player,” she said.
Amb Wells repeated her criticism of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and
its flagship project China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and urged Beijing
to relieve the countries involved in these undertakings of its “predatory
said the US calls on “China to offer transparent relief from the BRI’s
predatory loans that countries are suffering from, emerge on stable footing.”
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