Islam in the News (October 2011)
|Islam in the News|
Commentary: “Islamists” grow in power and influence in the Mideast, you call this 'moderate'?
At its most innocent, it appears to mean that Islam is not just a religion but a political system – meaning that the religion’s tenets become law.
At worst, Islamism will be a movement to set sharia law in cement and to drive out non-Muslims and, in the extreme, work to unite Muslims and create a worldwide caliphate.
In Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, former autocratic leaders are now gone, and news reports talk of “Islamists” surging to power. In Libya, one report said, “National Transitional Council leader Mustafa Abdul-Jalil said sharia law would be the main source of legislation, that laws contradicting its tenets would be nullified, and that polygamy would be legalized.”
Sharia law is characterized by abject intolerance for not following the strictest interpretations of Islam, and is extremely harsh on women and dismissive if not hostile toward non-Muslims.
Abdul-Jalil later tried to walk his statement back, saying “I would like to assure the international community that we as Libyans are moderate Muslims.”
Well, silly us!
The Jerusalem Post writes of Tunisia’s supposedly “moderate” Ennahda party:
“The party supported the 1979 embassy takeover in Iran, and evidence suggests it was responsible for bombing four tourist hotels in the 1980s. In 1991 its operatives attacked the headquarters of Ben Ali’s party, killing one person and throwing acid in the faces of several others, and that same year (party founder Rachid) Ghannouchi called for attacks on U.S. interests in the Middle East in response to America’s invasion of Iraq in the Gulf War.
“Ennahda’s founding ideology was largely shaped by that of Sayyid Qutb, a leading ideologue of the grandfather of all Islamist groups, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood. Ennahda still maintains ties with the Brotherhood, but the Tunisian party prefers to compare itself with another political model: Turkey’s ruling AK party, which though religious in its founding and nature, has stopped short of calling for the imposition of Sharia”
A spokesman for the National Transitional Council pooh-poohed concern in the West over Abdul-Jalil’s authoritarian pronouncement, saying he “had an obligation at the dawn of a new era to assure Libyans that Islam would be respected.” That’s a crock. No one expected it not to be. And even if they up and adopted the U.S. Constitution, guess what: Islam would be respected.
The main difference would be, so would other religions. And women. And individual rights. Under sharia, fat chance.
We hope, for their own sakes, the Libyan people resist the apparently irresistible urge to tend toward the intolerance of sharia law. Where on Earth has the oppression of a people under strict religious law improved a nation’s economy or standing in the world? Does it advance the cause of peace with non-Muslims? How will Libyan women fare in a society in which they are treated like property and denied equal rights – and even, as Abdul-Jalil has promised, under polygamy? How can you have a system that is oppressive to its own people and hostile to outsiders and say it’s an improvement?
What’s the point of all that bloodshed and economic hardship and turmoil if they’re just going to trade one tyranny for another?“Moderate” Islamists? What does that even mean?
Augusta Chronicle, October 31, 2011
17-Year-Old Coptic Christian Student’s Murder a Test of Egypt’s New Anti-Discrimination Law
Egypt’s new anti-discrimination law — hastily announced by the transitional government in the wake of an international outcry over the October 9 killing of 27 mostly Coptic protestors in Cairo’s Maspero district — is being put to the test. The brutal murder of a teenage Christian student in southern Egypt on October 16 illustrates the ongoing threat that Egypt’s Christian minority faces from growing religious extremism, including within its public school system, and the discriminatory denial of justice in cases involving religion.
Ayman Nabil Labib was a 17-year-old high school student in the Upper Egyptian town of Mallawi, in the governorate of al-Minya. Egyptian media reports have claimed that he was killed in a fight at school that had no religious overtones. However, according to our trusted source who has asked to remain anonymous and who spoke directly with Nabil Labib Jaballah, the victim’s father, Ayman’s classmates claim that his Arabic-language teacher, Usama Mahmud Hasan, began insulting and harassing the teenager during class on October 16. He reportedly told Ayman to wipe off the cross from his wrist where, like the majority of members of the Coptic Orthodox community, he had a small tattoo of a traditional Coptic cross. When Ayman responded that the cross was a tattoo and therefore impossible to remove, and added that under his shirt he was also wearing a necklace with a cross, the teacher became incensed. Witnesses report that he turned to the other students and asked, “What are we going to do with him?”
According to classmates, two fellow students, Mustafa Walid Sayyid and Mustafa Hasanayn ‘Issam, were prompted by Hasan’s words and began to strike Ayman. Then they led a group of about 15 students in eventually chasing Ayman as he struggled to escape, finally cornering him in a bathroom. At that point, two school supervisors, Tahir Husayn and Muhammad Sayyid, reportedly forced Ayman into a teacher’s room, which provided the assailants with privacy. There the group murdered Ayman: His body allegedly showed marks of strangulation and having received a heavy blow to the head with a sharp object. His death certificate only specifies “a severe loss of circulatory and respiratory functions” as the cause of death, adding that “the condition is under investigation.”
According to Ayman’s father, both in our source’s interview and in a corresponding one recorded by Copts United, a number of students who were eyewitnesses to the attack on his son told him that they are afraid to confirm these allegations on record, out of fear of retaliation from the teachers and the families of the accused students. Thus, who actually killed Ayman is not known, though it is clear that the teacher, both supervisors, and the 15 students were all complicit. Ayman’s father admits, “In the midst of all this, I still don’t know who really killed my son, and why he was pulled to the teacher’s room and finally killed there.” This ambiguity, weeks after the incident, gives urgency to the call for a proper investigation.
Egyptian authorities initially responded by questioning the two student ringleaders, Sayyid and ‘Issam, and subsequently charging them with murder. The governor of al-Minya, the local police chief, and officials from the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (the ruling military authority, or SCAF) also visited Ayman’s family, who were receiving visitors at the office of the Coptic Orthodox bishop after their son’s funeral.
However, the teacher, Hasan, who incited the attack, and the supervisors, Husayn and Sayyid, who actively abetted the murders and may themselves have had a direct hand in the lethal violence, have not been arrested. These adults, who are public employees and whose actions led to Ayman’s death, have so far gotten off scot-free: The Assyrian International News Agency reports in its own account that although al-Minya’s governor referred these individuals to investigators, they have simply disappeared. None of the other students involved have been charged either.
In the days after the Maspero massacre, where military troops opened fire and deliberately ran over Coptic protestors with armored trucks, the Egyptian government tried to shore up its battered reputation by passing an anti-discrimination law that explicitly forbids discrimination on the basis of religion. But if the Egyptian authorities do not pursue justice for the school employees who incited and abetted Ayman’s murder, it will reveal that the government is continuing a policy of impunity for those who threaten and harm Egypt’s already anxious Copts.
This latest murder and the apparent failure of Egyptian justice have drawn little attention even within Egypt, where authorities have insisted that there was no sectarian dimension to this murder, despite clear evidence to the contrary. The United States and Egypt’s other allies must pressure the Egyptian Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to demonstrate its claims to be serious about protecting the country’s Coptic minority by pursuing a thorough and immediate investigation into all parties who may been involved, including Usama Hasan, Tahir Husayn, and Muhammad Sayyid of Mallawi. This investigation must include direct eyewitness reports from Ayman’s classmates and others who were present in the school, with clear guarantees of protection from retaliation from other teachers or school officials.During its uneasy ten months in power, the response of Egypt’s transitional government to attacks on the nation’s Coptic minority has been haphazard at best and complicit at worst, as in its role in the Maspero bloodshed on October 9. Its failure to pursue a thorough and fair investigation for the tragic murder of Ayman Labib will only reinforce this precedent of impunity, at a time when the nation’s downward spiral of religious intolerance is drawing the world’s attention. The SCAF should be looking for every opportunity to prove its critics wrong. Unfortunately, this case may yet confirm instead that its new anti-discrimination law is, in fact, only a public relations ploy.
Kurt J. Werthmuller, National Review Online, October 31, 2011
Prophet Muhammad to 'guest edit' French satirical magazine
The weekly has been rebaptised Sharia Hebdo for the occasion, and will feature on its cover a picture of Mohammed saying: "100 lashes if you don't die of laughter!"
On the back page, a picture of Mohammed wearing a red nose is accompanied by the words: "Yes, Islam is compatible with humour."
The cover was circulating on social media such as Twitter on Tuesday, with many users incensed and describing it as "puerile".
The weekly's publisher, known as Charb, rejected accusations that he was trying to provoke.
"We feel we're just doing our job as usual. The only difference is that this week, Mohammed is on the cover and that's quite rare," he told AFP.A Paris court in 2007 threw out a suit brought by two Muslim organisations against Charlie Hebdo for reprinting cartoons of prophet Mohammed that had appeared in a Danish newspaper, sparking angry protests by Muslims worldwide.
The Telegraph, October 31, 2011
Interim Libyan Leader Stirs Anger by Hinting at an End to a Curb on Polygamy
In announcing the success of the Libyan revolution and calling for a new, more pious nation, the head of the interim government, Mustafa Abdel-Jalil, also seemed to clear the way for unrestricted polygamy in a Muslim country where it has been limited and rare for decades.
It looked like a sizable step backward for women at a moment when much here — institutions, laws, social relations — is still in play after the end of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s 42 years of authoritarian rule.
In his speech, Mr. Abdel-Jalil declared that a Qaddafi-era law that placed restrictions on multiple marriages, which is a tenet of Islamic law, or Shariah, would be done away with. The law, which stated that a first wife had to give permission before others were added, for instance, had kept polygamy rare here.
“This law is contrary to Shariah and must be stopped,” Mr. Abdel-Jalil told the crowd, vowing that the new government would adhere more faithfully to Shariah. The next day he reiterated the point to reporters at a news conference: “Shariah allows polygamy,” he said. Mr. Abdel-Jalil is known for his piety.
He also remarked cryptically, “We will not abolish any law.”
Still, some women here saw the collective remarks of the chairman of the Transitional National Council as a menacing sign that the new Libya would mean new repression. Human-rights lawyers also viewed the comments as a clearly aimed swipe at the Qaddafi law on marriage, as did a scholar of Islamic law at the University of Tripoli.
. . .
“He should not have said this in his speech,” Ms. Omran added. “He didn’t focus on all the injured people” from the revolution, she said. “I didn’t expect this.”
Rehab Zehany, 20, who said Mr. Abdel-Jalil was merely following the dictates of the Koran, added, when asked if she would accept her husband taking a second wife: “Of course not! I would kill him!”
Unlike in its African Muslim neighbors to the south, where multiple-wife family compounds are frequently seen, polygamy has hardly been part of the essential fabric of daily life here. Under Colonel Qaddafi, there was a notion that polygamous marriages were the exception, said Azza Kamel Maghur, a lawyer here. Apart from the wife’s consent — delivered in front of a judge — a man had to give reasons for taking another wife.
Like other women here, Ms. Maghur, whose father was briefly foreign minister under Colonel Qaddafi, was sharply critical of the country’s temporary leader for proposing fundamental changes during a period of transition. “Women gained rights in the 1970s,” she said. “We don’t want to lose them.” Mr. Abdel-Jalil had gone beyond his limited brief, she said: “You can’t change the law related to interest or family law. No, no, no!”In Benghazi on Friday, several hundred men staged a demonstration in support of Mr. Abdel-Jalil and demanded that his prescriptions be carried out.
Adam Nossiter, New York Times, October 30, 2011
Pakistan: Man arrested from graveyard confesses to having sexually defiled 48 female corpses
“We had an inkling that something was not right at the graveyard but we did not know what was wrong,” he said. “We had gotten some of the gorkans [grave diggers] to work with us and keep an eye on this man for a month.” The DSP added that Riaz could not have been caught earlier as he had vanished out of the blue.
While talking to the media on Saturday, Riaz said that he had heard a new grave had been dug and a woman had been buried. “I went inside the grave like I usually do and got scared,” he said. “The dead woman’s face and teeth were disgusting. There was a light in her eyes that really horrified me. I got out as fast as I could and started running.” He added that when he saw the woman’s face, he had sworn never to indulge in these sort of activities ever again.
As Riaz started running away from the grave in fear, he caught the attention of grave diggers and other people. Soon there was a mob running after him with sticks and stones. Everyone, including the police thought that he was a thief or murderer. “We were conducting a snap check in the area when we found out,” said the police. “We thought the people had caught a robber or something, had no idea that it would be something so strange.” They claim that by the time they had figured out what Riaz did, the mob was ready to beat him up and tear him to pieces. They took him to the North Nazimabad police station for further investigations. Riaz claims that his family is from Sargodha but he has spent his entire life in Karachi. He joined the graveyard nearly eight years ago to water the plants and graves. “I got a job through one of the gorkans. His name was Wazir and he died two years ago,” he said. “Wazir taught me.”Riaz’s crime used to go undetected as the graves were ‘katcha’ or the earth was freshly dug.
The Express Tribune, October 30, 2011
UK Cancer patient died after being attacked by illegal Iranian immigrant in next bed
Anthony Wilson was throttled by the Iranian man four days after an operation to remove part of his bowel.
The 78-year-old, who had been battling cancer for three months, was asleep when he was assaulted by the immigrant, who had been brought into the hospital two days earlier complaining of breathing difficulties.
Three UK Border Agency guards, tasked with sitting next to the Iranian during his hospital stay, were forced to intervene after the unprovoked attack.
He was immediately removed from Hillingdon Hospital in Uxbridge, West London, and returned to a nearby immigration removal centre, where he is awaiting deportation.
The attack occurred in front of other shocked patients at about 8.20am on October 17. Police were called but the border guards had already dealt with the incident.
Just 20 hours later, Mr Wilson was pronounced dead at 4.20am the next day, when police were again called to the hospital.
A post-mortem examination concluded that Mr Wilson died from septicaemia. But an inquest has been ordered to determine whether the attack was a contributory factor.
Mr Wilson’s brother Jeffrey, 68, said: ‘I have lost my brother, who was my right-hand man. He used to do everything for me and I miss him.
‘He went for the operation and got through it and did all right, but someone may have taken his life away from him so I want to know the truth of what happened.’
Mr Wilson, who served in the Army as a teenager during National Service after the Second World War, was admitted to hospital on October 11.
. . .
Jeffrey insists his brother said he was strangled by the immigrant, but Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust claims the assault ‘took only seconds and amounted to him putting an arm round Mr Wilson’s neck’.
A spokesman said in a statement: ‘We regret that we have not yet met with Mr Wilson’s family about the incident and circumstances of his death but we were waiting for the results of the post-mortem, which have only just come in.
‘We will be contacting the family straight away now we have all the information. We are very sorry that they have been caused any extra distress after the sad death of Mr Wilson.’
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said they attended the hospital but were not investigating and the death was being treated as non-suspicious.
The UK Border Agency confirmed it is in the process of attempting to remove the Iranian man. A spokesman said: ‘We are reviewing this incident and, if necessary, will take appropriate action.‘The detainee was handcuffed and accompanied by three escorts when the incident occurred.’
Andy Whelan and Russell Myers, Mail Online, October 30, 2011
Post-Mubarak Egypt: Rights activists say Egyptian prisoner tortured to death
Popular anger over the use of torture was a key grievance behind the mass uprising that toppled Mubarak in February. Activists see the death of Essam Atta, 23, at a Cairo hospital late Thursday as an indication that little has changed since then. Egyptian authorities denied allegations that the guards had a hand in Atta’s death.
A lawyer for Atta’s family, Malik Adly, said Atta had been arrested while watching a street fight in February, convicted of thuggery in a military trial in February and sentenced to two years in Cairo’s Tora prison. Late Thursday, a prison guard brought Atta to a Cairo hospital, where he was pronounced dead from “unknown poisoning,” Adly said.
Atta had told his family that prison guards tortured him by using tubes to inject water into his mouth and anus, Adly said. After his death, other prisoners called Atta’s family to tell them he had died during torture, according to Adly.
“We accuse the officers of the Tora prison of being behind the victim’s death,” Adly said. “We know that the Interior Ministry in Egypt is filthy, practices filthy policies and doesn’t give any importance to human life.”
Cairo’s Nadim Center for Victims of Torture also accused guards of killing Atta.
An Egyptian security official denied the allegations, saying prison medics found that Atta had taken drugs and was suffering from exhaustion. When his condition worsened, he was taken to the hospital where he died.
Atta was arrested in 2004 for drug dealing, and in 2010 for illegal weapon possession, the official said. The two-year sentence he was serving at the time of his death was for squatting in a residential apartment, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media.
Some Egyptians drew parallels between Atta’s death and that of Khaled Said, a 28-year-old who was beaten to death by police officers in June 2010. Pictures of Said’s bloodied face, broken jaw and bruised body were widely circulated, and activists later used a Facebook page called “We are all Khaled Said” to help organize the anti-Mubarak uprising.
Many noted that Egyptian authorities had also portrayed Said as a drug dealer who died after choking on a packet of drugs he swallowed to hid it from police.
An independent forensic committee later found that the packet was forced into his mouth after his death, and two policemen were sentenced in the case to seven years in prison each earlier this week.
Within hours of Atta’s death, someone created a Facebook page called “We are all Essam Atta,” which contained photos of his dead body with white foam filling his mouth and gauze binding his head and hands.
The photos’ authenticity could not be independently verified.Adly said Atta’s family has asked Egypt’s state prosecutor for a full investigation into Atta’s death.
Ben Hubbard, AP, October 29, 2011
Pakistan: 9-year-old child-bride flees hospital following acid attack
According to hospital officials, Saima was brought in with over 46 per cent burn wounds and was in critical condition. “Her father spoke to police officials and recorded a statement but now they have both fled. She may not survive for long without medical assistance,” said Dr Ejaz Khalid.
On being contacted, Medical Superintendent DHQ Jhang, Dr Mumtaz Hussain told The Express Tribune that when the doctors visited the ward in the morning Saima was present on her bed but soon after her father, Muhammad Ijaz took her away. “He told me to tell the doctors he was taking her to a police station but the police are searching for them too,” said a patient in the bed next to Saima’s.
Satellite Town Police Station House Officer (SHO) Sajjad Ahmad Cheema said that the victim and her father had not appeared in the police station. Cheema said that Muhammad Ijaz had recently filed a complaint regarding his daughter’s acid attack and accused his nephew, her husband. “We registered the case and he was summoned to appear before the court on Friday afternoon in the presence of the accused party, including his brother and nephews,” Cheema said. “We have arrested all the accused nominated in the FIR,” he added.
Ijaz told police officials that he was a labourer and had divorced his first wife seven years ago. Saima was his daughter from his first marriage and she was living with his brother Muhammad Yusuf in Muddaki. “I sent her to a study at a madrassah and she was staying with my brother. A few months later my brother asked to wed her to his ten-year-old son Ahmed and since they were both the same age, I agreed to the match,” Ijaz told police.
“They beat her and were very cruel to her. On October 26, I went to visit her at my brother’s house and when I saw her I saw the burns on her face. She denied that she had been attacked at first but later told me her husband and his brothers Mohsin Ali, Ehsan Ali and Noor Muhammad had thrown acid on her. They kept saying it was a skin condition,” he told police.
Ijaz said that his sister Mumataz Bibi told him about the incident and said that Ahmed would attack her again if he didn’t take his daughter away.
“I took her away but then they came to my house while I was gone and attacked my daughter. The doctors have issued a medical report saying she has been burned. They said she would recover and the wounds weren’t critical,” he said.
Ijaz told police officials that his brother and his family were threatening him. Sattilate Town Police registered a case under Section 324, 337-A/1, 337 A/2, 337/L2 of the Pakistan Penal Code against Saima’s mother-in-law Kaneez Fatima, father-in-law Muhammad Yousaf, spouse Ahmed and brothers-in-law Mohsin and Asif.
SHO said the accused had been arrested on Friday evening adding that further investigations were underway. “We cannot complete the investigation until we know where Saima and her father are. Their testimony is key,” Cheema said.Names have been changed to protect the identity of the victim
Shamsul Islam, The Express Tribune, October 29, 2011
UK: MP threatened at mosque surgery by a mob of Muslims, called a "Jewish homosexual pig"
Mike Freer said it happened at North Finchley mosque in north London as he met constituents on Friday afternoon.
Mr Freer said about 12 people forced their way inside, with one of them calling him a "Jewish homosexual pig".
The trouble began after messages on the Muslims Against Crusades website urged supporters to target him, he said.
Mr Freer said a message posted ahead of the incident on the group's website made reference to Labour MP Stephen Timms, who was stabbed while holding a surgery in east London last year.
It warned the attack on Mr Timms should serve as a "piercing reminder" to politicians that "their presence is no longer welcome in any Muslim area".
The Finchley and Golders Green MP, a member of the Conservative Friends of Israel, said there was a vocal demonstration outside the mosque as he began his surgery, but then a second group of people arrived and forced their way inside.
Blood on hands
"One of them sat at a table where I was dealing with a constituent and was abusive," he said.
The MP said he was then escorted by staff at the mosque to a locked part of the building until assistance arrived.
Mr Freer said he only realised the potential danger he had been in when he was made aware of the website's reference to the attack on East Ham MP Mr Timms.
The message also stated that "as a member of the Conservative Party", Mr Freer had "the blood of thousands of Muslims on his hands".
"Had I seen the website beforehand, I suspect it might have been a bit more worrying," the MP said.
Mr Freer, who played a prominent role in the campaign against Palestinian activist Sheikh Raed Salah's visit to the UK earlier in the year, said he would "continue to condemn all forms of religious intolerance".
He added that he wanted Home Secretary Theresa May to monitor closely the actions of Muslims Against Crusades.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "Officers attended North Finchley Mosque at 4.10pm on Friday after a disturbance by protesters inside the building."There were no arrests."
BBC News, October 29, 2011
Turkey: Imam who led alternative Friday prayers detained with fake banknotes
The İstanbul Police Department’s Anti-smuggling and Organized Crime Bureau received a notification about a counterfeiting lead, warning them that fake banknotes made in İstanbul’s Bağcılar district would be sent to Bitlis. After receiving the notification, the police department started an investigation and carried out an operation in the neighborhood where the fake money was made. The police found out that a minibus carrying the money to Bitlis had just departed.
The İstanbul Police Department contacted the Bolu Police Department’s Anti-smuggling and Organized Crime Bureau to intersect the minibus on the road. The Bolu Police Department stopped the minibus, finding TL 70,000 in fake banknotes in the luggage. The police detained Cindi Beyhan, who was driving the minibus, and took him to the police station, where he confessed in an interrogation that the fake banknotes belonged to him. The police revealed that he was one of the imams who led alternative Friday prayers as part of the BDP’s civil disobedience campaign.The BDP earlier launched a civil disobedience campaign against the government in the east. Refusing to be led in Friday prayers by state imams, the people started to perform Friday prayers in the streets, rather than in state mosques, with ordinary people whose religious education for leading such religious rituals was questionable. Beyhan was referred to the Bakırköy Courthouse in İstanbul after his interrogation at the police station.
Today's Zaman, October 28, 2011
US Congressman: Muslim Obama adviser leaked secret reports to media
Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, was questioning Napolitano at a House hearing Wednesday when he confronted the secretary with an allegation reported by Patrick Poole of PJ Media about Mohamed Elibiary, president and CEO of the Freedom and Justice Foundation of Carrollton, Texas.
As WND reported one year ago, Napolitano swore in Elibiary as a member of her agency's Homeland Security Advisory Council. Elibiary has been a strong supporter of the radical Islamic theologian Sayyid Qutb, whose teachings inspired and continue to govern al-Qaida and Islamic jihadist organizations worldwide.
Former assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew McCarthy notes that the DHS advisory group helped devise the new Obama counterterrorism strategy. McCarthy, who prosecuted the perpetrators of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, said the strategy "has law-enforcement pare back their intelligence-gathering activities and take their marching orders from 'community partners.'"
WND reported in 2004 that Elibiary spoke at a conference that honored the founder of the Iranian Islamic revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini. Elibiary has strongly criticized the U.S. government's prosecution of fundraisers for Hamas and is a defender of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which FBI evidence shows is a front group for Hamas.
Asked by Gohmert if Elibiary was given a security clearance, Napolitano said that "everybody on the Homeland Security Advisory Council ultimately gets a secret clearance."
Gohmert – chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security – also asked the DHS chief if she was aware that Elibiary delivered a speech at the pro-Khomeini event.
She replied only with, "I'm not aware of all the places he has spoken."
The Texas lawmaker asked Napolitano if she knew that Elibiary is alleged to have accessed the Homeland Security State and Local Intelligence Community of Interest database Oct. 19 from his home and used material he found to shop a story to a media outlet on "Islamophobia" directed at Texas Gov. Rick Perry and his state government.
Napolitano said she was not aware.
"I'm telling you it happened," said Gohmert, who asked the secretary whether he should initiate a probe or leave it to her to investigate.
As the congressman's time for questioning expired, Napolitano said that since she didn't know the facts, she or someone in her department would look into it.
The Homeland Security Advisory Council, part of the executive office of the president, was formed by an executive order by President Bush in 2002.
Elibiary has not responded to WND's request for comment.
Poole's report said that Texas Department of Public Safety officials have confirmed that Elibiary has access to the Homeland Security State and Local Intelligence Community of Interest database, which contains hundreds of thousands of intelligence reports and products.
Poole said he received confirmation from a left-leaning media outlet that Elibiary had recently approached them, asking to do a story attacking the Texas DPS.
A source with the media outlet told Poole that Elibiary approached them with reports marked "For Official Use Only" that the Texas Muslim leader claimed "showed a pattern of Islamophobia at the department."
The media source said the reports were not as Elibiary "had billed them to us," and they saw "nothing remotely resembling Islamophobia."
"I think he was hoping we would bite and not give it too much of a look in light of the other media outfits jumping on the Islamophobia bandwagon," the source told Poole.
The source said it was clear that Elibiary, in an attempt to promote himself, wanted to be quoted as a source in the story.The source noted his outlet has used Elibiary as an unnamed source in previous stories.
Art Moore, WND, October 28, 2011
Mother kept dead fetus in freezer because she was unable to bury it according to Muslim rites
But the tragic truth was soon revealed when police arrived at the Pearl Crescent Street home in Vygieskraal, Athlone, on Wednesday afternoon.
The woman at the centre of the storm, Shireen Roykers, showed police a medical report and release papers from Groote Schuur Hospital stating she had miscarried twins last week.
And the hospital had released one of her babies and kept the other for educational purposes.
Police say Shireen told them she was Muslim and was not able to bury the foetus according to Muslim rites because she didn’t have the money.
She decided to place the foetus in her family’s freezer until she could afford a burial.
When the Daily Voice arrived at the scene, a mob of angry community residents chased after Shireen as she walked frantically between shacks clutching a plastic packet containing the foetus.
She refused to speak to the Daily Voice.
Residents shouted “murderer” and asked why she had placed a baby in a freezer.
Shireen’s niece Charmaine Abrahams, 18, reveals she was the one who contacted police after she discovered the parcel she was given was not meat but a foetus.
“My aunt was hungry and she was looking for food,” she says.
“She came to my home with my older sister. She asked me to keep the parcel in the fridge.
“But when I later opened it up, I saw it was a baby and I got such a shock because I thought it was meat.”
She then alerted police.
Charmaine explains that her aunt was desperate for taxi fare and money for a burial and stopped by their home for help.
“We didn’t know she was at Groote Schuur Hospital last week Wednesday,” she adds.
“She said afterward she is being treated for stomach cancer and during the treatment she miscarried the twins without even knowing she was pregnant.
“She needed a R10 for taxi fare to get to her other family for a R150 to bury the child.”
Meanwhile, police spokesperson, Warrant Officer Filander says police suspected no foul play after the woman produced a letter from the hospital.“She showed police a letter that the hospital released the baby and said she didn’t have the money to bury the baby and we therefore didn’t make an arrest or suspect foul play.”
Genevieve Serra, IOL News, October 27, 2011
UK: Sex offender asylum seeker who tried to snatch 14-year-old boy jailed for 16 months
Iranian-born Asghar Najafi, 43, had already been on the sex offenders register for four years when he attempted to kidnap the teenager near Blackburn Market.
A judge labelled him a ‘high-risk’ to children and his asylum status is now set to be reviewed by the Home Office.
Calls have now been made to insist that Najafi, who claimed he came to England to escape the political situation in his native country, should be expelled from the UK.
Paul Houston, whose daughter Amy was knocked down and killed by illegal immigrant Aso Ibrahim Mohammed, said he was ‘absolutely horrified’ by the case.
And Blackburn MP Jack Straw, a former Home Secretary and Justice Minister, said more needed to be done to make sure that people who commit serious crimes while seeking asylum are expelled.
Preston Crown Court heard that Najafi, who arrived in this country in 2004, was engaged to be married to an Iranian fiancee. His immigration status is still to be determined.
But because he had received a jail sentence of more than 12 months, under immigration legislation the Home Office would assess his case, the court heard.
Mr Houston said: “I have got absolutely no problem with genuine asylum seekers, I never have had. But I just hope that they deport this guy because he is a danger to society.”
Mr Straw said: “I know that senior judges are very concerned about cases like this. The damage it is doing to the British judiciary is substantial.
“We must make sure that in situations like this criminals are held in custody until they are sent home.”
Najafi’s victim was travelling on a bus home from school when he became aware that Najafi was staring at him, the court heard.
Prosecutor Roger Green said that the boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was so uneasy that he left the bus a few stops early in Ainsworth Street.
Najafi caught up with him near the market and placed both hands on the boy’s shoulders and said to him ‘come with me’.
“The defendant held on tightly as (the boy) tried to push away from him and he felt the defendant trying to steer him in a different direction,” said Mr Green.
The boy managed to struggle free and then produced his mobile phone, warning Najafi that he would call the police.
Najafi, of Pine Street, Blackburn, fled and the boy caught another bus home, where he reported the incident to his parents, who then alerted police.
Police examined CCTV from the market area and tracked down Najafi, who was arrested and taken to Greenbank station.
Questioned by officers he initially denied the allegation and claimed he did not speak English. But in court he pleaded guilty to attempted abduction.
The court heard that he had previously been convicted by Blackburn magistrates of indecent exposure in 2007 and placed on the sex offenders register.
Najafi approached a 16-year-old girl in a bus shelter and exposed himself before carrying out a sex act.
Passing sentence, Judge Michael Byrne said he was satisfied that the offence was sexually motivated.
And referring to a pre-sentence report, in which Najafi refused to accept he had problems, the judge said there were continuing concerns that the defendant presented a ‘high risk of serious harm’, particularly in relation to children.Stephen Leake, defending, said that the offence was more ‘opportunistic’ than pre-meditated and there had been no lasting physical or psychological harm to the schoolboy victim.
Peter Magill, Lancashire Telegraph, October 27, 2011
US: Muslims Say Crosses at Catholic University Violate 'Human Rights'
The investigation alleges that Muslim students “must perform their prayers surrounded by symbols of Catholicism – e.g., a wooden crucifix, paintings of Jesus, pictures of priests and theologians which many Muslim students find inappropriate.”
A spokesperson for the Office of Human Rights told Fox News they had received a 60-page complaint against the private university. The investigation, they said, could take as long a six months.
. . .
Patrick Reilly, the president of the Cardinal Newman Society, an organization that promotes Catholic identity among Catholic schools, seemed stunned by the complaint.
“I don’t know what the attorney wants them to do – if he wants them to actually move the Basilica or if the Muslim students can find someplace where they don’t have to look at it,” he told Fox News.
Catholic University, he said, is a Catholic institution.
“One wouldn’t expect a Jewish institution to be responsible for providing liturgical opportunities for other faiths and I wouldn’t expect a Catholic institution to do that,” he said.
“This attorney is really turning civil rights on its head,” he said. “He’s using the law for his own discrimination against the Catholic institution and essentially saying Catholic University cannot operate according to Catholic principles.”Read coverage from Catholic University’s student newspaper by clicking here.
Todd Starnes, Fox News (blog), October 27, 2011
Libyan rebel fighter sodomized Gaddafi with a knife before his death
An analysis of video footage suggested a Libyan fighter sodomised the former Libyan strongman after he was captured near his hometown of Sirte, GlobalPost said in a report yesterday.
A frame by frame analysis of an exclusive GlobalPost video clearly shows the rebel trying to insert some kind of stick or knife into Gaddafi’s rear end, said the report.Abuse of prisoners under any circumstance is not permissible according to the Geneva Conventions, so international and human rights groups call for a formal investigation into how the former Libyan leader was killed. In video clips that have emerged of his capture, Gaddafi can be seen injured but alive. Later he is seen with what appears to be gunshot wounds to his head and chest.
Hafeez Rehman, Allvoices, October 26, 2011
Arab Spring in Tunisia: The results are in, and the Islamists have won
Tunisia's vote marks the first time that an Islamist party has won a majority in an Arab election since Hamas' 2006, which resulted in a split of the Palestinian territories between two rival factions. The Arab world's only other experience with an Islamist win came in Algeria's 1991 parliamentary race, during which the military swept in to block a full Islamist victory, sparking a bloody 10-year civil war. Ennahda's sweep in Tunisia is unlikely to yield the same results; most participants and monitors hailed the election's peaceful and transparent process as a success, and the military has appeared both cooperative and willing to cede power to a civilian government.
Abigail Hauslohner, TIME, October 26, 2011
Use of Islamic law OK in civil case, US judge rules
The decision by the 2nd District Court of Appeal in Lakeland to decline the appeal of the Islamic Education Center of Tampa sends the case back to Hillsborough County Circuit Judge Richard A. Nielsen. Nielsen's decision in March to allow the case to proceed under "ecclesiastical Islamic law" drew national attention when the ruling was criticized by conservative bloggers.
The case has its roots in 2002, when the mosque ousted four of its founding members; those founding members later sued the mosque. One of the main issues of dispute was who would be responsible for how to spend $2.5 million Florida's Turnpike Enterprise had paid the mosque for 3.4 acres needed to widen Veterans Expressway.
When he made his March ruling, Nielsen said courts have ruled "that ecclesiastical law controls certain relations between members of a religious organization, whether a church, synagogue, temple or mosque."
The uproar over the ruling went overboard, said Lee Segal, a Clearwater attorney representing the ousted trustees. He said the ruling follows established legal precedent and does not mean Nielsen is allowing Islamic law to trump U.S. law.
"When the parties agree (before the trial that) they are bound to Islamic law, they can be bound to Islamic law," Segal said. "As long as what you are agreeing to doesn't violate the constitution of the United States, you can apply any type of law."
Though the issue of Islamic law has garnered attention, the legal fight over the lawsuit is complicated, with much of it revolving around the arbitration process.On Monday, Paul Thanasides, the attorney for the mosque, filed a new motion to dismiss the case because of lack of jurisdiction.
José Patiño Girona, The Tampa Tribune, October 25, 2011
Deadly explosions hit Southern Thailand
Officials said 15 blasts were heard across Yala and caused chaos in the town, marking the seventh anniversary of a protest in the insurgency-plagued region that left 85 anti-government demonstrators dead.
At least one civilian was killed and two rebels died when their explosives were prematurely detonated on Tuesday evening, according to governor Krisada Boonrach.
An AFP photographer at a local hospital said more than 50 wounded people, some in a serious condition, had arrived for medical treatment after the blasts, which caused a power blackout across the city.
The violence was latest in a series of increasingly brazen attacks by shadowy rebels in the Muslim-majority Thai south, which has been plagued by more than eight years of conflict claiming more than 4,800 lives.
Tuesday's blasts, initially thought to be caused by a mixture of motorcycle and remote-controlled bombs, came on the anniversary one the region's deadliest incidents on October 25, 2004.
Seven people were shot dead as security forces broke up a protest in the town of Tak Bai, and 78 more suffocated or were crushed to death in trucks while being transported to a detention centre.
Rights groups have said the failure of Thai authorities to hold security forces to account over the deaths has fuelled further violence and alienation in the southern region bordering Malaysia.
The insurgents are not thought to be part of a global jihad movement but are instead rebelling against a long history of perceived discrimination against ethnic Malay Muslims by governments in the Buddhist-majority nation.
Deep South Watch, which closely monitors the conflict, said earlier this year that more than half of the victims are Muslims, many apparently targeted because they are seen as traitors for cooperating with the local authorities.
On Sunday at least seven people were killed in back-to-back shooting and bomb attacks in a town in Narathiwat province, neighbouring Yala.
Late last month, more than a dozen suspected insurgents attacked a school in Narathiwat, killing four soldiers and seriously wounding one child.Teachers working in state schools are frequently targeted because they are seen as a symbol of government authority and an education system perceived as an effort by Bangkok to impose Buddhist culture.
AFP, October 25, 2011
Pakistan: In-laws suspected of ‘neutering’ man for eloping
By the time ASI Manzoor Jamali got there, 24-year-old Sajjad Pathan was bleeding profusely. The ASI and his team immediately took Pathan to Civil Hospital, Hyderabad where Dr Idrees Qureshi tried to save him. Luckily he was able to save his life, but the young man’s private parts were not as lucky. They were severed from his body six hours before.
According to Pathan’s older brother Shahzad, his brother was paying the price for eloping with a girl named A two years ago. Pathan used to work in a hair transplant clinic when the two fell in love and ran away. Shahzad said that the girl’s family was displeased with the marriage. He added that her family lived in Karachi but was actually from Tando Adam in Sanghar.
“After they got married Sajjad and A lived with my parents in Tando Thoro, Hyderabad,” he said. “Their relationship with A’s family improved eventually and they went to visit them some three months ago.” Shahzad claims that Sajjad’s father-in-law Ghulam Hussian Buriro and brother-in-law Sarwan Buriro were to blame. He added that A and her one-year-old son Ayan were also missing.
“After the first visit three months ago, Sajjad’s in-laws started visiting them quite frequently at their house in Junejo Colony,” he said. “I believe that they had plotted to do this all along.” He was quite upset and added that this would not have happened had his brother still been living with their parents. Pathan’s friend Aqil Samo said that he had warned his friend about becoming overly familiar with his in-laws. Samo is a very close friend of Pathan’s and was one of the few to know about his elopement. “It seemed very fishy to me from the beginning, once Sajjad started meeting up with his in-laws frequently, he just forgot about his family,” he said.
Another friend of Pathan’s, Syed Karam Ali said that Sarwan Buriro had been staying with the couple for two to three days before the incident. “Sajjad told the police that four men, including Sarwan, had assaulted him and had taken away his wife and son,” he said. “It has been over five hours since Sajjad was brought to the hospital but his in-laws have not visited or made any sort of contact – it just goes to prove that they were behind this.”Shahzad said that they would register an FIR against the in-laws for attempted murder and abduction but no case was registered when this report was filed. Pathan’s in-laws were not available for comment.
Z Ali, The Express Tribune, October 25, 2011
UK: Students protest after college bans segregation curtain used by Muslims
But the college says the room is for students and staff “of all faiths and none” and its actions are in line with its values of equality and inclusion.
A group of students have now started a petition demanding the curtain be replaced and have so far collected 30 signatures, including men and women of different faiths.
“Having the curtain is important because in Islam the men and women have to prostrate to pray,” said business student Kamil Alp,20.
“It’s very inappropriate if a man does it in the presence of a woman when she is also prostrating.”
Prostration involves having the forehead, nose, both hands, knees and all toes touching the ground at the same time.
Several years ago, some students erected their own dividing curtain to support segregated prayer. But it was removed by college staff.
Kamil, said many Muslim students were being forced to pray in the corridors.
“I feel discriminated against as they have given us the prayer room but are not letting us use it in the way we need to” he added.
A college spokeswoman said the room had been designed as a place where students and staff – of all faiths or none – could practice individual reflection or prayer.
She said the college had made arrangements with mosques for Muslim students requiring segregation.
“We are aware not all students are happy with the current arrangements,” she said. We need to balance the needs of all students to enable access in line with our values of inclusion.“However we welcome ongoing debate on the issue.”
Jasmine Coleman, Hackney Gazette, October 24, 2011
UK: Mum hits out as sex offender who assaulted her child still lives in area
Zabhullah Boota, then 52, was found guilty of sexual assault and inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity in November last year.
His young victim’s mother said comments made by the sentencing judge led her to believe Boota was to be evicted from his home in Lydgate Drive, Lidget Green.
But she still sees him regularly, causing distress to her and her daughter.
Sentencing Boota to a community order at Bradford Crown Court on December 17 last year, Recorder Benjamin Nolan QC said he had considered imposing a residence order requiring him to live somewhere other than his home because his victim still lived in the neighbourhood.
He said: “One can see that (Boota returning home) is likely to cause aggravation and distress. However, I hear you are, in effect, being evicted by the housing association that rents you your home and I anticipate you will have to move in some matter of months in any event.”
Bradford Council’s latest electoral register still lists Boota as living at the Lydgate Drive address.
And a spokesman for the housing association, which cannot be named for legal reasons, said it had not been made aware of the judge’s comments.
He said: “We were not party to these legal proceedings. The judge’s comments were not communicated to us and we have no record of them on file.
“We cannot evict someone from their home without an order from the court. We continue to monitor the situation and work with both families in what is a delicate matter.”
The child’s mother, who cannot be named to protect her daughter’s identity, said: “Because of their breakdown in communication we are still suffering.
“You would think that the judge would be making these comments on the back of solid evidence.
“From my interpretation of what he said, he wasn’t going to order him to live somewhere else because he was going to be evicted anyway.
“I would like someone to tell me what the hell is happening.
“We have to see him every day, he stands in the garden. Because of that I have been severely depressed, I have only just started feeling better.
“I think of it and it is absolutely sickening the way everything has turned out. I was under the impression he was going to be evicted.
“My daughter is really struggling, she still has nightmares.
“Her innocence was taken away. She doesn’t trust any adults, and a child shouldn’t feel that way.”
Lesley Mclean, West Yorkshire divisional manager for the charity Victim Support, said: “Victim Support helps thousands of victims of sexual assault a year and we know just how devastating the crime can be and how it can leave a lasting impact.
“For victims of sexual assault to continue to live in fear of the offender, particularly if they are living near to the victim, is unacceptable.”
A spokesman for the West Yorkshire Probation Trust said it prepares pre-sentence reports as requested by courts to provide additional information about offences and offenders to assist with sentencing decisions.
She said: “The pre-sentence report will be usually compiled by interviewing the offender, talking to other local agencies and organisations. It will include information about a range of issues including risk, accommodation, employment, mental health etc where they have an impact on the offence.”The reports are only available to courts and prisons, she added.
Tanya O'Rourke, Bradford Telegraph and Argus, October 24, 2011
US: Mad dad chases teen who allegedly groped daughter
Witnesses told police that the 18-year-old suspect grabbed the young woman’s crotch, causing her to scream and spin away.
The Salem News reports that the woman’s father took off after the teenager down the busy Essex Street pedestrian mall, shouting for help. Bystanders as well as bouncers at a local bar stopped the fleeing suspect and held him until police arrived.
The police report says Yousef Hashem of West Bridgewater was arrested on charges of indecent assault and battery and disturbing the peace.It was not clear if Hashem had an attorney.
Associated Press, October 24, 2011
Canadian Christian, Hindu, and Jewish groups protest Muslim conference hosting antisemitic speakers
Holding Israeli flags, protesters charged that four Islamic speakers invited to the conference were spreading messages of homophobia and violence towards Jewish people.
“They made inciteful statements against Jews and others,” alleged Meir Weinstein, national director of the Jewish Defence League of Canada. “We don’t think they should be given a platform here in Canada. We consider their stance as they’d like to see Canada become an Islamic state to be dangerous.”
Some of the people scheduled to speak at the conference included Abdurraheem Green, Yusuf Chambers and Shaykh Hussain Yee. The only confirmed speaker was Hamza Andreas Tzortzis.
“Our position has always been to expose and confront these organizations and that’s what we have to do,” said Weinstein.
The two-hour protest became heated after Saleem Chagtai of the Islamic Education and Research Academy that organized the conference approached protesters to offer them a box of baklava pastries.
The two sides engaged in a short shouting match before police separated them.
“Get the hell out of here,” screamed one protester.
Canadian Hindu Advocacy and Christian groups also joined the Jewish Defence League by holding placards outside the South Sheridan Way mosque that read: “Stop Islamic Racism.”
This marks the first time the Calling the World Back to Allah conference took place at the centre, Chagtai said. He added the message for the roughly 500 in attendance was how to be a better Muslim.
“Our message to the Muslims in Toronto and Canada is clear: It’s time to engage with the people you have not traditionally because of historical reasons,” he said. “I gave a speech about how important it is to engage with the Jewish community. We’ve been talking about how we need to give the invitation and talk about morality and spirituality with the lesbian, gay and bisexual and transgendered community. It’s time to start reaching out to them.”Chagtai called the protest “sad.”
Jenny Yuen, Toronto Sun, October 23, 2011
Muslims assault headmaster after he asks students to remove veils
However, he retracted his order, as the student refused to comply with it on Friday. The student complained to her parents, and MIM activists. With this, irate MIM activists barged into the school and attacked Mr Tippeswamy, without seeking an explanation.Several teachers associations condemned the physical attack on the teacher and took out a rally up to collectorate.
Deccan Chronicle, October 23, 2011
Uganda: Muslims mourn Gaddafi, accuse the West of targeting Libyan oil
Anger and tears characterised the special prayers held at the Gaddafi Mosque in Old Kampala. Speaker after speaker praised the fallen Libyan leader who helped fund several projects in the country including the Gaddafi Mosque built at Shs50b.
Several speakers attacked the West and accused them of targeting Libyan oil and killing Gaddafi in the process. The Muslims also accused NATO of using divide- and –rule tactics to exterminate Gaddafi and his loyalists.
Sheikh Abdulkadir Mbogo, who led the Friday summon which was dedicated to Gaddafi’s contribution to the Muslim community in Uganda, said, “he was killed because of jealousy”.
He warned Muslims against judging Gaddafi and reminded them that every soul will eventually come face to face with the angel of death.
“Gaddafi has died a hero, because he has done a lot for the Muslim community and the country,” he told the congregation that sat still, many shedding tears.
Gadaffi Mosque, one of the biggest in sub-Saharan Africa with a capacity of about 30,000, was filled to capacity. Ousted Libyan leader was killed Thursday by National Transitional Council (NTC) forces in their final assault on the last pocket of resistance in his hometown Sirte.
NTC fighters who had fought in the bloody seven-month conflict that toppled the veteran despot at the cost of more than 25,000 lives, erupted in jubilation at the news, which followed earlier reports that Gaddafi had been captured.
As photographs and mobile video footage of Gaddafi’s blood-stained body continued to circulate across the globe, the bare reality facing Libyans could only be imagined with the awareness of the challenges that his 42-year rule now brings to his countrymen.
The NTC has less than one month to establish a transitional government and another year thereafter, organise elections, but even before that, Libyans must return to their normal lives.
Sheikh Amir Mutyaba, the former Ambassador to Libya in the late Iddi Amin’s government, gave an emotional account of Gaddafi’s life and his relationship with Uganda since 1975.
He broke down as he narrated how he met Gaddafi at the age of 23 as an ambassador. Sheikh Mutyaba said Gaddaffi had a dream to unite Africa and had offered him $30 million to open up a Bank in Europe but the money was confiscated by Americans.
“But he has died as a hero and Allah will bless him for his kind heart and the oil diggers will be punished.”
Deputy Mufti Sheikh Abdul Hayyi Mukiibi praised Gaddafi for constructing the Gaddafi main Mosque, Voice of Africa Radio, Muslim schools and the Muslin Call Society, an organisation supporting Muslim programmes in the country.
At Kibuli Mosque, supreme Mufti Zubair Kayongo and Sheikh Obed Kamulegeya asked Muslims to pray for peace in Libya.
“The Muslim community and the country at large have lost a brother and great leader ... But we call for reconciliation and peace to return to Libya,” Sheikh Kayongo said.Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago, who announced that he was going to Mecca for Hijjah, said: “Gaddafi’s death should be a lesson to other leaders. The leaders should know when to leave power.”
Yasiin Mugerwa & Wandera Ouma, Sunday Monitor, October 22, 2011
Canada: Activist who fought against Muslim stereotypes charged with trying to export assault rifle parts
But the outspoken 26-year-old activist had little to say this week after appearing in a Montreal courtroom to face a charge alleging she had violated a United Nations Security Council arms embargo that prohibits the export of weapons to Lebanon.
“I really have no comment to make,” she said. At the bungalow where she lives in suburban Laval, friends and family likewise declined to talk about the case. “She’s finding the whole ordeal very difficult,” her lawyer, Richard Prihoda, said.
Police said Ms. Diab was arrested at Montreal’s Trudeau airport on May 19 as she was departing for Beirut. In her luggage, investigators allegedly found parts of AR-15 assault rifles. Other parts were allegedly shipped separately.
Police said the components could have been assembled into working firearms. “If you put all the pieces together you could build or make two weapons with it,” said Cpl. Luc Thibault, a spokesman at the RCMP’s “C” Division in Montreal.
She pleaded not guilty on Thursday and returns to court Nov. 10. She is the only person charged so far in relation to the alleged scheme, which comes as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is struggling to staunch the flow of illicit arms into an unstable Lebanon.
The RCMP investigation was opened eight months ago by the Integrated National Security Enforcement Team in Montreal, a unit set up following the 9/11 terrorist attacks and made up of Mounties, Quebec police and Montreal police officers.
“This investigation launched in February 2011,” Cpl. Thibault said. “It targeted a Canadian citizen of Lebanese origin who exported parts of assault weapons, which they call an AR-15.” He added, “Any criminal act that poses a potential threat to national security is dealt with very seriously by all law enforcement agencies including our national security enforcement team.”Criminal charges against alleged violators of UN sanctions are rare in Canada, but not unprecedented. Last year, Mahmoud Yadegari of Toronto was sentenced to three years for attempting to ship nuclear-related items to Iran despite a UN embargo.
Stewart Bell and Graeme Hamilton, National Post, October 21, 2011
Gaddafi begs for his life before being executed by a frenzied mob of rebel fighters
The final humiliation for the man who had so brutally ruled Libya for 42 years came when he was hauled from his hiding place in a sewer.
Shocking video clearly showed the broken 69-year-old tyrant was alive as fighters, waving their guns in the air, threw him on to the bonnet of a jeep.
Wounded and apparently dazed, Gaddafi appeared deluded to the end, asking his captors: 'What did I do to you?'
Moments after he begged for his life he was shot 'like a dog in the street'.
Another video captured his bloodied body being dragged through the streets of his home city of Sirte, to be paraded later before celebrating crowds in the nearby port town of Misrata.
Confirmation of the death sparked wild scenes of celebration across Libya with tens of thousands taking to the streets.
Celebratory gunfire rang out across the capital, Tripoli. Cars honked their horns and people embraced each other.
In Sirte, ecstatic rebels celebrated the city’s fall after weeks of bloody siege by firing endless rounds into the sky.
Gaddafi’s death closes a chapter in the Nato-led military campaign to help rebel forces remove him from power. Ever since the fall of Tripoli, the hunt for Gaddafi had prevented rebels from claiming outright victory.
France’s defence minister announced today that the multi-million pounds bombing campaign of Libya by airforces including the RAF is now over.
‘The military operation is complete,’ said Alain Juppe, in Paris. ‘All Libyan territory is under the control of the National Transitional Council, and subject to some transitional technicalities, the NATO operation has come to an end.
‘The objective of helping the National Transitional Council to liberate their territory is now achieved,’ Mr Juppe added.
‘They will enter a phase of reconstruction, or of construction. It is about establishing the rule of law, which never existed. ‘
A meeting later today will decide the technicalities of winding up the operation which has cost British taxpayers an estimated £300 million.
US president Barack Obama last night announced that the mission would 'soon come to an end', although Foreign Secretary William Hague struck a more cautious note.
'We will want to be sure that there are no remaining pockets of pro-Gaddafi fighters who can again become a threat to the civilian population,' he said.
Last night it emerged that RAF Tornados helped launch the final airstrike by flying surveillance missions which cleared the way for French fighter jets to bomb a Gaddafi convoy.
There were also claims that RAF jets carried out another raid which led to the wounding of Gaddafi’s favourite son, Saif al-Islam.
The conflict has already cost British taxpayers more than £1billion and today Nato chiefs will decide whether to end the aerial campaign.
. . .
From the clear skies over Sirte, aerial surveillance which included RAF Tornado planes saw the large convoy emerging from Neighbourhood Two.
Officials knew it was a high-value target because it was so big and they could detect command and control was active with it – giving them the right to attack it.
First, a U.S. drone strike was called in with hellfire missiles and then French warplanes launched a second strike on the convoy as it sped west along the coastal highway.
Last night 15 pick-up trucks mounted with heavy machine guns lay burnt out, smashed and smouldering next to an electricity sub station 20 yards from the main road, about two miles west of Sirte.
They had clearly been hit by a force far beyond anything the motley army the former rebels have assembled during eight months of revolt to overthrow the once feared leader. Inside the trucks, still in their seats, were the charred skeletal remains of drivers and passengers killed instantly by the strike.
Others lay mutilated and contorted strewn in the grass. There were some 50 bodies in all.
Rebel commander Adel Busamir said those Gaddafi loyalists who remained alive had realised there was no escape and turned back. ‘my master is here’
A wounded Gaddafi limped through some trees, fighters said, and sought shelter in a storm drain. Several bodyguards were with him.
‘At first we fired at them with anti-aircraft guns, but it was no use,’ said rebel commander Salem Bakeer. ‘Then we went in on foot. One of Gaddafi’s men came out waving his rifle in the air and shouting surrender, but as soon as he saw my face he started shooting at me.
‘Then I think Gaddafi must have told him to stop. “My master is here, my master is here”, he said. “Muammar Gaddafi is here and he is wounded”.
‘We went in and brought Gaddafi out. He was saying, “What’s wrong? What’s wrong? What’s going on?”.’
At the time of capture, Gaddafi was already wounded with gunshots to his leg and to his back, Bakeer said. He was then dragged 50 yards to a black Jeep and thrown on to the bonnet. Several rebel fighters surrounded him, beating him about the face, before he was shot in the stomach and head.
One of those reported to have been killed along with Gaddafi was his son, Mo’tassim, who had been organising the defence of Sirte and his army chief Abu Bakr Younis Jabr. The bodies of three men, apparently Gaddafi bodyguards, lay at the entrance to the sewer, one in shorts probably due to a bandaged wound on his leg.
Four more bodies lay at the other end of the pipes. All black men, one had his brains blown out while another had been decapitated.
The fighters who killed Gaddafi are believed to have come from Misrata, which suffered a brutal weeks-long siege by his forces during the eight-month civil war.
It was to their home city that they took his body in an ambulance as Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril said: ‘We have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Muammar Gaddafi has been killed.’
The body was paraded through the streets of Misrata on top of a vehicle surrounded by a large crowd chanting, ‘The blood of the martyrs will not go in vain,’ according to footage aired on Al-Arabiya television.Abdel-Jalil Abdel-Aziz, a doctor who was part of the medical team which accompanied the body in the ambulance, said: ‘You can’t imagine my happiness … I can’t describe my happiness.’
David Williams, Mail Online, October 21, 2011
Muslim Rebels Kill 7 More in Philippines
The violence is severely testing a cease-fire instated as the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front hold peace talks to end the bloody decades-long insurgency.
Seven soldiers and three officers were wounded following attacks by rebel fighters late Thursday on an army convoy, a military delivery truck and a joint army-police patrol in three townships close to each other in Zamboanga Sibugay province, regional police chief Elpidio de Asis.
Rebel spokesman Von al Haq said the attacks were the initiative of local rebel forces in retaliation for the army's alleged "indiscriminate shelling" of Muslim villages Saturday and Thursday, which prompted hundreds of villagers to seek shelter in homes of relatives in nearby communities.
He told The Associated Press the rebel "leadership is working very hard to prevent this from escalating" and ordered their fighters "to stay put."
Col. Santiago Baluyot, commander of the army's 102nd Brigade in Zamboanga Sibugay, said the first clashes were Saturday in Payao township when troops backing police officers who were going to serve an arrest warrant to a crime suspect were fired upon.
He said this prompted the army to hit back with "protective fire" using Howitzer cannons. This happened again on Thursday. He said the rebels were not supposed to be in that area.
"Why should they occupy that? It's a clear violation of peace talk terms," he said.
The rebels and the government are negotiating a peace settlement of the decades-long rebellion by the minority Muslims who are fighting for self-rule.
Al Haq said the shelling of the Muslim civilian communities was a violation of a general cease-fire agreement which was severely shaken by clashes in the southern island province of Basilan south of Zamboanga Sibugay on Tuesday that left 19 soldiers and six rebels dead.
The Basilan clashes were the deadliest since 2008, when peace talks bogged down and ignited widespread clashes that killed hundreds and displaced 750,000 people.
President Benigno Aquino III has called his military commanders to a meeting later Friday to discuss why the army suffered so much.
Aquino has refused to order an all-out offensive against the rebels amid a clamor from the military and some officials for tougher government action.
"Are we advocating 'let's go all out war' and that redounds to an improvement in the situation? We should learn, nobody benefits in war," he said Thursday.The rebels have waged a bloody insurgency for self-rule in the southern Mindanao region, the homeland of minority Muslims in the predominantly Roman Catholic Philippines. The conflict has killed more than 120,000 people in nearly four decades.
Associated Press, October 21, 2011
UK: Four Muslim men charged with child sex offenses
Shiraz Afzal, 25, of Mansfield Crescent is charged with conspiracy to rape a child; Omar Mazafer, 21, of Halifax Road is charged with conspiracy to rape a child and Mohammed Suleman Farooq, 22, of Berry Street is charged with conspiracy to rape a child.
All three men have been remanded in custody. A fourth man Waqas Khalid, 18, of Halifax Road, Brierfield is charged with witness intimidation. He will appear at Burnley Magistrates Court this morning (Thursday 20 October).
All four men were arrested after police carried out a series of pre-planned warrants across Brierfield on Tuesday 18 October and Wednesday 19 October.
The action follows an on-going investigation by detectives from the Freedom Team which aims to tackle Child Sexual Exploitation in Pennine Division.Anyone with information or concerns about child sexual exploitation, is urged to contact the Freedom Team on 01706 237397 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
The Asian News, October 20, 2011
Malaysian state considers whipping and jail for "invalid" divorces to reduce high Muslim divorce rate
Divorce rates among Muslims in Malaysia is five-times higher than among non-Muslims.
The government of Kelantan was willing to consider 'heavier penalties' to reduce the divorce rate of Muslims, the chairwoman of the state's women development, family and health committee Wan Ubaidah Omar was quoted as saying by the Star newspaper.
Common grounds for couples seeking divorce include infidelity and the failure of one partner to satisfy the other. Officials did not explain what would constitute invalid reasons for divorce.
State government officials declined to comment on the announcement when contacted, but reiterated that the government was merely open to different ways of keeping Muslim families from falling apart.
The Kelantan government has in recent years been offering free holidays and counselling for troubled couples, in a move to stop the increasing number of divorced couples.The state currently the fourth-highest divorce rate among the country's 16 territories.
M&C, October 19, 2011
US: 5 Foreign Nationals In Custody After Attempted Break-In at Texas Courthouse
At least five foreign nationals are in custody after the attempted break-in at the Bexar County Courthouse in San Antonio, which triggered a bomb scare and FBI terror investigation, a source close to the case tells FoxNews.com.
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing, said the suspects are believed to be of French-Moroccan descent.
FBI agents and a bomb squad were called to the courthouse after three men were found inside the building early Wednesday.
The men, along with two others who were outside in a rented RV, were arrested by San Antonio police. The five suspects are currently being questioned by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.
"We're looking into all aspects of these individuals," FBI spokesman Erik Vasys told FoxNews.com.
Documents found inside the van showed the men, all in their 20s, had traveled extensively to high-level security facilities around the country, according to local media reports. Investigators also told the Associated Press that 90-day visas, maps, cell phones and computers were found inside the vehicle.
The source declined to comment on whether any bomb-making materials were found at the scene, saying only that the suspects' motive is still under investigation.
Police said two of the men climbed a fire escape and entered an unlocked door on the fourth floor of the courthouse at around 2 a.m., KHOU.com reports.
The men allegedly told investigators that they were visiting from out of town and said they were trying to get a tour of the city, according to the station.
Sheriff's department spokesman Louis Antu told the Associated Press that there's no information to indicate that the incident might be affiliated with terrorism. He said the case is being investigated as burglary of a building.
Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff said surveillance video from inside the courthouse showed the men wearing sombreros and waving around a gavel. He said they appear to "just be some guys on a prank."
Bexar County Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz said the men speak little English but are cooperating with a translator's help.
The men, whose names have not yet been released, were taken to a jail holding facility.FoxNews.com's Cristina Corbin and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
Fox News, October 19, 2011
Malaysian police free African sex slaves
The Federal Criminal Investigation Department said in a statement that police freed the women on Friday from four flats in an apartment building on the outskirts of the capital Kuala Lumpur.
The women, aged from 19 to 42, were lured to Malaysia with promises of jobs as maids in homes and hotels but instead were forced into prostitution to pay off their $7,000 travel fees.
The women 'were exploited as sex slaves,' the statement said. 'The victims were threatened physically and mentally if they ran away and report to authorities.'
It added that all of them were brought from Uganda to Malaysia via China.
If they refused sex, they were beaten and raped, a police official in the department said.
'This is the first time we have such a large number of Africans,' said the official, who declined to give his name as he was not authorised to speak publicly about the case.
He added there had been previous cases involving individual African prostitutes but not a syndicate.
Police have also arrested two Ugandan woman believed to be pimps and a Ugandan man believed to be a customer, the department statement said.
The official said police were still investigating how long the ring had been in operation and whether there were more victims.
The penalty for human trafficking in Malaysia is up to 15 years in jail.Although prostitution is illegal in Muslim-majority Malaysia, it is prevalent especially in urban centres.
, October 18, 2011
US Justice Dept: school should have permitted teacher to make Mecca pilgrimage
On September 11, 2008, Safoorah Khan requested three weeks of unpaid leave time to make a hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca. “It’s required once in our lifetime at the earliest opportunity you can get,” she said. After her request was denied, she resigned and made the pilgrimage.
“I’m glad that we settled and I hope this does set a precedent,” she added. “I hope they realize that hajj means a lot to Muslims and there will be more and more people taking the trip. I hope this helps people and their employers to accommodate Muslims and their requests.”In addition to paying Khan $75,000, the school district must provide training on religious accommodations to supervisors and board members.
Catholic Culture, October 18, 2011
Malaysia: Million Muslims to rally against Christians
The Himpunan Sejuta Umat (Himpun), or Gathering of a Million Faithful, is being organised by various right-wing groups such as Perkasa with the backing of both Umno and PAS Youth in what appears to be a coming together of conservative Muslims.
About 1,000 Facebook users have confirmed their attendance so far but should Himpun draw much more to the Shah Alam Stadium this weekend, it could push Umno and PAS to seek relevance among more religious Malays.
With ethnic tensions already rising in the years following the 2008 general election, it could raise already simmering fears of Islamisation among non-Muslims and more liberal Malays.
“There is no other choice but to rally Muslims,” Himpun said in a video promoting the gathering.
Distrust between Muslims and Christians peaked when the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) raided the Damansara Utama Methodist Church (DUMC) in Petaling Jaya on August 3, claiming it was proselytising Muslims.
This came after repeated disputes between church and mosque, such as the legal battle over the the use of the word Allah to refer to the Christian god.
An initial court ruling allowing the Catholic Church to use the term Allah had led to places of worship being firebombed in January last year.
The government also buckled under pressure and ordered the release of Malay-language bibles seized before Sarawakians, half of whom are Christians, voted in the April 16 state polls.
Before the Jais raid, Umno’s Utusan Malaysia and Malay rights lobby Perkasa accused the DAP of conspiring to turn Malaysia into a Christian state.
Although DUMC has denied Jais’ claims, Utusan Malaysia fanned the flames with allegations that Christian groups in Kuala Lumpur and Johor were actively trying to convert Muslims.
Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah appeared to close the case last week when decreeing that although Jais had found evidence of attempts to subvert Muslims, it was “insufficient” for further legal action.
But Himpun has insisted on following through with its plans that aims to “measure the level of unity and spirit of togetherness among Muslims especially towards Christianisation efforts including the August 3 incident.”
“The DUMC case shows how those trying to convert Muslims are becoming more aggressive,” Himpun co-president Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid had said earlier this month.
Recent years have seen communal politics being stirred up after the landmark Election 2008 — the stiffest contest in Malaysian history.
With Barisan Nasional (BN) losing its customary two-thirds hold on Parliament and five state governments, several political leaders have retreated into racial silos to drum up support.
A Merdeka Center poll in June found that only 66 per cent of respondents said ethnic relations were “good” — a 15 per cent decline from the 78 per cent who said so five years ago.The opinion researchers also found that just over a third believed that there was “sincere and friendly ethnic unity,” down from 54 per cent five years ago.
Shannon Teoh, The Malaysian Insider, October 17, 2011
Displaced black Libyans tell of beatings, expulsion at gunpoint
Once residents of Qaddafi’s stronghold of Tawergha, the families now wander a dusty compound ringed with garbage and staffed by a handful of volunteers from the city of Benghazi struggling to prevent the spread of disease as numbers swell.
The group’s eastward flight began last summer, when anti-Qaddafi forces overran Tawergha and vengeance-seeking crowds ransacked it, leaving a ghost town behind.
“They chased us with guns and knives,” said Ibrahim Med Khaled, a 24-year-old taxi driver recently arrived at the former construction site after spending weeks dodging hostile crowds across the country’s west before being captured by armed men.
“They brought me to a house and beat me with electrical cable to make me confess I worked for Qaddafi, even though I told them I never carried a gun,” he said, lifting his shirt to reveal shoulders criss-crossed with fresh wounds from flogging.
Throughout the uprising against Qaddafi’s 42-year rule, his opponents have accused him of hiring fighters from neighboring African countries which led to reports of mistreatment of blacks, including Libyans.
The camp has grown from 400 to nearly 3,000 people in just two weeks since opening, despite disrepair and lack of sufficient sanitation and electricity evidenced by raw sewage pooling behind some of the housing blocks.
Aid workers say overcrowding is forcing hundreds to set up makeshift settlements nearby.
Some of the men at the camp, guarded by troops loyal to the interim government which ousted Qaddafi, still wear camouflage trousers they may have donned last summer in support of Qaddafi.One little girl could be seen eating spilled food off the ground.
Brian Rohan, Reuters, October 17, 2011
Pakistani killer and rapist allowed to stay in Britain
In both cases, the criminals used Article 8 of the Human Rights Act, which entitles everyone to a family life, to overturn Home Secretary Theresa May’s order to deport them at the end of their sentences.
This is the latest blow to the Government’s attempts to remove foreign convicts as courts increasingly use the rules to claim deportation would be against the right to family life.
And it comes after Mrs May revealed her support for reforms that would ensure courts do not always prioritise this right over public safety.
In the first case, Raja Mohammed Anwar Khan climbed behind the wheel of a car after taking heroin and killed another motorist, a father-of-two.
He was jailed for six-and-a-half years in 2008, which was reduced to five years on appeal. He has now overturned a deportation order issued at the end of his sentence after a judge ruled he should be allowed to stay in Britain with his wife and children. Khan had travelled to Pakistan to marry his wife and stayed there for several years before they both returned to Britain, but his father said last week he is now estranged from his family.
Meanwhile, Rohan Winfield raped a young woman after leaving his wife, with whom he has three children, but claimed his broken marriage was evidence he had a family life.
Senior Immigration Judge Andrew Jordan admitted the decision “at first glance appears to be wrong, if not perverse” but he added it was correct for Winfield’s rights to be considered before the safety of society – the reason the Home Office hoped to deport him.
Immigrants who are jailed for more than 12 months face automatic deportation at the end of their sentences but both men appealed against this order.
Earlier this month, Mrs May sparked a row with Justice Secretary Ken Clarke when she referred in her speech to the Conservative Party Conference to the case of a Bolivian man who was allowed to stay because he owned a cat.
The Government has set up a commission to investigate the creation of a UK Bill of Rights. But the Tories risk inflaming tensions with their Coalition partners as senior Liberal Democrats, including Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Energy Secretary Chris Huhne, oppose any changes.
Tory MP Dominic Raab, who is behind a campaign to reform Article 8, said there was “overwhelming public interest” in these latest cases.A Home Office representative said: “It’s unacceptable that the Human Rights Act is being used to prevent removal of foreign criminals and immigration offenders.”
Michael Pickard, Daily Express, October 17, 2011
Pakistan: Pir rapes teenage girl to "cure her of repeated migraines"
According to police officials, Khurarianwala resident Allah Wasaya said that his 14-year-old daughter Khatoon was repeatedly raped by a local pir on the pretext of curing her head aches. Khatoon got pregnant and Allah Wasaya has asked police officials to file a case.
“She was suffering from terrible headaches and I took her to several doctors and hakeem’s but no one was able to help her,” Wasaya said. “I heard about this pir who gave very effective taveez and was a powerful magician,” he told police officials.
Wasaya then contacted Mehmood Qasim, who offered taveez for different ailments.
“Qasim told us that she was possessed by a jinn and said that he had a taveez that could help her,” Wasaya told police. “He told us that the jinn was very powerful and it would take several sessions for him to cure her,” he added.
“I recommended Qasim’s services and I still maintain that he is a great man,” said Wasaya’s neighbour Akram. “The girl was probably having an affair and is trying to blame him,” he said.
Wasaya said that during Khatoon’s treatment, Qasim developed illicit relations with his daughter.
“He raped her repeatedly and told her that if she told anyone then he would release the jinn’s in his power on her,” Wasaya said. “My daughter is now pregnant and everyone in the neighbourhood knows of my shame,” he said.
Khatoon told police officials that Qasim had threatened to cast a spell on her if she told anyone what happened. “He used to send everyone away demanding that the ritual required us to be alone.
He said that if anyone else stayed the jinn would possess them as well,” she told police.
Khatoon said that a couple of weeks ago she experienced abdominal pain and went to the doctor. “She told me that I was four months pregnant and now Qasim has run away,” she said. “I want this man arrested because he raped my daughter and now he has ruined her life,” Wasaya said. Khurarianwala police has registered a case on the complaint of Allah Wasaya under Section 376 of the Pakistan Penal Code and started a search for the arrest of the accused.“These claims are all false. Qasim has cured hundreds of people of their illnesses and he has many loyal followers. Wasaya and his daughter are ungrateful and rather than thanking him for curing the girl of her disease they are blaming him,” said Qasim’s apprentice Kashif Boota. “The girl probably had an affair and got her self pregnant. Now she is trying to blame an honest man who helps cure dozens of people,” he added.
Shamsul Islam, The Express Tribune, October 17, 2011
Muslim mob stones a Nigerian Police headquarter over Juma’at prayers
An eyewitness said some mobile policemen who were travelling along Lafia– Makurdi road, allegedly removed the barricade, which the worshippers used to close the dual carriage way forcefully and thus drew the ire of the worshippers.
The witness said that the mobile policemen might have been travelling to the eastern part of the country. According to the witness, resistance by the worshipers prompted the policemen to throw tear gas and clear the road for other commuters to pass through.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the protest brought activities along Makurdi road to a halt as all shops, banks and the motor park were hurriedly shut. The police public relations officer in the state, ASP Cornelius Ocholi confirmed the incident.
He said shortly after the Friday prayers, the worshippers took to the streets and walked from the mosque to the police headquarters along Makurdi road in protest over the action of the policemen.
Ocholi said the protesters threw stones and bottle into the command in spite of the intervention of the state commissioner of police, Musa Daura who appealed to the protestors against such action.
He said the Police chief had explained to the protesters that the Policemen alleged to have perpetrated the act were not attached to the Nasarawa State command. The commissioner also told the protesters that the command was currently conducting an investigation to ascertain what transpired.NAN reports that the situation caused panic among residents and commuters as most people travelling along the Makurdi-Akwanga road had to seek alternative routes in the town. Meanwhile, normalcy had returned to the area and the command on top of the situation.
Leadership, October 16, 2011
Commentary: How Muslim immigration has transformed European politics
The mass immigration of Muslims into Western Europe over the last four decades or so was a project of elite mainstream politicians, most of them left-wing, who never consulted the electorate on whether they thought this project was a good idea or not. Motivated by a multicultural sensibility (and, in most cases, an invincible ignorance about Islam), these politicians felt compelled not to try to integrate these newcomers, but encouraged them, rather, to preserve their cultural values, however at odds they might be with Western ideas of freedom and equality. For many years there was little organized public resistance to the increasing Islamization of Europe. But then, around a decade ago, things reached a breaking point.
There were several factors. The enthusiastic response to 9/11 by European Muslims who cheered in the streets that day underscored just how foreign many of these people’s values were, and just how hostile they were to the societies in which they lived. The terrorist attacks in Madrid and London, the Danish cartoon riots, the brutal murder of Islam critic Theo van Gogh in Holland, the riots in French and Belgian cities, all raised red flags. European economies suffered increasingly owing to the burden of Muslim families on the welfare state. The growth to adulthood of a generation of European-born Muslims, who had been expected to be fully assimilated, but who, in an extraordinary number of cases, actually proved to be more alienated from mainstream European society than their immigrant parents, was a wake-up call. So were the rising crime rates by these youths, whose religion taught them that unveiled women were legitimate targets for rape and that it was not only acceptable but virtuous to assault Jews, gays, and infidels generally. Furthermore, Europeans became increasingly aware of appalling practices within European Muslim communities, such as forced marriages, female genital mutilation, and honor killings; aware of the vicious anti-Western preaching of these communities’ imams; and aware that these communities, as they grew, were becoming insular no-go zones governed not by Western law but by Sharia.
Yet while ordinary Europeans — many of whose lives were strongly affected by these developments — became more concerned about them, government leaders (whose own lives were largely insulated from these grim realities) dragged their heels, loath to criticize Islam, to make demands of immigrants, or to admit the failure of the multicultural project. The result was a rise in the popularity of organizations, politicians, and parties (some of them newly minted parties) that dared to question the wisdom of existing immigration and integration policies. Some of these new movements had their roots, at least in part, in traditional European fascism and nativism, and were, to say the least, not entirely positive developments; others stood up to Islamization in the name of secular society and individual liberty. Generally speaking, the consequence was a clear rightward shift in European politics. A dramatic example of the way in which concern about European Islam led to a political upheaval was in Denmark, where a sensational 2001 report predicting catastrophic long-term effects of Muslim immigration in that country led voters to replace the socialists who had dominated Danish politics for decades with a conservative coalition led by Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who proceeded (as promised) to institute the most revolutionary immigration and integration reforms in Western Europe. (Alas, in the recent Danish election the socialists were returned to power; they plan to water down Fogh’s reforms.)
Concerns about European Islam played at least some role in the installation of conservative governments in Britain, France, and Germany, where over the last couple of years the heads of government, David Cameron, Nicolas Sarkozy, and Angela Merkel respectively, have pronounced multiculturalism a failure — something one could not have imagined happening just a few years ago. In Norway, concern about Islam was a key factor in the rise of the Progress Party, which at its peak a couple of years ago rivaled the long-dominant Labor Party as the largest of the country’s seven or eight major parties (though in the wake of the July 22 murder spree by an anti-immigrant lunatic its clout has slipped significantly). Concern about Islam has fueled the rise of the far-right, anti-immigrant Vlaams Bloc, now Vlaams Belang, in Belgium and the Sweden Democrats in Sweden, and has helped keep Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia in power. Perhaps most spectacularly, it has also fed the immense popularity of the valiant Dutch politician Geert Wilders, who has placed the curbing of his country’s Islamization at the center of his political platform and whose very considerable influence extends far beyond his tiny country.A major outlier in all this is Spain, where the 2004 Madrid bombings, supposedly motivated by the presence of Spanish troops in Iraq, actually tipped the elections a couple of days later toward the Socialists, who promised to withdraw those troops (and did). But that exception aside, the development across Europe has been striking. A decade ago, America had a conservative president and Western Europe was governed mostly by left-wing parties; today the opposite is the case. Less striking, alas, have been the policy repercussions of this political sea change. While there have been positive reforms in immigration and integration policies in Denmark and the Netherlands, and scattered policy changes elsewhere (the burqa ban in France, the minaret ban in Switzerland), these new governments have fallen short of taking the kind of action that is necessary to ensure the survival of European freedom and equality in the face of an Islamization that is still proceeding apace. The recent news that there are hundreds of would-be terrorists in the U.K. waiting in line to wreak havoc at the forthcoming London Olympics only underscored just how far Europe has to go to protect itself from homegrown jihad — whether of the violent or of the stealth variety.
Bruce Bawer, The Daily Caller, October 16, 2011
Ignored for ten years...abandoned wife's pleas to deport immigrant husband who flouted UK law
The 32-year-old, who has asked to remain anonymous after threats from her husband’s family, spoke out after learning to her horror that he has been told by the Home Office that he can stay in the UK.
She has spent a decade enduring his taunts about how he has taken the immigration system for a ride.
She even took police to the house where the man was hiding – only for him to escape via the back door when bungling officers left it uncovered.
Worse, she says her life is ‘ruined’ because she can never recover from the shame of Sharia law divorce – even though they are still married under British law.
Her protest has been taken up by Deputy Commons Speaker Nigel Evans, who is collecting a dossier of similar cases for Home Secretary Theresa May.
He said: ‘It is scandalous that this lady spent ten years telling the police and the Home Office of her husband’s illegal behaviour – yet they did nothing.
‘It makes our immigration system look like a joke.’
The incident came to light after Ministers said two thirds of people who come to the UK on marriage visas have never set foot in the country before.
The Government is proposing several new curbs, including encouraging people to report suspected illegal immigrants, outlawing forced marriages and making families of would-be immigrants pay a cash bond.
The woman, who contacted The Mail on Sunday, is a respected member of her community in Blackburn, Lancashire.
The daughter of Pakistani immigrants, she was born in the UK, is ‘proud to consider myself English’ and has a full-time professional career.
She said she had been happy to enter an arranged marriage because she considered it ‘part of her culture’.
Aged 21, she went to Pakistan to meet her husband, who was her cousin, and they got married.
She returned to Britain, where she bought and renovated a house while she waited for her husband to join her.
She said: ‘It wasn’t a love marriage, though I believed love would come after we married.
‘But eight weeks after he arrived, he moved out and moved in with an uncle who lived round the corner.
'I was very shocked. We phoned his mother back in Pakistan and she said “just give him a visa and throw him out”.
We couldn’t believe it. They had been planning it all along. I had kept his passport, and he sent people round to get it. I refused.
I knew he would destroy it to remove any evidence of when he had entered the country.
‘Then he started harassing me. He even sent his grandmother to berate me. He pushed his way into my mum and dad’s house and abused them.
I had to call the police to stop him. The Home Office and the UK Borders Agency said they couldn’t do anything until his one-year marriage visa expired.
‘All the time he taunted me over the way he had got into the country.
On one occasion I tracked him down myself. I called the police and they knocked on the front door of the house where he was staying.
He got out via the back and has never been seen again.
‘Recently I was informed he has been given leave to remain here for three years.
He qualifies for benefits even though he has never paid a penny in tax because he works for cash illegally.
Incredibly, he is now using legal aid to divorce me. He wants to marry someone else to increase his chances of staying here for good.
‘I have been humiliated. I obtained a Sharia divorce on the grounds of desertion, but we are still man and wife under English law. My life is ruined. As a Muslim once you are divorced, no one will marry you.
‘I have been telling the authorities for years that he should be sent back, but they have done nothing.
The people who suffer most are genuine immigrants who come here legally because it makes people hostile to them.’
A spokesman for Immigration Minister Damian Green said: ‘For too long the immigration system was allowed to get out of control, decisions were not taken quickly enough and that meant those who should not have been allowed to stay were able to do so.‘The Government is toughening the system to prevent abuse.’
Simon Walters, Mail Online, October 15, 2011
UK: Pedophile Imam found guilty of abusing young girls
Ebrahim Yusuf Kazi, 67, was found guilty of five counts of indecent assault on three girls aged under the age of 13.
The offences took place between 1979 and 1986 at Broad Street Mosque, where Kazi was an Imam before moving to Gloucester.
The victims have been praised by the police for their bravery in coming forward and one victim told the Adver she will come face-to-face with him at court next month to see him sentenced.
Kazi’s crimes were only revealed after one young victim contacted Wiltshire Police.
PC Dawn Simmonds, the investigating officer, said that Kazi had abused his position to commit his crimes.
She said: “Ebrahim Yusuf Kazi was found guilty of five counts of indecent assault on three girls aged under the age of 13.
“The offences took place in the 1980s when Kazi was the Imam at the Broad Street Mosque in Swindon. As an Imam, Kazi was in a position of responsibility and trust, a position which he abused for his own gratification.
“Not only did he subject these children to these despicable acts but he has shown no remorse for his actions, having now also put them through the ordeal of a trial.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the victims who have shown great courage in coming forward. Without their continued assistance, this trial would not have been possible.
“We encourage anyone, child or adult, who has been the victim of a sexual assault to tell someone.
“If you don’t want to report it to police, you can tell a trusted adult who can report it on your behalf, not only so that the offender can be identified but to ensure that you are provided with the appropriate help and support.
“Sexual abuse has an enormous impact on victims and their families. We hope that the outcome of the trial will offer these three women some piece of mind.”Kazi is set to be sentenced at Swindon Crown Court on November 2.
Scott D'Arcy, Swindon Advertiser, October 15, 2011
UK: Man charged with possessing and distributing extremist material to radicalise Muslims
Ahmed Faraz has been charged with 30 counts of possessing and distributing extremist material intended to radicalise Muslims around the world.
Footage of 81 beheadings were found in premises linked to the Sparkhill resident, the prosecution said.
The 32-year-old Islamic studies graduate denies the charges.
Mr Faraz ran Maktabah bookshop and publishers in Birmingham, which produced works that ended up in the hands of terrorists including Mohammed Sidique Khan, the leader of the July 7 bomb plot, Kingston Crown Court heard.
Murders by beheading
Prosecutor Max Hill QC said the DVDs and media files depicted "the murders by beheading of a number of individuals, including the British citizen Ken Bigley, who some will remember".
The 12 jurors were then shown an excerpt of the film, which was found by police on a disc at Poplar Road in Sparkhill, Birmingham, where Mr Faraz, now of Esme Road, was living in 2007.
Mr Bigley, 62, from Liverpool, was taken hostage in Baghdad in September 2004 and beheaded more than three weeks later.
Books, films and media files were found when premises linked to Mr Faraz, all in the Sparkhill area, were searched in 2007 and 2010.
The University of Birmingham graduate is not connected to any specific terrorist plot, Mr Hill said.
He is alleged to have carried out the offences between 2006 and 2010.The trial continues.
BBC News, October 14, 2011
11 Hajj tour operators probed in scam
The Daily Voice can reveal that Imam Yusuf Pandy and 11 Hajj tour operators are now being investigated in connection with the scam.
Up to 1 000 Cape Muslims have lost around R33 million in the Mecca rip-off.
Imam Pandy – from Al Anwar operators – flew to Mecca on Thursday, leaving behind a trail of angry pilgrims and unanswered questions.
It is alleged Al Anwar wrongfully obtained visas from a neighbouring state and sold them off at R3 000 each to unsuspecting South African pilgrims.
These hujjaaj also forked out an average of R30 000 on packages to visit the holy city.
The Daily Voice managed to track down Imam Pandy before he boarded his Saudi-bound plane.
“People are spreading a lot of lies about me and I’m going to sue them. I’m a spiritual leader and not a director,” he claims.
“Go speak to Al Anwar.”
Despite this, the imam earlier publicly apologised on local radio for his role in the scandal.
Several Cape Muslims Thursday night claimed they were robbed of a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Mecca as a result of Al Anwar’s “bad dealings”.
Another Cape Flats tour operator – Faizal Moos from Al-Sabireen – has also been implicated in the Hajj scam.
He refused to respond to queries from this newspaper on Thursday night.
“I will call you at the time when I’m ready to speak to the media,” he told the Daily Voice.
Moos admitted earlier this week that he tried to obtain 500 visas via a contact in Saudi Arabia’s Hajj Ministry, but claimed these were blocked at the last minute.
The scandal has caused widespread dismay among the Cape’s massive Muslim community.
The Daily Voice has also learned no fewer than 11 operators have been linked to the scandal.
All of these are accredited operators from the South African Hajj and Umrah Council (Sahuc).
Sahuc spokesman Shaheen Essop Thursday night refused to give any details about their probe into the matter.
“We are investigating a number of operators, but we cannot identify them at this stage. These operators have violated Sahuc’s code of conduct,” says Essop.
“I’m busy consulting with our legal team to prepare for an internal hearing.”
Essop said Sahuc, the Saudi embassy in Pretoria and the Hajj Ministry are all working together on the investigation.
“We need to determine the extent of the scam and the damage it caused,” he says.
“It is too early to make any speculation. But if the investigation reveals that a member of the Hajj Ministry in the Kingdom is involved, it could have widespread implications.”
However, Imraahn Mukaddam – the spokesperson of the newly-formed group, Friends of the Hujjaj (FotH), last night called for Sahuc to be scrapped.
He confirmed FotH has evidence that reveals 11 operators accredited by Sahuc are part of the visa scam.
Muslim groups on Thursday night called on the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) to intervene and take control of the entire Hajj industry.
However, repeated calls to MJC president, Moulana Igsaan Hendricks, went unanswered on Thursday night.
No one at the MJC has been prepared to go on record since news of the scandal first broke in the Daily Voice earlier this week.
* If you have been a victim, call FotH on 086 111 5008 or email [email protected] or SMS the Daily Voice on 32832.* This article was published on p4 of the Daily Voice
IOL News, October 14, 2011
Three U.S. Muslims convicted in terrorism case
After two days of deliberations, Omar Aly Hassan, 22, Ziyad Yaghi, 21, and Hysen Sherifi, 24, were convicted Thursday of providing material support for terrorists. Yaghi and Sherifi were also convicted of conspiring to kill, kidnap or maim unspecified people overseas; Hassan was acquitted on the conspiracy charge.
Prosecutors in the three-week trial said the men traveled overseas, raised money and trained with weapons to support a jihadist plot to kill perceived enemies of Islam. Defense lawyers said audio and video recordings played in court did not show the defendants discussing or agreeing to any specific attack.
At issue in the case was the extent to which someone in the U.S. can discuss violent jihad and spread radical propaganda in the post-Sept. 11 era, even while committing no violent acts.
Like many other federal terrorism cases since 2001, the prosecution was preemptive. The suspects were arrested as the terrorist plot unfolded — but before they could commit violence.
The government amassed 750 hours of audio and video that included conversations between the defendants and three paid FBI informants; in those conversations, the defendants discussed jihad and their hatred for non-Muslims.
Friends and family members who attended parts of the trial complained of selective prosecution of Muslims. Hassan's father, Aly Hassan, said after the verdict that the trial had been "a long nightmare."
"Every single witness came out and said they never conspired with my son," Hassan said. "Conspiracy is a very elastic word."
Outside the courtroom, Sherifi's mother shouted, "Racist vultures!"
Mauri Saalakhan, director of an Islamic organization called the Peace Thru Justice Foundation in Silver Spring, Md., who attended parts of the trial, said the convicted men were victims of guilt by association. He called the undercover informants "provocateurs" who entrapped them.
Eight men were indicted in the case in 2009. The accused ringleader, U.S.-born Daniel Boyd, a Muslim convert, testified for the government in a plea deal. So did his sons, Daniel Boyd, 24, and Zakariya Boyd, 21. They are to be sentenced later.
A trial for the seventh defendant, Anes Subasic, has not been scheduled. The eighth defendant, Jude Kenan Mohammad, is a fugitive.
Prosecutors named no targeted victims. Nor did they specify places, times or dates of attacks, except for a potential attack on the Marine base in Quantico. The elder Daniel Boyd had visited the base, and he and Sherifi had discussed its vulnerability to an attack on Marines and their families.
Sherifi was also convicted of conspiring to kill members of the U.S. military and weapons violations.
In court, prosecutors displayed a stockpile of nearly two dozen guns and 27,000 rounds of ammunition seized from a bunker under Daniel Boyd's home; they also played tapes of the defendants praising jihadist publications.
Defense lawyers said the defendants were foolish young men who made "stupid and offensive comments but committed no crimes.
Hassan and Yaghi are U.S. citizens. Sherifi, a Kosovo native, is a legal permanent U.S. resident. All lived in the Raleigh, N.C., area.Sentencing is scheduled to take place in 90 days.
David Zucchino, Los Angeles Times, October 13, 2011
Bashir says Sudan will adopt entirely Islamic constitution
Bashir had said in December that Sudan would adopt an Islamic constitution if Juba seceded but many southerners had hoped he would not deliver on this. His comments will add to uncertainty for more than a million southerners who still live in the north and are now treated legally as foreigners. Khartoum has given them until spring to leave or obtain the legal right to stay, a complicated process.
“Ninety eight percent of the people are Muslims and the new constitution will reflect this. The official religion will be Islam and Islamic law the main source (of the constitution),” Bashir told students in Khartoum in a speech. “We call it a Muslim state,” said Bashir, wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes in Dafur.The 2005 peace deal set up an interim constitution which limited Islamic law to the north and recognised “the cultural and social diversity of the Sudanese people”. Many southerners say they feel no longer welcome in the north since the split. They have lost government jobs and now need work and residency permits to stay in the north.
Khalid Abdelaziz, Reuters, October 13, 2011
US: Atheist "Zombie Muhammad" attacked by Muslim during Halloween parade
According to reports, the Parading Atheists of Central Pennsylvania (PACP) were marching in a Halloween parade in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania,when a Muslim stormed out of the hometown crowd to assault one of the marching atheists who happened to be wearing a Zombie Muhammad costume.
The atheist in the Zombie Muhammad costume was proclaiming that he was the Prophet Muhammad, risen from the dead. Apparently the words and costume offended a Muslim man, who came out of the audience and began to follow and harass the atheist dressed as Zombie Muhammad before actually choking the atheist.
Subsequently, a police report was filed, and charges in the matter are pending.
The victim posted a video of the incident to YouTube. In the video description the victim writes:
- Oct 11 2011 in the Machanicsburg City Parade I was attacked by a violent muslim IN AMERICA! This is proof that muslims want Shria Law in America. He attacks me to pull my beard off so he could identify me and chokes me.
- I understand many will say I deserved it, but no one has the right to abridge my freedom of speech and violence is never the answer to freedom of speech. Islam is a religion of Peace? not the case here.
Some atheists and others are questioning the wisdom of marching in a parade and purposefully offending a religious group. Some question the public relations value of such activity.
It does seem fair to say that the intention of the atheists was to poke fun at and offend Muslims. To be fair, there was also a “Zombie Pope” marching in the Halloween parade while claiming to be on the look out for little boys. No doubt, many Catholics found a pedophile Zombie Pope offensive as well.Yet regardless of whether or not one is offensive in speech, there is no justification for violent assault in order to silence that speech. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is there not only to guarantee freedom of speech for those we agree with, but more importantly, it is there to guarantee the freedom of speech for those who we find particularly obnoxious and offensive.
Michael Stone, Humanist Examiner, October 12, 2011
Nobel Peace panel stands behind Muslim Brotherhood winner
The chairman of the Nobel Peace Prize committee has dismissed concerns that one of this year’s three recipients, Tawakkul Karman of Yemen, represents a party directly linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.
Thorbojern Jagland told reporters in Oslo this weekend that he disagrees with the “perception” widespread in the West that the Brotherhood is a threat to democracy.
“There are many signals that that kind of movement can be an important part of the solution,” he said. “We have included the Arab Spring in this prize, but we have put it in a particular context.
“Namely, if one fails to include the women in the revolution and the new democracies, there will be no democracy.”
Karman, 32 and a mother of three, is a leading member of Islah (Reform), Yemen’s main opposition movement. The movement is split into three wings: a tribal confederacy led by the head of the powerful Al- Ahmar tribe; a political movement that operates under the Muslim Brotherhood banner; and a religious branch linked to the worldwide Salafi movement.
The last of these is led by Abdul Majeed al-Zindani, a Sunni religious scholar and former adviser to Osama bin Laden who is considered a terrorist by the US.
In 2003, the last time the country held legislative elections, the Islah party took 23 percent of the vote. Karman’s selection represents the first time a Muslim Brotherhood member has been singled out for the award.
Liberia’s Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee also shared in this year’s prize, the winners of which were announced Friday.
Following the announcement, Ikhwanweb, the official Muslim Brotherhood website, posted on its Twitter feed: “Yemeni Muslim Brotherhood member Tawakkul Karman wins Nobel Peace Prize.”
In 2004, shortly after joining Islah, Karman appeared in public for the first time without a niqab, or face-covering veil, which she said is not dictated by the strictures of Islam.The following year she founded the group “Women Journalists Without Chains,” which pushes for greater freedom of expression and female integration in Yemen, a deeply-conservative country and the Arab world’s poorest, where twothirds of women are illiterate.
Oren Kessler, Jerusalem Post, October 12, 2011
Funeral Service Held for the Copts Killed, Muslims Throw Molotov Cocktails at Mourners
Some interpreted this demand, which the church has made only three times in its long history, as a way to implore "God's help for the Copts," commented Coptic activist and writer Nader Shoukry.
In Cairo, thousands of Copts marched to attend the funeral of the victims of what they termed the "October 9 Military Massacre." They congregated in front of the Coptic hospital where most of the dead and injured were transported, and which was attacked the night before by Muslims, who hurled bricks and Molotov Cocktails at the victims' families.
A funeral service presided by Pope Shenouda III was held for the Copts killed in Maspero, at 11 AM at St. Mark's Cathedral in Abbasiya, Cairo, and was attended by over 10,000 Copts. The funeral was for five Copts only, as the rest of the victims are awaiting for autopsies, on the advice of Coptic lawyers. "This is to safeguard the rights of the dead," said attorney Dr. Ehab Ramzy, "otherwise the families could lose their case. We need proof."
After the funeral, while still inside the Cathedral, the enraged Copts chanted "down with the junta rule and down with Tantawi."
According to priests and Coptic lawyers who were present at the Coptic Hospital, where the victims were brought, the death certificates issued by the authorities were misleading and did not reflect the true cause of death, which might let the assailants get away with the crime. Certificates showed the cause of death as being "stab wounds" and "cardiac arrest caused by fear."
The families insisted on having the autopsies done, which were carried out on 17 bodies lying in the Coptic hospital. Independent doctors observed those who came from the Public Morgue to carry out the autopsies.
Dr. Maged Lewis, a director at the Forensic Medicine Institute, commented that he had never seen corpses in this deplorable state before. "Bodies were mashed and bones were crushed; many had fractures and laceration of the intestines; while in others, death was caused by gun shots."
Eyewitnesses reported the army disposed of nine bodies by throwing them in the Nile. Two bodies remain unidentified, making the number of killed uncertain.
After midnight today, friends and relatives of the dead carried the 17 caskets from the Coptic hospital to St. Mark's Cathedral for the second funeral service. Near Ghamra bridge, bricks were hurled at the cortege, but the procession carried on to the Cathedral.
The caskets were taken to St. Mary's Church in "October 6" district, where they laid beside the 12 Copts who died in Embaba, defending their Church against Salafist attacks on May 7, 2011 (AINA 5-8-2011).
On their way back after the burial the mourners were attacked by armed thugs who blocked the way and hurled Molotov cocktails at them; gun shots were heard. They sought shelter and called the army emergency phone line for help, they waited until the morning but no one came.The Coptic Church considers people who lost their lives on account of being Christian as "martyrs" and they will be buried together in a collective grave.
Mary Abdelmassih, AINA, October 12, 2011
That's despite his lawyer's plea that publication could potentially mark the young Muslim as having links to international terrorism.
Ifraaz Joseph, 18, pleaded not guilty to one charge of threatening to harm people or property when he appeared in Manukau District Court this morning.
Defence lawyer Giles Harvey applied for interim suppression to be continued, arguing that his client's Muslim background combined with what was being alleged could create a public backlash and put him and his family at risk.
There was the potential people could wrongly perceive links with international terrorism, he said.
Mr Harvey also argued that Joseph's name was very similar to other male members of his family and publication could wrongly implicate them in the alleged crime.
Furthermore, "publication of his name might cause public stigma against the defendant regardless of whether he is acquitted or not.
Judge Heather Simpson said she took into account Joseph's young age: "he's still at school and he should be protected, to some extent, from the foolishness of his own actions.
However, she decided the seriousness of the charge, and the genuine public interest "in matters of this kind, outweighed the potential harm publication could have on Joseph and his family.
She ordered that the defendant be referred to by his middle name, Ifraaz, to avoid possible confusion with other family members.
Mr Harvey also asked for a variation of Joseph's bail conditions to allow him limited access to the internet to enable him to finish school assignments.
Judge Simpson postponed hearing this application until October 19 when further written material could be made available.
There will also be a case review hearing on November 22.
Joseph allegedly intended to cause significant disruption to the Government by suggesting there would be explosions in municipal buildings, court documents show.
The video, which was posted onto YouTube on September 6, also said Government and media websites would be hacked.
The threats were allegedly part of a protest against the new Copyright (Infringing File Sharing) Amendment Act that came into effect earlier this month, police said.
Acting Detective Inspector Pete Jones of the Counties Manukau CIB said after the arrest that police took such threats very seriously.
Multiple areas of the police force worked together closely on the investigation, he said.
"Counties Manukau CIB and Wellington District were able to draw on the expertise of the National Cyber Crime Centre (NC3) and the Electronic Crime Laboratory to help us locate this individual.He said the investigation showed police could trace individuals who made serious threats on the internet.
Matthew Theunissen, New Zealand Herald, October 12, 2011
Saudi Arabia: Family of 36 stricken by dad’s sadistic savagery
One son has already lost a hand and another was jailed for six months.
The family, consisting of three wives and 33 sons and daughters, are crammed in a few rooms of the first level of a three-floor villa without any beds or mattresses. The second floor must remain empty and the third must be used to shelter sheep, according to the father’s orders.
One bathroom has been cordoned off to be used as a torture cell, where steel bars are tied to the ceiling for one purpose—hanging by hands for days as a punishment of children who disobey their father.
The family lives in the southern mountainous town of Abha near the border with Yemen and the father is so cruel that he stopped all types of support for them while intensifying his repressive measures. His cruelty is also so strong that he does not know the names of most of his children.
“My family has been deprived from the simplest requirements of a decent life…although his financial condition is good, he no longer supports us and is using all sorts of physical and psychological torture against us,” his eldest son, Musfir, said, quoted by the Saudi Arabic language daily Alwatan.
“Since I was born and started to realize things, I don’t remember anything at home except beating, locking up, deprivation of food and continuous insults… we are forced to live on the ground floor without mattresses, blankets and beds……the rooms are almost empty except for insects.”
Musfir said he and most of his brothers and sisters have been hanged by their hands in the toilet-turned-prison for several days.
“One little brother was kept there for a long time until blood started to come out of this mouth…but he had no mercy on him,” he said.
“Another brother at our deserted house in another town when fire erupted…he suffered from severe burns but my father just left him there…I had to rush and take him to the hospital where he was kept for three years….my father never visited him in the hospital…another brother had his hand amputated at the hospital due to severe injuries caused by hanging in the toilet.”
Musfir said his father had also forced his second eldest son to leave school and work as a guard at that school so he can take his salary.
“Most of us have been either to hospital or psychiatry centres for treatment because of my father’s continuous torture and beatings…I myself was jailed for six months after he clamed that I stole his car…when I was out, I was allowed to return to my job in the military but in a lower rank and less money.”
Musfir said the family had complained their father to the department of social affairs in the southern province of Asir but that no action has been taken. He said they then reported him to the Human Rights Commission.
The paper quoted the Commission’s director in Asir, Hadi Al Yami, as saying a committee would visit the family soon to verify its complaint against the father.“We will prepare a report once we complete the visit and talk to the family members…we will then follow up their case with the competent authorities in the province…in case all these offences are verified, then the Commission will recommend to the authorities to strip that father from his family custody.”
Emirates 24/7, October 11, 2011
Saudi Arabia: Colombian footballer arrested over tattoo
The tattoo on his left shoulder led to the insults of some local Muslims, and the incident attracted the attention of the so-called "police for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice," who stopped the couple. According to local newspapers, the agents "put the player and his wife in a car and took them to the police station." Soon after, they contacted the leaders of the football club. "Pino and his wife were handed over to them" .
Immediately afterwards the football club released a statement, attributed to the player, where Juan Pablo Pino expressed his "deep sadness" over the incident and certified that it was not his intention to violate the laws of the country. The communiqué adds that the player was in the mall "to buy Muslim clothes for his wife, so that she can go out in public dressed in a respectful manner." The player's wife, however, according to a report in the newspaper "As-Sharq" is distressed, and she and her husband would want them to leave Saudi Arabia. The newspaper said that the club has asked the coach, the Argentine Gustavo Costas, and Juan Pablo Pino, trying to convince her to change her mind.In September El Comercio, a newspaper in Lima, published an interview with Gustavo Costas about his new life (previously he coached the team Alianza Lim). In Lima he made the sign of the cross before every game, and wore a rosary around his neck. "Now I can not do this in public, I do it in the locker room. If I made the sign of the cross, they would kill me, stone me, "said Costas. Last year, the Romanian player Mirel Radoi, from the club Al-Hilal (the crescent) kissed the cross tattoo on his arm after scoring a goal. The episode scandalised Muslims.
AsiaNews, October 11, 2011
Egypt state television admits to making up news over soldiers’ deaths
State TV, also known as Maspero, is under fire from rights activists for falsely reporting that the Coptic protesters attacked the military forces with weapons, which resulted in the death of at least three soldiers and the called on the Egyptian people to take to the street to help protect the armed forces.
The news, when reported on Sunday evening, agitated many Muslims, who took up arms and went to the streets of downtown, clashing with protesters, both Muslims and Coptic Christians, injuring dozens in the worst sectarian violence since the fall of ousted President Hosni Muabrak’s regime.
State TV also reported that the protesters were armed and initiated the violence that killed the soldiers, which escalated the bloodshed late on Sunday.
The Copts who were marching and demanding justice for the burning of a house of worship in southern Egypt last week, were shot at by the military upon their arrival at the state TV building by the military.
Videos posted online show armored vehicles running over people, killing and injuring scores of them. Eyewitnesses told Bikyamasr.com at the protest that Copts were “not armed” and the army was “not provoked to attack.”International media outlets largely reported on Sunday night Cairo what state television was reporting.
Manar Ammar, Bikya Masr, October 10, 2011
Outrage over Egyptian state TV's misinformation and anti-Coptic incitement
At least 21 protesters, mainly Copts, were killed as army tanks ran over several young people and police shot rubber, and live bullets according to multiple eye witnesses, into the crowd.
The army said that three military police soldiers were also killed.
Meanwhile, the Egyptian ministry of health confirmed that at least 329 were injured by the end of the evening.
A number of critics say that Egyptian state television not only failed to calm matters, but actually played a role in aggravating an already tense situation.
In an unprecedented move, broadcasters on state television at one point called on the Egyptian public to head to Maspero en masse to defend Egyptian soldiers from what they described as "angry Christian protesters".
Indeed as the night unravelled, vigilante mobs attacked demonstrators fleeing police bullets and tear gas, using machettes, swords and cudgels.
Call-ins to state TV from viewers, meanwhile, supported the state’s official version of events and backed up anchor's frantic pleas.
"Armed Christians clashed with and killed military police," one call-in viewer claimed.
State television also aired footage of injured military police officers, but failed to carry images of flattened corpses of killed demonstrators which were circulating virally over internet sites.
Minister of Information Osama Heikal later attributed claims made on state television that Copts were attacking the army to “emotional stress” on the part of the news anchors.
"Announcers reported that Christian protesters had attacked the army only because they were under emotional stress,” Heikal stated. He went on to urge Egyptian media – both government and private – to exercise caution when broadcasting news.
But this didn’t stop some political activists and journalists from calling for Heikal’s resignation.
Prominent Egyptian publisher Hisham Kassem suggested that lawyers lodge an official complaint against Heikal and state television broadcasters. Kassem pointed to newscasts aired Sunday night as evidence that state media was contributing to sectarian strife.
Former member of parliament Gamal Zahran, for his part, called for an investigation into “state television’s role in encouraging sectarian division." Zahran, too, called for Heikal’s resignation.
At a joint emergency press conference held by potential presidential candidates and several parties Monday, Mohamed Abu El-Ghar, president of the recently-licensed Social Democratic Party, also blasted the official media, which he described as “hypocritical.”
Coverage of Sunday’s clashes by state media also came in for criticism by none other than state television employees.
On his Twitter account, state television news anchor Mahmoud Youssef insisted that he had not been responsible for official coverage of events.
Dina Rasmy, a newscaster on state television’s Channel Two, declared in a statement posted on Facebook on Monday that she was “ashamed” of working for state media, which, she said, "had proven itself to be a slave for whoever rules Egypt."
Rasmy went on to say that national television was effectively encouraging “civil war” by calling on Egyptian citizens to go to Maspero to support the army against what it called "Christian aggressors."
Notably, live broadcasts by the privately-owned 25 Channel were cut after military police stormed its headquarters, located in the Maspero district and overlooking the site of the bloody battle, three different times between 7pm and 10pm.
The army said that they were searching for hiding protesters, while others postulate that they were seeking to confiscate tapes with video footage showing armoured vehicles ploughing into unarmed demonstrators.
Until now, the channel's management has not issued an official statement on the incident.
The 25 Channel was not the only news network with offices in Maspero to be stormed by military police. The offices of the US-based Al-Hurra news channel were also stormed while covering Sunday’s events.
One Al-Hurra reporter said later that the network had been forced to halt its coverage of the clashes "for security reasons."Egyptian Copts have long complained of biased media coverage from state owned TV and printed press on issues relating to their years-old demands for equal citizenship rights in Egypt.
Zeinab El Gundy, Ahram Online, October 10, 2011
Egyptian Army, Police slaughter 35 Peaceful Coptic Protestors
There were discrepancies between reports from the official State-owned TV and independent TV stations. Al-Hayat confirmed that army armored vehicles went into Maspero "in a strange way" and ran over the protesters. A video clip of the armored vehicles running amok through the 150,000 protesters was shown on Al-Arabia TV. Egyptian State-run TV said that Coptic protesters killed 3 soldiers and injured 20. They gave no numbers for the fallen or injured Copts. They also said that the Copts had weapons. This was refuted by Coptic priests and activists. Nader Shoukry, Coptic activist and journalist, said "We only had wooden crosses."
"Today occurred a massacre of the Copts," said Coptic priest, Father Filopateer Gamil in a telephone conversation with CTV Coptic Channel. "I was an eyewitness to all what happened."
According to witnesses, the army forces were waiting for the Copic rally to arrive at Maspero, near the state television building. "They arranged a trap for us," said Father Filopateer. "As soon as we arrived they surrounded us and started shooting live ammunition randomly at us. Then the armored vehicles arrived and ran over protesters."
Father Filopateer said he saw army police and affiliated thugs torching police cars, to later blame it on the Copts. He believes that the assault on the Copt was preplanned.
Copts announced a few days ago that they would stage a rally to protest the torching of the church in the village of Elmarinab in Edfu, Aswan (AINA 10-1-2011), as well as the brutal attack on the Coptic rally in Maspiro on October 4 (AINA 10-9-2011). Rallies were to be staged in Cairo, Aswan, Minya, Beni-Suef, Assiut, Suez and Alexandria.
"When we announced this peaceful rally we made it understood that it will be from 5-8pm and no sit-in and no blocking of traffic," said Ihab Aziz, Coptic-American activist, who was one of the organizers.
Aziz said that the procession started today at the Christian populated district of Shubra and went to Maspero, in front of the TV building, on the river Nile. On their way, some Muslims fired live ammunition over their heads to terrorize them and some bricks were hurled at them. By the time they arrived to Maspero there were nearly 150,000 protesters. "The army and police were waiting for us about 200 meters away from the Maspero TV building," said Aziz. "They started firing at us before two army armored vehicles came at great speed and drove into the crowds, going backwards and forwards, mowing people under their wheels." He said he saw at least 20 dead Copts around him.
"The most horrible scene was when one of the vehicles ran over a Copt's head, causing his brain to explode and blood was all over the place," recalled Aziz. he held out his hand, showing two bullets in his palm. "We got a clear message today that we are no first class citizens."
The same description of events was confirmed by Nader Shoukry. He said that when the Copts were trapped by the army forces, some threw themselves in the Nile and some just fainted seeing other people being run-over in front of their eyes. Copts ran to hide in the neighboring buildings, but the police dragged them out and assaulted them.
Dr. Naguib Gabriel, who was at the procession, was shot in the leg.
Michael Munier, head of El Hayat (Life) Party, said that what happened to the Copts today was a massacre. He asked why do the authorities kill the Copts who were protesting peacefully for their rights, while at the same time when Salafists blocked the trains in Qena for 10 days protesting against a Copt being nominated for governor of Qena, no one touched them?
"People are being prosecuted, including former President Mubarak, in courts presently because they killed demonstrators on January 28. Now the military police is doing the same to the Copts," said Shoukry.A curfew has been announced tonight in several Cairo streets.
Mary Abdelmassih, AINA, October 10, 2011
Hundreds of Kenyan Muslims Riot Over Hotel Shower Graffiti
They then moved to Petlizz bar where they overturned chairs and smashed glasses and beer bottles while calling for the closure of the recreational facility and threatening to set the building ablaze. Area Officer Commanding Station Francis Tumbo was forced to intervene and closed two bars on the premises to ease the tension. Security personnel had a hard time controlling the youths and it took the intervention of councillors, imams and the police to cool them down.
However, they camped outside the building demanding the arrest of the girl, Rahima, they claim wrote on the wall. "This is very wrong. How can a person write the name of Allah at a place where people go naked to take a bath and do other evil things? We want action to be taken against the suspect and we shall not move until she is arrested," a protester shouted outside the bar.The protestors remained at the hotel for more than four hours chanting the Takhbir solidarity slogan and the Muslim call to mass action while condemning the act. Security personnel from the police and Kenya Army kept vigil and monitored the building. Mohamed Abdulkhadir from the Coast Interfaith Council of Clerics who was present at the protests condemened the act saying it could trigger chaos because it had offended the Islamic faith.
Nairobi Star/All Africa Global Media, October 10, 2011
Pakistan: Muslims publicly execute pedophile and victim... for adultery
The sources said that one Ihsan hailing from Quetta was machine operator in a local loom factory and had allegedly molested a boy from the nearby area. The boy was unidentified.
The sources said that Ihsan while having sex with the boy made a video of the act with his cellphone camera and circulated it among his friends. The images reportedly reached into the hands of militants.
According to the sources, a group of militants seized the man and the boy in Malik Garhi on Friday and shifted them to an unidentified location where they were physically tortured and investigated. The militants brought the accused to Malik Garhi around noon on Saturday where in presence of a crowd they pushed them down from the banks of River Bara.
Subsequently the militants went down and shot dead the accused. Ihsan and the boy were already seriously injured after falling from the 10 meters high bank of the river.Talking to this scribe, an officer of the local political administration confirmed the death of two persons at the hands of the militants. He said it was a case of rape involving a man from Quetta and a local boy. The family members of the boy rejected the allegations and said that it was a case of kidnapping for ransom and when the militant group was not paid the amount in time they killed the captives. Talking to The News, Lashkar-e-Islam Commander Sabeel Khan said that any one found involved in illicit relations would be dealt with in the same way. “Ameer Mangal Bagh has zero tolerance for immoral sexual acts,” Sabeel Khan stressed.
The News International, October 9, 2011
Dress modestly: Masked men enter Pakistani girls’ school, thrash students
The gang of miscreants also warned the inmates at the MC Model Girls High School in Satellite Town to “dress modestly and wear hijabs” or face the music, eyewitnesses said.
Fear gripped the area following the attack and only 25 of the 400 students studying in the college were present on Saturday. The school employs 30 female teachers.
Attendance in other educational institutions also remained low. After hearing about the attack, all schools in the city shut down, an official of the Rawalpindi District Administration (RDA) told The Express Tribune.
A student of the girls’ school managed to inform the administration of the nearby boys’ high school of the attack. “[However,] the armed gang was so powerful that we could not rescue our teachers and colleagues over there,” Noail Javed, a grade 10 student, said.
In-charge of MC High Schools in Rawalpindi issued a notification to the heads of all girls’ schools to take pre-emptive measures to avoid such incidents in future. According to the notification, a gang comprising 60 to 70 miscreants entered into the school from a gate that was “strangely open”.
All the MC school heads were assigned the responsibility of protecting the students by the notification. A school headmistress wishing not to be named said, “How is it possible for us to protect the students from such elements. The city administration should review its security plan.”
The notification also suggested that the heads should not inform the students about the situation, so that they are not alarmed into skipping school. “Police is investigating the matter,” the notification said. Following the notification, the heads of the schools also shared the numbers of relevant police stations with the teachers in case of any untoward situation in future.
Asjad Ali, a student of class 9 at the nearby boys’ high school, said that his younger brother Awais, a student of grade 5, was also among those who were brutally beaten by the miscreants with iron rods. “The police did not come,” he said.
A police official of the New Town Police Station, asking for anonymity, told The Express Tribune, “We were under strict instructions to do nothing.”District Education Officer Qazi Zahoor and Rawalpindi Commissioner Zahid Saeed were not immediately available for comments.
Azam Khan, The Express Tribune, October 9, 2011
Islamic cleric tricks women with messages from Allah in order to sleep with them
According to reports, the Alfa, AbdulRaheem Rahman Sina, had lured a young married lady from a shop where she was serving as an apprentice fashion designer on Monday, October 4, 2011 under the pretence that he had a message for her from God and would want to pray for her. After taking her to his house, he had reportedly offered her a concoction. The after-effect of the drink however was that the lady became weak and lost strength and every sense of reasoning.
It was at that point that the Alfa attempted to have sex with his victim but she summoned strength and left the house. She could not make it back to her shop or home however, as she collapsed on the way, with her baby on her back. Passersby who noticed her where she laid had quickly referred her relations to where she was when they heard that the family members were already searching for her. She was picked up and rushed to a private hospital at Wakajaiye area where she was still undergoing treatment as at Wednesday October 5
Initial attempts to apprehend the fake cleric failed as he reportedly escaped through the backyard of his residence, but was eventually tricked out of his hiding and was taken to the hospital to restore the lady’s senses. However, the tumultous crowd outside the hospital went haywire as soon as they sighted him, asking for his head, which made policemen from Monatan Division to seek reinforcement from Agodi Area Command. It was then that the police were able to disperse the crowd and take the suspect to the Area Command for interrogation.
Speaking with Sunday Tribune on her hospital bed, Opeyemi Bakare, a-22-year old lady who is married with one child said she was in her shop “when the Alfa called me out and said he had a message for me. He then said I should pick my child and follow him home, adding that I should buy salt which would be used for the prayers.
“I didn’t know the force that came over me but I did not refuse his instruction. I just told others in the shop that I was going out. When we got to a house, he brought out a cup for me with concoction in it. I could not refuse it either but the moment I drank it, I did not know what happened to my system as I could not get myself straight again. The Alfa then told me that I must look for a holy man to have sexual intercourse with me.
“That was the point at which I became a little bit conscious of myself and I pushed him off. I picked up my child and left the house but I didn’t know what happened to me afterwards until I became fully conscious the following day in the hospital, though very weak. He was brought to the hospital to come and do whatever he could do to set me free. He recited some quranic verses but said other things he would use were at home. However, he was not allowed to go home because of the fear that he could disappear”.
The suspect, in an interview with Sunday Tribune, confirmed what the lady said, admitting that his action was unIslamic as he was just looking for means to satisfy his sexual urge. He also revealed that that would not be his first attempt as he had succeeded in sleeping with some women in Kwara State through that trick.
Giving an insight into his background and his encounter with Opeyemi, Abdul Raheem said “ I don’t know my exact age because I had no formal education. While my father was still alive, I had a wife who bore two children for me but one of them is dead, leaving me with one child. I live in my father’s house at Oki area of Monatan with my uncle.
I was sent to quranic school by my father when I was about nine years old but I did not pursue Western education. I went into Islamic preaching fully and had been surviving on gifts from the people I pray for and give messages to.
On Monday October 3, I went to a friend of mine called Wasiu and he was one of those I used to pray for. As I left his place, I passed by Opeyemi’s shop. I had earlier passed by the shop and I greeted them while I was going. On my way back, I called Opeyemi and told her I had a message for her. I warned her to desist from talking about herself among her friends so that she would not be gotten cheaply.
“I asked her if she could follow me home and she agreed. She said she wanted to tell those in the next shop and also pick her baby. She followed me and on the way, I asked her to buy salt and she said she would buy it when we get to my place. When we got there, I called a boy, Rilwan, who was undergoing tutelage in quran under me and she gave him the money to go and buy the salt.
“I told her there was need to give her a drink which I also used to drink. I called it drink of mercy. It is made from herbs put in local gin and mixed with four tins of milk. When she finished drinking, I lied to her that she would have to look for a holy man to have sex with her. At that point, I had removed my trousers to have sex with her but as I moved near her, she pleaded with me to please allow to go home and come back because her bag was still in the shop. It was not quite five minutes after she left that I received a call from a man living close to my house that something had happened to the boy I sent on an errand to bring some people to my house. I didn’t go there myself but sent my uncle to go and check what happened to him. He came back to tell me that it was my attention that was needed as the people holding Rilwan said that they were looking for a young woman who went away with me.
“I told him the woman had left and I also opened up to him on what transpired between me and the lady. He castigated me over my action, saying that I should have looked for a wife to marry instead of what I planned to do with her. He told me the issue had turned into a big uproar and that the people were bringing the police. That was how I scaled the fence from the backyard and ran away.
“I ran to Adegbayi-Alakia area but I received a call on Tuesday from a woman who told me that I had once given her a message from God and she was ready to go through the spiritual process I prescribed for her. Unknown to me however, she was a bait used to get me out of my hiding and I described the place I was for her. As she came and we were discussing, many area boys came and they started beating me.
“I was taken to the hospital where the lady was being treated but as soon she saw me she started shaking again. I was taken to the police station.”
Abdulraheem also confessed that it would not be his first time of doing this as he used the same trick to sleep with three women in Kwara. “I admit that I am not a true Islamic cleric and what I did is against Islamic doctrines. I was only using tricks to sleep with women. Sunday Tribune learnt that the herbs in the concoction was marijuana.
The Police Public Relations Officer in Oyo State, ASP Femi Okanlawon confirmed the story to Sunday Tribune, saying that two other suspects, the Alfa’s uncle, Gafari Raji (48) and one AbdulJeleel Alade (20) who prepared the concoction for him, had been arrested along with the Alfa. He added that the trio were charged to Chief Magistrate Court at Ejioku on Thursday on a six-count charge of attempted rape, unlawful administration of poison to endanger human life, conduct likely to cause breach of peace by destroying concoction, aiding and abetting, conspiracy and stealing.While the suspects were granted bail on three of the six-count charge, the Chief Magistrate ordered them to be remanded in prison custody based on the charges of conspiracy, attempted rape and endangering of life through the administration of poisonous substance. The case had been adjourned to November 3 for hearing.
Oluwatoyin Malik, Sunday Tribune, October 9, 2011
Tunisia Islamists storm university over veil ban
Tunisia votes on October 23 in the first election since a revolution that inspired the "Arab Spring" uprisings. The vote has pitted Islamists against secular Tunisians who say their liberal values are under threat.
"The General Secretary of the university was attacked this morning with extreme violence by a group of religious extremists," said Moncef Abdul Jalil, a faculty head at the university of Sousse, about 150 km (93 miles) south of the Tunisian capital.
About 200 people protested outside the faculty, and then stormed the building carrying banners demanding students' right to wear a veil, Abdul Jalil was quoted as saying by Tunisia's official TAP news agency.
"This serious incident caused a state of terror and panic in the ranks of college students and professors," he said.
Witnesses told Reuters that, after the incident, a large security force contingent surrounded the faculty building to prevent any further attacks.
The clashes in Sousse provoked a storm of anger among secularists on social networking website Facebook.
Following online calls for a counter-protest, about 200 women gathered in El-Menzah, a northern suburb of the capital, to protest against religious violence, witnesses said.
A former French colony, Tunisia has a long history of secularism and liberal attitudes.
That has been challenged since autocratic president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was swept from power in January, and conservative Muslims were free to express their views and adopt the outward trappings of their beliefs.
Under Ben Ali rule, thousands of people who were suspected of membership of an Islamist political group or who followed strict interpretations of Islam were arrested.
The full-face veil -- known as the niqab -- is rarely seen on Tunisia's streets but it has been one of the subjects of debate between Islamists and secularists.
The Education Ministry decided to ban students from wearing the niqab at the start of the academic year.
The Islamist Ennahda party is expected to win the biggest share of the vote on October 23, when Tunisians are to choose an assembly which will draft a new constitution.Ennahda leader Rachid Ghannouchi told Reuters in an interview his party would uphold women's rights and not try to impose strict Muslim values on society.
Tarek Amara, Reuters, October 8, 2011
US: Muslim accuses Wisconsin man of criticizing Islam, attacks him with tire iron
Wausau police say the victim knew the attacker but no arrest has been made as of yet. The attack remains under investigation
WSAU, October 8, 2011
Richard Dawkins attacks 'alien rubbish' taught in Muslim faith schools
The noted atheist claimed that pupils were being taught to ignore scientific evidence in favour of following the Koran.
He said that he had even met a science teacher who believed that the earth was only 6,000 years old.
Mr Dawkins, a former Oxford professor who found fame as an evolutionary biologist before becoming a vocal opponent of religion, is a longstanding critic of all faith schools.
But he has said that Islamic schools are worse than others, as their teaching is more likely to be influenced by a religious agenda.
Talking to the Times Educational Supplement, he described a trip he made to an 'utterly deplorable' Muslim school in Leicester.
According to the Daily Telegraph, he said: 'Every person I met believes if there is any disagreement between the Koran and science, then the Koran wins.
'It's just utterly deplorable. These are now British children who are having their minds stuffed with alien rubbish.'
Mr Dawkins added that the influence of faith schools often continues when their ex-pupils continue to university.
'Occasionally, my colleagues lecturing in universities lament having undergraduate students walk out of their classes when they talk about evolution,' he said. 'This is almost entirely Muslims.'
The bestselling author of The God Delusion said he had considered setting up an atheist school.
However, he also believes that it is important for children to learn about religious stories and traditions in order to understand cultural backgrounds and literary traditions.His new book, The Magic of Reality, is intended to make children enthusiastic about the wonders of science.
Hugo Gye, Mail Online, October 8, 2011
"Pride of Britain" father breaks a man's jaw and knocks out his teeth, charged with assault
Tariq Jahan, 47, is accused of breaking a man's jaw and knocking out two of his teeth in an alleged road rage incident.
Mr Jahan made a heartfelt plea to the public not to retaliate after his son Haroon and two friends died when they were hit by a car during riots.
A Crown Prosecution Service spokesman confirmed Mr Jahan had been charged with assaulting a man on 6 July.
He said: "He has been charged with GBH without intent and will appear before magistrates in Birmingham on Monday."
Haroon, 21, and brothers Shazad Ali, 30, and Abdul Musavir, 31, died in the early hours of 10 August when they were struck by a car in the Winson Green area of Birmingham.
They were trying to protect homes and businesses in the area from looters.
It was feared that revenge attacks following their deaths would spark a wave of violence.Mr Jahan received a Pride of Britain special recognition award this week for the compassion, dignity and calm he showed in the aftermath of his son's death.
BBC News, October 7, 2011
Pakistan: Doctor who helped U.S. track down Bin Laden could be put to death for 'high treason'
Such a charge carries the death penalty and is likely to infuriate U.S. officials, who are pushing for Dr Shakil Afridi's release.
He has been in the custody of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence agency since soon after the May 2 American raid that killed bin Laden.
The agency was humiliated and outraged by the covert American operation and is aggressively investigating the circumstances surrounding it.
Dr Afridi's fate is a complicating issue in relations between the CIA and the ISI that were strained to the breaking point by the Bin Laden raid.
U.S. and Pakistani officials have said Dr Arifdi ran a vaccination programme in the Pakistani town of Abbottabad where the Al Qaeda leader hid in an effort to obtain a DNA sample from him.
Dr Afridi was detained in the days after the U.S. operation. He has no lawyer.
A Pakistani government commission investigating the raid on bin Laden said in a statement that it was of the view that: 'a case of conspiracy against the state of Pakistan and high treason' should be registered against Dr Afridi on the basis of the evidence it had gathered.
It did not elaborate.
The commission, which interviewed Dr Afridi and the head of the ISI, Lieutenant General Ahmed Shuja Pasha this week, has been tasked with investigating how bin Laden managed to hide in the army town of Abbottabad for up to five years, and the circumstances surrounding the U.S. operation.
It is headed by a Supreme Court justice, and its members include a retired general, a former diplomat, a former police chief and a civil servant.
It is unclear why the body would make this recommendation public, and whether it will lead to charges being filed against Dr Afridi.
The commission was formed amid intense international pressure for answers over how bin Laden was able to live undetected for so long in Abbottabad, an army town close to the capital.
Sceptics will say it is unlikely to achieve that goal, given the power of the ISI and the army, and may well end up a whitewash.
The vaccination ruse has been widely criticised by aid agencies, which have said it could harm legitimate immunisation programmes in Pakistan.
The vaccination team was reported to have gained access bin Laden's house in Abbottabad, but that it did not confirm bin Laden's presence there.American authorities are trying to rescue the Pakistani doctor, his wife and children, and take them to the United States, according to Pakistani and US officials.
Associated Press, October 7, 2011
Russian scandal: Ex-"porn star" and critic of Islam awarded at Muslim Film Festival
The scandal allegedly emerged at the suggestion of the Tatarstan Muslims Spiritual leader Ildus Faizov.
The Islamic activist addressed The Culture Ministry, roundly criticizing the festival. He noted his major disappointment in the choice of the Grand Prix winner. The award-winning German actress Sibel Kekilli is known for criticizing Islam and having starred in several porn films in the past.
According to Faizov, Kekilli openly has stated her negative attitude to Islam, accusing the religion of including violence as one of its integral parts.Sibel Kekilli was named Best Actress for her role in German drama When We Leave. However, her name was not even mentioned on the festival’s website.
RT, October 7, 2011
Canada: Landlords face no punishment for discrimination in online "Muslims Only" ads
It’s the exact kind of specifications the Ontario Human Rights Commission recently warned landlords against putting in their online classified ads —any denial of a prospective tenant due to race, ethnic origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age and disability, among other things, is grounds for discrimination according to the Ontario Human Rights Commission’s housing policy and the Ontario Human Rights Code.
But for all its condemnation of the practice, the commission this week said they can’t police these online ads, that it’s out of their hands.
Instead, a person would have to call up the prospective landlord and file a complaint if it is clear they were not considered for the apartment because they weren’t Muslim, for example, or Chinese, Korean or Japanese as one other Craigslist Vancouver ad said it would prefer the successful tenants to be.
“If you say ‘Muslim only,’ in the law, you’d be discriminating against Buddhists, against Christians. That could be grounds for an application of the human rights code,” said Geordie Dent, executive director of the Federation of Metro Tenants’ Associations. Complaints about landlord discrimination regularly trickle into his office and other legal clinics in Toronto, but few are pursued because of the momentous financial and time commitment costs that come with hiring a lawyer and seeing a lengthy tribunal case.
Many such ads appear on sites specifically geared toward one community. But a search Wednesday brought up 32 results for “Muslim only” requests under the real estate category on Kijiji.ca. When contacted by the National Post, one landlord looking to rent a one bedroom apartment in Brampton, Ont., said he “does not want to give the apartment to any other people,” besides Indians or Muslims, as his ad requires. He did not have a specific reason for only wanting to rent to Indians or Muslims, nor did he deny knowing about the Ontario Human Rights Code implications. Another landlord who said in his ad for a two bedroom basement apartment in Mississauga that he would welcome Muslim families said he would also accept other tenants who were not of that faith, so long as they did not drink. The ad says nothing about prohibiting alcohol. Yet another, on Torontomuslims.com, advertises a spacious 1 bedroom apartment for a Muslim bachelor.
Despite the provisions in the Ontario Human Rights Code that say every person has a right to seek housing without discrimination and that no one should announce intention to discriminate against people, ethnicity-specific ads are indeed common enough that the Commission issued guidelines this June about how to write a fair housing ad, said Rosemary Bennett, a spokesperson for the Ontario Human Rights Commission. The move came after the commission yielded numerous complaints, which would not apply to ads for shared accommodations (in those, one can discriminate so to get the kind of roommate they want), but for separate-entrance apartments.
“We haven’t investigated any of these housing things because it’s kind of hard to do,” Ms. Bennett said. “We’re such a small organization with such a large number of possibilities for contravening the code.”
The commission’s mandate changed in 2008 to no longer investigate individual complaints — those would go to the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. The fact that the ads are online also pushes it out of Ontario’s jurisdiction and into federal territory, she said, even if the rental address is in the province.
For its part, the commission says it sees fewer cases of favouring a certain race or ethnicity and excluding others than it does those who actively exclude, Ms. Bennett said.
“We tend to usually see the reverse of that, such as ‘no blacks need apply, no people who are LGBT can live here, nobody who’s Chinese,’ so I think that tends to be the larger issue,” she said.
A spokesman for the right tribunal said it doesn’t investigate complaints, but will hear evidence compiled by complainants and their lawyers.
There is such a thing as “positive discrimination” in the Ontario Human Rights Code —renting only to people 65 and older if you’re running a retirement residence, said Vince Brescia, president and CEO of the Federation of Rental-Housing Providers of Ontario. And while people have a “natural inclination” to seek a certain type of tenant, the law doesn’t give them much control over that, he said.
“If you have bigoted beliefs I think that might be your lost opportunity,” he said. “The law says you can’t do it, but on top of that, you’re turning away prospective customers and that just doesn’t seem like a great business decision.”Messages to the Toronto landlord went unanswered Tuesday.
Sarah Boesveld, National Post, October 6, 2011
Spain: Muslims declare jihad on dogs, with dog owners harassed and dogs poisoned
All of the dogs were poisoned in September (local media reports here, here, here, here and here) in Lérida's working class neighbourhoods of Cappont and La Bordeta, districts that are heavily populated by Muslim immigrants and where many dogs have been killed in recent years.
Local residents say Muslim immigrants killed the dogs because according to Islamic teaching dogs are "unclean" animals.
Over the past several months, residents taking their dogs for walks have been harassed by Muslim immigrants opposed to seeing the animals in public. Muslims have also launched a number of anti-dog campaigns on Islamic websites and blogs based in Spain.
In response to the "lack of sufficient police to protect the neighbourhood," 50 local residents have established alternating six-person citizen patrols to escort people walking their dogs.
In July, two Islamic groups based in Lérida asked city officials to regulate the presence of dogs in public spaces so they do not "offend Muslims." Muslims are demanding that dogs be banned from all forms of public transportation including all city buses as well as from all areas frequented by Muslim immigrants.
Muslims in Lérida say the presence of dogs violates their religious freedom and their right to live according to Islamic principles.Dogs are not the only Islam-related controversy in Lérida, where 29,000 Muslims now make up around 20 percent of the city's total population.
Soeren Kern, Hudson New York, October 6, 2011
Australia: Council spending ratepayers' money to spread the word of Islam
Darebin Council in Melbourne's north is doing the hiring, using a grant from the Federal Attorney General Rober McClelland's Counter Violent Extremism Fund.
The successful applicant will be paid $66,000 a year.
As a ratepayer Vicki Janson says the community was never consulted, and as the Deputy President of the Q Society - a group concerned with the Islamification of Australia - she's outraged.
“We're for integration not segregation, and really for upholding what we would call Australian values,” Janson said.
The Attorney General sees the plan as a way of building a strong and cohesive society, and resilience in the community against extremism.
The job description states that the officer’s role will be to "Strengthen the Islamic Society of Victoria and (find) how they can be more effective in the community". Also to implement strategies that assist the Islamic Society to dispel myths and misconceptions about Muslims and Islam.
It’s an honourable pursuit, but should ratepayers be footing the bill to promote one religion over another?
The Ratepayers Association's Jack Davis asks “are we going to subsidise all these other religions for the same sort of thing?”
Nazeem Hussein is spokesperson for the Islamic Council of Victoria and says the initiative is all about educating Anglo-Australians, not recruiting for the Islamic faith.
“I think Australians do need to perhaps step out and understand people who aren't from an Anglo-Saxon background. We do in Australia have a problem with not really understanding our diverse, multi-cultural, multi-religious groups that do exist within this broad society,” he said.
“I think a lot of the critics actually have that fear or that lack of understanding about what it means to be Muslim and these sorts of people would actually be natural participants in this program.”
The Attorney General declined to be interviewed but in a statement revealed the Gillard Government has spent more than $9.7 million on similar initiatives to counter radicalisation in our communities - from sporting clubs to Islamic Associations and Arabic social services.
However, no program like this for any other religious group has ever been run before, so the question that remains unanswered is why now?
“This isn't specifically targeted at benefiting a section of the community, it's targeted at benefiting the whole community, so we need to keep that in mind,” Hussein said.The job description says nothing about having to be a Muslim to apply for the position.
Jonathan Creek, Today Tonight, October 5, 2011
Germany shooting suspect fooled by anti-war propaganda: Now says violence was not justified
Arid Uka is charged with two counts of murder for the March 2 slayings of Senior Airman Nicholas J. Alden, 25, from South Carolina, and Airman 1st Class Zachary R. Cuddeback, 21, from Virginia.
The 21-year-old also faces three counts of attempted murder for wounding two more airmen and taking aim at a third before his gun misfired.
He confessed to the attacks as his trial opened in August, saying that the night before the crime he had seen an online video that purported to show American soldiers raping a teenage Muslim girl. It turned out to be a scene from the 2007 anti-war Brian De Palma-directed film "Redacted," taken out of context.
At the time, he said the video prompted him to take action, saying that he wanted to do anything possible to prevent more Americans from going to Afghanistan.
Despite admitting to the crimes, no pleas are entered in under the German system and the court still has to hear all the evidence in the case.
When asked in court Wednesday whether he still believed that the Islamic religion sanctioned killing, he said only in cases of self defense.
"What I did, certainly not," he told the court.
But he said he has not abandoned his religion.
"I still believe in God ... I'm still a Muslim ... I still pray," he said.
In other evidence Wednesday, the court heard a report from the Federal Criminal Police Office's forensic examination of the 9mm Argentine-made pistol and the ammunition used in the slaying.
Experts determined that the weapon misfired because of a defect in one of the bullets, which came from three different manufacturers.Uka has refused to tell the court where he got the gun, but said Wednesday he did not know why the ammunition came from three places -- saying only that he had received it and the weapon in a bag together.
Claudia Isabel Rittel, Associated Press, October 5, 2011
13 killed in Pakistan shooting attacks
Sunni militants with ideological and operational links to al Qaida and the Taliban have carried out scores of bombings and shootings against minority Shiites in recent years, but the past couple weeks have been particularly bloody.
The gunmen who carried out today's attack were riding motorbikes and stopped a bus carrying mostly Shiite Muslims who were heading for work at a vegetable market on the outskirts of Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan province, said police official Hamid Shakeel.
They forced people off the bus, made them stand in a line and then opened fire, he said. The dead included 12 Shiites and one Sunni, he said. Seven people were wounded - five Shiites and two Sunnis.
Local TV footage showed relatives wailing at the hospital where the dead and wounded were taken. One relative hugged a wounded man as another walked by, his clothes soaked with blood.
Shiites blocked the main highway on the outskirts of Quetta to protest at the killings and set fire to the bus which took the dead and wounded to the hospital.
Sunni extremists carried out a similar attack on Shiite pilgrims travelling through Baluchistan about two weeks ago, killing 26 people.
Pakistan is a majority Sunni Muslim state, with around 15% Shiite.
Most Sunnis and Shiites live together peacefully in Pakistan, though tensions have existed for decades. In the 1980s and 1990s, Pakistan became the scene of a proxy war between mostly Shiite Iran and Sunni Saudi Arabia, with both sides funnelling money to sectarian groups which regularly targeted each other.
The level of sectarian violence has declined somewhat since then, but attacks continue. In recent years, Sunni attacks on Shiites have been far more common.
The groups have been energised by al-Qa'ida and the Taliban, which are also Sunni and share the belief that Shiites are infidels and it is permissible to kill them. The Sunni-Shiite schism over the true heir to Islam's Prophet Muhammad dates back to the seventh century.
Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, one of the country's most ruthless Sunni militant groups, claimed responsibility for the attack in Baluchistan two weeks ago. One of its alleged leaders, Malik Ishaq, was released from prison on bail in July after being held for 14 years on charges, never proven, of killing Shiites.
Ishaq was re-arrested about a week ago after making inflammatory speeches against Shiites in the country. He was not charged but detained under a public order act, which means he can be held for three months.It is not clear whether Ishaq's speeches have been connected to the recent wave of sectarian attacks.
The Independent, October 4, 2011
Australia: Immigration detainees smoking habits costing taxpayers more than $1.4 million a year
The Opposition accused the government of providing its own "mini-stimulus" package for the tobacco industry.
Detainees earn points in the immigration detention system worth up to $50 a week by participating in education and activity programs. They then use points to purchase items, including cigarettes and tobacco products or phone cards.
The tobacco costs were released in an answer provided by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship to a question asked by Liberal senator Michaelia Cash in senate estimates hearings.
It revealed the company that manages the detention centres, Serco, has spent on average $1.4 million a year on tobacco products for detainees since the 2009-10 financial year when the number of detainees began to steadily increase. It provided a list of the favourite brands of cigarettes preferred by detainees.
They included Winfield Red and Blue, Peter Jackson Original, Marlboro, Longbeach, Champion, Gudang Garam, Ventti rolling papers and filters and tube machines.
"The products stocked at each facility vary slightly depending on the cohort of people detained at that facility," the department said.
"It is important to remember that immigration detention is administrative, not punitive. People in immigration care are not being punished and have access to everyday items that are available to the public. Quit information and support products are available."
The government, under pressure over the blow-out in costs of holding people in detention, has warned the bill will continue to rise if the Coalition maintained its refusal to support legislation allowing the government to pursue off-shore processing - the revival of the Malaysia people swap deal.
The bill to overturn the High Court decision to rule off-shore processing illegal is expected to be voted on next week in Parliament but will be rejected by the Coalition.
Immigration Minister Chris Bowen has warned detention centre costs will blow out by another $1 billion over the next four years if the government is forced to continue mainland processing of asylum seekers who arrive by boat.
Opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison said no one was to blame other than the government and the tobacco costs were just a symptom of the blowout of running detention centres and the number of people in them since Labor came to power.
"Labor's four years of border protection failure has created their own mini-stimulus package for the tobacco industry," Mr Morrison said.
"The chaos and cost blowouts in our detention network is a constant reminder of why Labor just can't be trusted on border protection.
"Now Labor wants a blank cheque in the parliament for their already failed Malaysia agreement," he said.There are currently 5780 people in detention and a further 900 in the community.
Simon Benson, The Daily Telegraph, October 4, 2011
Wife-killer sues Ohio over Halal meals
The state said Monday that it has already removed pork from its menus in response to the lawsuit brought by condemned inmate Abdul Awkal, who argues the prison system's failure to provide halal meals is a restraint on his religious freedoms.
Awkal, joined by a second inmate not on death row, says the vegetarian and non-pork options offered by the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction aren't good enough. The inmates say food must be prepared in specific fashion, such as ensuring that an animal is butchered by slitting its throat and draining its blood, to conform to Islamic beliefs.
"The issue of eating Halal meals is especially important to me because I face a death sentence," Awkal said in a filing in federal court earlier this year. "It is important to me that I follow the requirements of my faith as I approach death."
The state's recent decision to drop pork from all meals accommodates religious preferences without jeopardizing security, said Carlo LoParo, spokesman for the state corrections department. It "eliminates any doubt that Muslims or any inmate who has a specific prohibition against pork products receives pork inadvertently or otherwise," he said.
"It's a concession that we can make that doesn't compromise other aspects of our operation," he said.
But Monday's announcement doesn't solve that meat isn't slaughtered in the appropriate way for Muslim inmates who adhere to religious tradition, said David Singleton, executive director of the Ohio Justice and Policy Center, which brought the lawsuit on Awkal's behalf. He said the lawsuit will continue.
A judge has given lawyers and inmates for the state until next month to finish filing documents bolstering their arguments, ahead of an expected January trial.
Awkal, 52, is scheduled to die in June for killing his estranged wife, Latife Awkal, and brother-in-law Mahmoud Abdul-Aziz in 1992, in a room in Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations Court.
Joining Awkal in the lawsuit is Cornelius Causey, 35, serving 15 years to life for murder and aggravated robbery convictions out of Hamilton County.
Ohio argues that it provides both non-pork and vegetarian meals to Muslims and says the courts have sided with this practice. The state also says that providing halal meals could hurt Ohio financially, given the current budget situation.
"The complete restructuring of ODRC's food service administration and preparation, at a cost of millions to the State of Ohio during fiscal crisis, is at stake," Ryan Dolan, an assistant attorney general, argued in a court filing.
Ohio included in its response to the lawsuit a document from a Muslim who does regular spiritual counseling of Muslim inmates.
While Imam Sunni-Ali Islam said he thought it was problematic that Ohio provided kosher but not halal meals, he said he doesn't think it rises to the level of religious discrimination.
The state's prison guidelines for Jewish prisoners say, "The Department will accommodate kosher dietary restrictions to recognized Jewish inmates." Kosher guidelines also address proper ways to slaughter animals and prepare meat.
For Muslim inmates, prison rules say, "The diet will be free of all pork and products containing or derived from pork. The institution will provide nutritionally adequate meat and non-meat alternatives."
Ohio spends about $3.50 to $7 on kosher meals compared to $1.70 for regular meals, LoParo said. He would not comment on the lawsuit itself beyond documents filed in support of the state position.
California provides packaged kosher meals to Jewish inmates and halal meals prepared at prisons for Muslim prisoners. Meats used for the halal meals are cooked separately from other prison food, said spokesman Paul Herke.
The state serves about 4,100 halal meals a day at a cost of about $3.50 per day, compared with about $2.90 a day for regular prison meals.
"We would consider that a pretty nominal difference," Herke said.
Arizona provides vegetarian and other options to satisfy the halal requirement but does not provide meals specifically dubbed halal.
Similarly, Muslim inmates in Texas can select regular, meat-free or pork-free meals but are not served halal meals. Massachusetts serves both kosher and halal meals.Ohio says requiring halal meals could mean new dietary plans for as many as 2,000 inmates, while Awkal's lawyers believe the figure is lower because not all Muslims eat halal meals.
Andrew Welsh-Huggins, Associated Press, October 3, 2011
US: Supreme Court Refuses to Hear OC Head Scarf Case
The case started before U.S. District Judge David O. Carter in Santa Ana, who sided with county officials. A panel of federal appellate justices agreed with Carter in May 2010, but in December the full Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 11-0 to reverse Carter's ruling, said Mark Rosenbaum, an American Civil Liberties Union attorney who argued the case on behalf of Souhair Khatib.
"It's a landmark religious freedom ruling," Rosenbaum told City News Service. "It's an important victory because it means that in this facility (the holding cell at the courthouse) religious freedoms will be applicable."
The case could go back to Carter's courtroom to rule on a related issue -- whether authorities have the right to ask someone in custody to remove the hijab or other religious head covering when there's an obvious security concern, Rosenbaum said.
"My hope is the county will rethink its position and come in line with the United States," Rosenbaum said, adding the U.S. Justice Department sided with him in the oral arguments before the full appellate court because federal detention centers recognize a federal law that prohibits discrimination against religious head coverings.
"The Justice Department in its security facilities do not ban (such head coverings)," Rosenbaum said.
Orange County sheriff's deputies asked Khatib to remove her hijab while she was being held on two separate occasions in a holding cell in the North County Justice Center in Fullerton. They wanted the scarf removed because it could be considered a weapon, but Khatib argued it was against her religion to remove the scarf in the presence of men who were not her husband.
Khatib was being held on a welfare fraud probation violation.A main issue in the case was whether a courthouse holding facility could be considered like a prison or a jail, covering it under the federal law preventing authorities from making those in custody remove religious head coverings.
MyFox Los Angeles, October 3, 2011
Muslim hoax of persecution by Indonesian "Crusaders" fuels violence and terrorism against Christians
There, on arrahmah.com, was an article condemning Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono for his strong and quickly delivered words against the violent act in Solo, contrasting it with a supposedly weak response to the alleged attacks on Muslims by Christians in Ambon.
It continued with a litany of falsehoods, including claims that a village had been burnt down and that thousands of Muslims remained in mosques in Ambon, seeking refuge from the crusader hordes.
In two days some 20,000 people had retweeted the message. Disturbingly, it was just the latest in a series of highly inflammatory tweets, SMS and Facebook postings sowing the seeds of disharmony and promoting terrorism in Indonesia.
Last month, there were two striking examples of the power of social media to spread misinformation and promote conflict.
On September 11, a deadly riot broke out in Ambon, an island in Maluku in eastern Indonesia. Seven people died and scores of homes and vehicles were damaged after rumours spread by SMS, Twitter and Facebook that a Muslim had been captured and tortured to death by Christians. In fact, he died in a traffic accident.
Three days later, in Makassar, a city in South Sulawesi, a mentally ill man went on a stabbing rampage killing three people. The man happened to be a Christian and within hours, SMS and Twitter messages were warning of co-ordinated Christian attacks on Muslims.
Two Christian men were stabbed in retaliation and more than 1000 people fled to a police school to seek refuge from Christian attacks that never occurred.Indonesian police yesterday said they had arrested a wanted terror suspect, Ben Asri, in connection with the Solo bombing.
Journal of Turkish Weekly, October 3, 2011
Senior leader of Bangladesh's largest Islamic party charged with crimes against humanity and genocide
The war crimes tribunal accused Delawar Hossain Sayedee of mass murder and torture among other crimes. He denies all the allegations.
Mr Sayedee, a leader in Bangladesh's Jamaat-e-Islami party, was arrested last year.
The tribunal was set up in 2010 to try those accused of crimes during the war.
Bangladesh was called East Pakistan until 1971 when a nine-month war of secession broke out leaving up to three million people dead.
"The court has framed charges on 20 counts including crimes against humanity and genocide against Mr Sayedee," Mohammad Shahinur Islam, registrar of the International Crimes Tribunal, told the BBC.
"He pleaded not guilty. He claimed all those allegations were false.
"With the framing of charges the trial has started. As a citizen, I should say this is a historic day for Bangladesh," Mr Islam said.
The case will be next heard on 30 October when the prosecution will make an opening statement.
Official figures estimate that thousands of women were raped when West Pakistan sent in its army to try and stop East Pakistan becoming an independent Bangladesh.
Last year, the Bangladeshi government set up the International Crimes Tribunal in Dhaka to try those Bangladeshis accused of collaborating with Pakistani forces and committing atrocities during months of violence.
Mr Sayedee is among seven people, including two from the main opposition Bangladeshi Nationalist Party, facing trial. All of them deny the accusations and accuse the government of carrying out a vendetta.
The New York-based Human Rights Watch says the tribunal needs to change some of its procedures to ensure a fair trial which meets international standards.The trial is likely to go on for months.
Anbarasan Ethirajan, BBC News, October 3, 2011
US: Woman accused of funneling money to terrorist group in Somalia arrested
Chief U.S. District Judge Michael Davis found Amina Farah Ali in contempt for failing to stand as court convened and recessed several times during the day, and later sentenced her to 50 days in jail.
He also ordered Ali to be detained for the duration of the trial because of her "behavior in this courtroom." She had been released pending trial as long as she did not violate any laws, but in a written order on Monday, Davis said Ali violated the law when she failed to rise and he revoked her release.
Ali, 35, and her co-defendant, Hawo Mohamed Hassan, 64, are accused of being part of what prosecutors called a "deadly pipeline" that sent more than $8,600 and fighters from the U.S. to Somalia.
As jury selection was beginning Monday, Ali refused to stand when Davis entered the courtroom. She was arrested, and there was a brief recess before court resumed. Davis also said if Ali continued to refuse to rise for the jury, she would not be allowed in the courtroom during her trial, and would have to watch the proceedings electronically.
"I hope that you will rise when the jury appears, but that's your choice," Davis told Ali in court.
Her attorney, Dan Scott, objected to Davis's decision, saying his client believes she has the First Amendment right to practice her religion - and that her beliefs should trump courtroom decorum. Scott said his client also has the Sixth Amendment right to confront her accusers.
"The mere failure to stand is not so disruptive that the case could not go forward," Scott said.
Davis said Scott's interpretation of the law is wrong. In his written order, Davis said that while religious freedom is protected, Ali hasn't shown that her rights take precedence over the requirement to rise, which is designed to mark the beginning and end of court sessions, show respect for the system and help judges maintain order.
Davis last week issued an order stating all parties must honor the rules of courtroom decorum, or risk being sanctioned. He stressed that he was not denying Ali's religion, but that she must follow the rules, just like everybody else, and noted she was directly disobeyed that order."I have said I am doing this for religious reasons," Ali said through a court interpreter. "I am not going to stand up for anyone except Allah."
Amy Forliti, Associated Press, October 3, 2011
2 years after his arrest for apostasy, Iran now tries to justify pastors death sentence with rape claim
Previous reports indicated that Nadarkhani was found guilty of apostasy because he converted to Christianity as a teenager. Nadarkhani has been sentenced to death by hanging for the crime, which is technically not in Iran's penal code but is a religious doctrine enforced by an official fatwa.
"His crime is not, as some claim, converting others to Christianity," Gholomali Rezvani, the Gilan province deputy governor, told Fars news agency. "He is guilty of security-related crimes."
However, a December 2010 court ruling issued and signed by Supreme Court judges Morteza Fazel and Azizoallah Razaghi mentions the religious charges against Nadarkhani and nothing more.
"Mr. Youcef Nadarkhani, son of Byrom, 32 years old, married, born in Rasht in the state of Gilan, is convicted of turning his back on Islam, the greatest religion the prophesy of Mohammad at the age of 19," the document states.
"He has often participated in Christian worship and organized home church services, evangelizing and has been baptized and baptized others, converting Muslims to Christianity. He has been accused of breaking Islamic Law that from puberty (15 years according to Islamic law) until the age of 19 the year 1996, he was raised a Muslim in a Muslim home.
"During court trials, he denied the prophecy of Mohammad and the authority of Islam. He has stated that he is a Christian and no longer Muslim. During many sessions in court with the presence of his attorney and a judge, he has been sentenced to execution by hanging according to article 8 of Tahrir–olvasileh."
After the subpoena, the Supreme Court eventually ruled that the death penalty, on grounds of encouraging "other Muslims to convert to Christianity," should be upheld.
The new rape report was the first time that the Iranian government has mentioned any charge other than apostasy. Additionally, the little information from inside the Iranian court rooms that has surfaced indicates that Nadarkhani would be released if he chose to repent and convert to Islam.
"[Nadarkhani] was brought to court to repent for three days. He denied repentance on all three days," Nadarkhani's lawyer Mohammad Ali Dadkhah told the International Campaign for Human Rights last week.
"I said in my last defense that his execution is not an appropriate and legal action from the viewpoint of Sharia Law, our own laws, and international laws, and I believe that the court accepted my opinion," said Dadkhah. "I hope the court will vote for his acquittal and he will be released in the coming week.
"The Judge kept asking my client to say, 'I have renounced Christianity and I recognize Islam as rescinder of all other regions,' and he kept saying 'I won't say that.'"
Nadarkhani, who used to lead a congregation of about 400 people, was first arrested in Rasht in 2009. He was found guilty of apostasy in 2010 and sentenced to death, a sentence that has been upheld after a series of appeals that reached as far as Iran's Supreme Court.
As the case slowly garners international attention, the rape allegation is a signal that Nadarkhani has become, to put it bluntly, a public relations disaster for Iran.
In what could prove to be Nadarkhani's last days, world leaders have finally condemned the death sentence and pushed for the pastor's release.
On Thursday, a day after the death sentence was upheld during the final appeals trial, President Barack Obama and the White House had harsh words for Iran, calling the sentence a violation of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, of which Iran is a signatory.
"The United States condemns the conviction of Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani. Pastor Nadarkhani has done nothing more than maintain his devout faith, which is a universal right for all people," the White House Press Secretary said in a statement.
"That the Iranian authorities would try to force him to renounce that faith violates the religious values they claim to defend, crosses all bounds of decency, and breaches Iran’s own international obligations. A decision to impose the death penalty would further demonstrate the Iranian authorities' utter disregard for religious freedom, and highlight Iran's continuing violation of the universal rights of its citizens. We call upon the Iranian authorities to release Pastor Nadarkhani, and demonstrate a commitment to basic, universal human rights, including freedom of religion."
A number of U.S. congressmen and Speaker of the House John Boehner, as well as Germany, the European Union and UK Foreign Secretary William Hague, have also issued statements deploring the death sentence.The increased attention is again casting a negative light on Iran, which has been verbally attacked by Western powers and even al-Qaida in recent weeks.
Daniel Tovrov, International Business Times, October 2, 2011
Australia: Police tail Sydney's jihad gang
The Sunday Telegraph can reveal that NSW Police and national security agencies have been investigating the group members for over a year, with the case currently active.
The extremists have been the subject of a top secret operation led by the NSW Police Force, ASIO, Australian Federal Police and the NSW Crime Commission.
A group of men, aged between 20 and 30, all Australian citizens of Middle Eastern-descent, have been identified as the core members.
Police believe the men, who have been under detailed surveillance, have been planning a series of elaborate criminal enterprises to raise significant sums of cash.
The Sunday Telegraph has been told authorities suspect at least one of the men wanted to send money overseas to support terrorism networks.
However, police insisted yesterday they had no evidence of money transfers out of Australia.
"You have guys with extreme views and a position about the conflict in the Middle East," a source said.
"They formed an alliance along the same form of beliefs."
However, when questioned about the terrorism probe, a police spokesman said: "NSW Police Force doesn't comment on current counter-terrorism investigations."
Senior police confirmed to The Sunday Telegraph the investigation was continuing and that several "associates" who moved in and out of the group were being assessed.
Counter-terrorism chiefs evaluated the group as being "in the extreme category" of religious ideology, saying that they were inspired to act based on "events in the Middle East".
The youngest member of the group expressed an interest to train with the Taliban in Afghanistan with an aim to "engage" Coalition forces, a police source said.
The individual also had a desire to become a "martyr" through "jihad", and followed the teachings of the al-Qaeda spiritual leader Anwar al-Awlaqi, who was killed on Friday night in an American air raid in Yemen.
Police have internet posts by the man who writes of his support for the "Mujahideen" heading into Afghanistan to defend Islam.
He says he has no desire to become a suicide bomber but yearns to be a martyr.
The Sunday Telegraph cannot reveal details of the investigation into the men, or their identities, for legal reasons.
Authorities said there has been "no suggestion" that members of the targeted group were planning a terrorist act in Australia.
Members of the group followed the teachings of a Sydney sheik. They also regularly attended the sheik's prayer sessions.
The sheik is linked to a fundamentalist branch of Islam which the men are said to be "very supportive of".
Police said the sheik was not associated in any way with the terrorist group or their activities."These people often had views which were more extreme than (the sheik)," a law enforcement source said.
Yoni Bashan, The Sunday Telegraph, October 2, 2011
UK: Hate preacher wins human rights payout... even though he shouldn't be here at all
The High Court ruled yesterday that Sheikh Raed Salah, described as a ‘virulent anti-Semite’ in the Commons, could claim compensation for unlawful detention by immigration officers.
They had seized the pro-Palestine hardliner – who should never have been allowed into Britain in the first place – to have him deported.
But immigration staff failed to explain to him ‘in a language he could understand’ precisely why he was being detained – a technical breach of the rules. The preacher cannot speak English and officials failed properly to translate what was happening, the court ruled.
As a result – even though the Home Secretary had legal powers to hold him – he was unlawfully detained for 34.5 hours, until proper explanations were given to him about what was happening in Arabic.
At one stage, an immigration officer had tried to use an ‘app’ on his iPhone to give instructions to the extremist.
But he did not give Salah, 52, all the information required to make his detention lawful, Mr Justice Nicol decided.
Salah can now formally apply for taxpayer-funded compensation. The likely pay-out is between £4,000 and £5,000 – or about £150 for every hour he was held.
Michael Weiss, of the Henry Jackson Society think-tank, said the case was an ‘embarrassment’ for UK Border Agency officials.
‘I find it scandalous that someone like this is getting damages and is being paid with British taxpayers’ money,’ he said.
Tory MP Patrick Mercer said he was shocked by news of the ruling.
‘We speak English in this country and anybody that wants to come here and preach hate is going to do so in English as well,’ he added.
‘I fail to see the logic of what has happened. Yet again some form of craziness is making Britain look ridiculous.’
Salah, leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, managed to walk through immigration checks at Heathrow Airport on June 25 despite being barred from the UK by the Home Secretary.
Immigration officials had failed to inform him of the ban – and he was unaware that he should not travel here.
He was finally detained three days later on the direct orders of Theresa May, but only after addressing meetings in London and Leicester. The
Home Secretary ordered that Salah be removed on the grounds that his presence was not ‘conducive to the public good’.
Court papers say Mrs May has alleged that Salah has ‘publicly expressed views that fostered hatred which might lead to inter-community violence in the UK’.
He denies being an anti-Semite and is challenging his removal.
Lawyers claim his treatment was a breach of Article 10 of the Human
Rights Act – the right to ‘freedom of expression’. A separate court appeal on this row is due to take place next week.
In the meantime, Salah has been released on bail and is staying at a five-bedroom detached house in a leafy suburb in North London while his case is processed.
He is credited with a string of outrageous statements, although he denies being an extremist. He is said to have claimed that the 9/11 plot was carried out by Israelis and that Jews were warned not to go to the World Trade Centre before the murderous attack in New York on September 11, 2001.
He was released from prison in 2005 after serving two years for fundraising for the Palestinian terror group Hamas and for having contact with an Iranian spy.
It is understood that Government solicitors will fight the claim for compensation on the grounds that it is a minor point and his overall detention was lawful.A Home Office spokesman said: ‘The decision the Home Secretary took was the right one. The court decided there was a technical problem when he was detained.'
Chris Greenwood And James Slack, Mail Online, October 1, 2011
Caucasian Leader: "Iran a pioneering country in defending the rights of the worldwide Muslims"
"The successful holding of the Tehran conference under the current conditions plays an important role in the materialization of the Palestinian people's rights," Pashazadeh, the Grand Mufti of the Caucasus, said in a meeting with Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani on Sunday.
Elsewhere, he described Islam as a major, and rather the most important, commonality of the Iranian and Azeri nations, and said the two countries enjoy very profound and brotherly relations.
The 5th International Conference on the Palestinian Intifada kicked off work here in Tehran on Saturday with over 50 parliamentary delegations and political figures, elites and intellectuals and many state officials from Muslim and non-Muslim countries in attendance.
The main goal of the conference is to voice support for the Palestinian intifada.
According to the secretary of the conference, parliamentary delegations from Qatar, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Indonesia, Kuwait, Paraguay, Zimbabwe, Zanzibar, Comoros, Malawi, Egypt, Oman, Ivory Coast, Mexico, Malaysia, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Cuba, Sudan, Bolivia, Caucasus, Hungary, Colombia, Tanzania, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan are present in the meeting.
Iran has always shown a strong support for the Palestinians' rights. In his inaugural address to the Tehran conference on Intifada on Saturday, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei dismissed the two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict as a cover to legitimize the existence of the Zionist regime, and asked for the full liberation of all Palestinian territories.
"Our demand is freedom of Palestine not part of Palestine.""Any plan that seeks to divide Palestine is totally rejected," the Leader noted.
Fars News, October 2, 2011
Several thousand Muslims, following Friday prayers, demolish and torch Coptic church
In an interview on Coptic TV channel, Father Salib of St. George's Church said "the Imam of one of the village mosques called on the people to take matter in their own hands, he added. Other witnesses named the Imam as Sheikh Sabry.
According to eyewitnesses the Muslims also torched a large depot of electrical goods owned by a Copt, a supermarket and four Coptic homes. Muslims prevented the fire brigade from entering the village. Security forces, which were present, "stood there watching," said Mr.Michael Ramzy, a social worker at the church.
Dr. Naguib Gabriel, head of the Egyptian Union of Human rights Organizations send an urgent message to field Marchall Tantawi to save the Copts in Egypt. "The Copts, their lives and their churches are in danger," he said.
Attorney Mamdouh Nakhla, head of Al-Kalema human rights organization condemned Muslims taking the law in their own hands. He said "if the Egyptian Government is unable to protect its citizens, then the civilized international society should step in immediately to stop this human tragedy."
The Media denied the incident. Mostafa el Sayed, Governor of Aswan, appeared on State TV tonight and denied any church being torched. He said it was a "guest home" and not a church. El Sayed said he gave his permission for the building to be 9 meters high, but the church contractor made it 13 meters high. "The contractor was slow in removing the 4 meters, so the Muslim youths took the matter into their hand." He said the fire was in a depot of the church which had the construction lumber.
He said that both parties are at fault, the Christians for exceeding the height and the Muslims for taking matters into their own hands. He added that he arranged for a "reconciliation" meeting to be held in the next two hours.
Father Salib refuted the governor of Aswan allegations that the torched construction was a guest home. He said St. George's church was been built 100 years ago and as it was dilapidated, the diocese was given permission to renovate it completely. He said that the Governor of Aswan himself signed the license for the renovation in 2010.
The renovation, although having all the necessary licenses from the government, prompted a crisis in Elmarinab village in the beginning of September. Islamists objected to the presence of a cross, bell and dome and prevented Copts from leaving their homes (AINA 9-9-2011).
Outspoken Coptic activist Wagih Jacob said what happened in Elmarinab is a scandal. The mob went out today, knowing that they have the support of Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF). "I accuse SCAF to be in collusion with these people as well as the Governor of Aswan and the head of prosecution."
Yacoub said that Coptic activists including himself are going to Aswan on Saturday to see what is happening there, even if they are killed. "I call on all Coptic men and Muslim liberals to join us to go to Aswan," He accused the Governor of Aswan of not telling the truth "because he knows very well that no media will go to the village to take photos there."
Georges Bouchra of Copts United NGO reported the Copts are staying indoors as it was rumored that Muslims have threatened to torch their homes tonight.
The Maspero Coptic Youth organization held a rally in the densely Coptic-populated district of Shubra in Cairo to protest the attack of Elmarinab church. It was attended by thousands (video).On October 1 several Coptic organizations, together with other liberal movements, will hold a rally under the motto "No to attacks on Coptic Churches" to start at 5 pm from Shubra and end in Tahrir Square.
Mary Abdelmassih, AINA, October 1, 2011
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