Thursday, June 22, 2017

USA: FBI Fired Islamophobe Sebastian Gorka for Anti-Muslim Diatribes

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Trump confidant Sebastian Gorka was taking money from the FBI—and declaring that the fight against Islamic radicals was “a holy war on our side,” too.

Facebook / Sebastian Gorka
Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit: The Daily Beast
By Spencer Ackerman | June 21, 2017

The inflammatory pundit Sebastian Gorka worked for the FBI while he was a paid consultant to Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, lecturing bureau employees on counterterrorism issues.

Until the FBI terminated Gorka for his over-the-top Islamophobic rhetoric.

The Daily Beast has learned that the Federal Bureau of Investigation ended its contract with Gorka just months before he joined the White House as a senior adviser to President Trump.

Law enforcement officials attending an August 2016 lecture from Gorka, whose academic credentials and affiliation with a pro-Nazi group have recently come under fire, were disturbed to hear a diatribe against Muslims passed off as instruction on the fundamentals of counterterrorism.

Sri Lanka: Why an anti-Muslim Buddhist monk is let off the hook every time

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President Sirisena said the government is concerned about the increasing “Arabization” of Sri Lankan Muslims, and the spread of fundamentalist Wahabi Islam, especially in the Eastern Province.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | US Desk
By  PK Balachandran | June 21, 2017

The anti-Muslim Sri Lankan Buddhist monk, Ven Galagoda Aththe Gnanasara Thero, General Secretary of the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS), has several serious cases against him relating to hate speech, blasphemy against the Quran, instigation of violence, and contempt of court.

And yet, he has been evading arrest for long periods, and when arrested, has always got out on bail quickly.

The reason  - Ven Gnanasara Thero has supporters at the highest political levels and perhaps even in the general population.

He is also operating at a time when governments, both in the South Asian region and elsewhere, tacitly support the majority community against the minorities.

Perspective: Security for CPEC | Talat Farooq

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While Islamist militants have often carried out abductions of foreigners in Pakistan either for ransom or to publicise their agenda, separatist groups have openly admitted to targeting CPEC.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit: The News
By Dr. Talat Farooq | June 18, 2017

On May 24, two Chinese language teachers were kidnapped from the supposedly secure zone in Quetta. The militant Islamic State group later claimed responsibility for the abduction. Now, Chinese and Pakistani officials are saying that the two abductees could have been killed. These unfortunate developments raise some decidedly disturbing questions. Last week, security forces conducted an intelligence-based operation against the IS-Lashkar-e-Jhangvi nexus in Splinji, Mastung, as part of Operation Raddul Fasaad. According to reports, a number of top commanders of the IS from different parts of the country had assembled in the Mastung area for a meeting when the raid began, killing at least a dozen commanders and capturing others.

According to a news report, ‘the level of the IS leadership claimed to have been taken out, when confirmed, indicates that it could be the biggest operation against the militant outfit since Lashkar-e-Jhangvi leader Malik Ishaq was killed along with his associates in Punjab in 2015, who were then said to be close to joining the IS.’

This reveals the unpleasant truth that the IS is not a peripheral threat, as many officials would have us believe, and that the evolving local militancy in Balochistan continues to pose a serious security risk to the state in general and CPEC in particular. To be fair, the security situation in Balochistan has improved in recent years. The army must be commended for this as well as for the various development projects it has undertaken over the years. However, as the recent event shows, violent groups continue to be a potent menace.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Pakistan: Authorities Disregard Attempted Murder of Minority Rights Journalist

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Various human rights NGOs working in Pakistan, including Reporters Without Borders and Amnesty International, call on the Pakistani government to take action.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit: UNPO
By UNPO | June 21, 2017

Tanveer writes for Express Tribune, an English-language newspaper that has been physically attacked on several occasions over its coverage of the problems of religious minorities in Pakistan.

On 9 June 2017, Rana Tanveer, a Pakistani minority rights journalist, faced an assassination attempt as he was deliberately hit by a car when he was riding his motorcycle. Tanveer survived the attack but is currently hospitalized with a broken leg. A few days prior to the attack, his home was vandalised and covered in hostile graffiti. Although Tanveer immediately reported the incident to the authorities, they took no action. Incidents such as these are all too common in Pakistan, where strict blasphemy laws fuel radicalism and threaten minorities, as well as those trying to protect minorities. Various human rights NGOs working in Pakistan, including Reporters Without Borders and Amnesty International, call on the Pakistani government to take action.

UK: Vigil held in Burnham after London and Manchester terror attacks

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Councillor Bhatti opened the vigil with a statement of condolence for the victims of the recent terror attacks in Manchester and London, and the victims of Grenfell Tower before inviting others to make a statement.

Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK desk
Source/Credit: Maidenhead Advertiser
By Stephen Delahunty | 20 June 2017

A vigil to show the strength of the community in the face of on-going threats from extremists was held outside Burnham Park Hall last Friday.

Organised by Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Slough, about 60-70 people attended the event including members of the public, faith leaders, schools representatives, the emergency services and the army.

Burnham Lent Wise ward councillor Atiq Ahmad Bhatti, also president of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Slough, helped organise the event.

He said: "It was an incredible show of solidarity.

"I think it went really well."

Indonesia: Ahmadiyyah Islamic sect say they're 'denied state IDs' over their beliefs

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Sixteen people from the village of Manislor in West Java, representing 1,400 members of the sect, told the ombudsman on Tuesday that their lives had been damaged by not having IDs for five years.

File photo
Times of Ahmad | News Watch | UK Desk
Source/Credit:  Reuters
By Gayatri Suroyo | June 21, 2017

The ombudsman felt there had been maladministration at the local Kuningan government 

Members of an Indonesian Islamic sect have issued a complaint that their human rights were breached by a local government refusing to issue them state ID cards unless they renounce their belief, a rights group said on Wednesday.

The Ahmadiyah identify themselves as Muslims, but believe another prophet followed the Prophet Mohammed, who founded Islam. Many mainstream Muslims and hardline groups accuse the sect and other Muslim minorities of apostasy.

A mob of 1,000 people beat to death three Ahmadis in an unprovoked attack in a village in Banten province, west of Jakarta, in 2011 and activists say the group continues to face discrimination.

USA: New Orleans-area Ahmadiyya Muslims invite community to share nightly Ramadan feast

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As sunset drew near on that Wednesday, everyone filled a plate with dried dates, fruit salad and pakoras, a fried chickpea fritter, and waited until precisely 8:02 p.m. to eat.

Photo credit: Chris Granger /
Times of Ahmad | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: | The Times-Picayune
By Anna Maloney | June 21, 2017

Just before sunset on Wednesday (June 14), members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community gathered at their center in Kenner, as they do each evening of Ramadan, to pray and break their fast.

Like millions of Muslims around the world, members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim sect abstain from eating or drinking, from dawn to dusk each day during the holy month. The means nothing by mouth - not even water.

Ramadan runs from Friday (May 26), through June 25, 2017.

At iftar, the nightly breaking of the fast, the faithful begin by praying, the men on one side of the center, the women on the other. The men lead the prayers, which the women listen to through a speaker. The youngest children play and wander throughout the center.

Perspective: What happens when tragedy strikes Muslims during Ramadan | Sarah Pulliam Bailey

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Muslims are supposed to face death with a sense of stoicism and not be overwhelmed with emotion, he said, because they are going to a better place with God.

A man prays near to where a van was driven at Muslims in Finsbury Park, North
London, Britain, June 19, 2017. [Photo/Agencies]
Times of Ahmad | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: The Washington Post
By Sarah Pulliam Bailey | June 20, 2018


News of two recent attacks on Muslims spread quickly as they unfolded within a 24-hour span. On Sunday, a teenage girl’s body was found in a pond near her mosque in Virginia. Another attack took place in London on Monday when a man drove a van into pedestrians outside a mosque.

Vigils for Nabra Hassanen, the teenager killed in Virginia, will be held in several cities this week, including New York, Philadelphia and Dallas. Fairfax County police said her killing was probably a “road rage incident,” although many Muslims, including her father, believe she was targeted because of her religion.

The attacks took place during Ramadan, a month considered holy by Muslims, who are expected to fast from dawn to sunset, pray, recite the Koran and give charitably.

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