Written evidence submitted to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Islamophobia By Islam Surveyed December 2013

Missing Pieces – 1.0 Introduction

Missing Pieces – 2.0 Conclusions

Missing Pieces – 3.0 UK-Based Media
This section lists over 350 news reports and articles covering Islam and Muslims published by UK-based media between January and November 2013. Links to all the complete original news reports and articles are given.

Missing Pieces – 4.0 English Media Outside the UK
This section does the same for English language media based outside the UK. It has over 320 news reports and articles over the same period.

Missing Pieces – 5.0 The Media
This lists the media covered in sections 3.0 and 4.0 and summarises the number of news reports and articles from each source

Missing Pieces – 1.0 Introduction

A great many words are written about the media’s coverage of Islam and Muslims and how it causes “Islamophobia”.

A recent example is a submission to the APPG, “Islamophobia in the Media: evidence to the APPG on Islamophobia, 16 October 2013”.

It gives a high level view quoting lots of statistics but offers only a handful of examples (13) of what the media is actually reporting and saying and how it is saying it.

The examples are highly selective, only “indicative” of a sector of the press well known for its sensational headlines.

And, we are told “an overwhelmingly negative picture where threat, otherness, fear and danger posed or caused by Muslims and Islam underpins a considerable majority of the media’s coverage.”

The aim of this submission is to provide the missing pieces.

What exactly are the media saying about Islam and Muslims and how are they saying it?

It excludes coverage of the wars in Afghanistan and Syria, other ongoing conflicts largely involving Muslims, the Israeli-Palestinian problem, and terrorism (Note 1), with a few exceptions that throw some light on the “Islamophobia” problem. It also excludes strongly cultural issues such as FGM and honour killings.

It is concerned with: Attitudes, Beliefs and Practices, Education and Knowledge, Freedom of Religion, Freedom of Speech, Halal, Integration, Multiculturalism, Islamophobia, Organisations, Reform, the pronouncements of Islamic Scholars, Sharia, Violence and Islam, Women and Islam.

Missing Pieces – 2.0 Conclusions

(1) The Same Picture, Left, Right and Centre

The media coverage of Islam and Muslims showing the religion and its followers in a very negative light is common to all media.

It is not just the “sensational” press, the Daily Star, The Sun, the Daily Express, the 13 examples so very prominently displayed in “Islamophobia in the Media: evidence to the APPG on Islamophobia, 16 October 2013.”

Media well known for publishing what Muslims themselves have to say and presenting what they see as positive aspects of Islam, are as bad (or as good) as the rest in bearing “negative” news.

They include The Guardian (Note 2), The Independent, the BBC (Note 3), and The Huffington Post UK (Note 4).

(2) Not Just the UK

Similar negative coverage is found in the non-British English language media around the world.

(3) What Readers Think

Readers’ comments are now a much bigger part of the published picture. Most publications have an electronic version enabling readers to relate their experiences, provide information and express their views.

The extracts shown of typical and high scoring readers’ comments reinforce the negative picture. Most of them are by educated readers of the quality press (Note 2).

(4) The Islamophobia analysis “industry” is not helping

Authors of reports such as “Islamophobia in the Media: evidence to the APPG on Islamophobia, 16 October 2013” continually complain about this negative coverage saying, for example, it is:

” …. likely to provoke and increase feelings of insecurity, suspicion and anxiety amongst non-Muslims. Likely to provoke feelings of insecurity, vulnerability and alienation amongst Muslims, and in this way to weaken the Government’s measures to reduce and prevent extremism”.

One suspects the solution they have in mind is along the lines the message is so bad the best thing is to shoot the messenger, or at least make him shut up.

They fail to address the fact the overwhelming majority of news stories and articles are an accurate and fair reflection of reality.(5)

And, there is no evidence to suggest large numbers of favourable stories about Islam and Muslims are being ignored. (6)

The simple truth is a great many Muslims inspired by Islam as they see it do and say a great number of things from the trivial to the very important that annoy, puzzle or repulse most non-Muslims and consequently they are reported by the media.

It is all there: ● gender inequality ● segregation ● subversion of English law by sharia tribunals ● special treatment (veils (Note 2), more religious school holidays, halal slaughter, separate halal menus, prayer rooms, beards for schoolboys, etc.) ● under-age marriage ● polygamy ● homophobia ● cruel and violent punishments ● blood money ● supremacism ● suppression of free speech (often by the threat of violence) ● punishment including death for apostasy ● and, persecution of religious minorities ….

The problem has very little to do with the media and a lot to do with Islam and Muslims.


Note (1) Proportion of News to do with Terrorism
According to the Cardiff School of Journalism study “The Representation of British Muslims in the National Print News Media 2000-2008” the prominence of “news hooks” in 2008 was as follows:

Terrorism 27%, Other 73%

Other included: religious cultural issues 32%, Muslim extremism 10%, politics & public affairs 8%, immigration & asylum 2%, violence & attacks against Muslims 1%, Islamophobia 1%, social unrest & community relations 2%, other 16%

Note (2) The Guardian and the views of its readers
In fact, articles on contentious issues by Muslims or in defence of the Islamic viewpoint in The Guardian regularly get a large majority of hostile or critical responses from Guardian readers.

See “What Guardian Readers Think of the Muslim Veil”

Note (3) The BBC
The care the BBC takes is shown in its headline “Girl, 14, pregnant after Pakistan forced marriage, judge says” for a news report published on the 5 November.

The Daily Star had no qualms about mentioning Muslims and ran with the headline “British Muslim girl of aged 14 was forced to marry her husband at gunpoint”.

This headline possibly better reflects reality (and the public interest) following the ITV investigation that found an alarming number of British imams were willing to perform marriage ceremonies for underage Muslim girls. See reports 6-9 October.

Note (4) The Huffington Post UK
A Muslim journalist, Mehdi Hasan, is the political director of The Huffington Post UK. He has expressed strong Islamic views that others have found offensive, likening non-believers to cattle, for example.

Dr Chris Allen, the author of “Islamophobia in the Media: evidence to the APPG on Islamophobia, 16 October 2013”, blogs for The Huffington Post UK.

Note (5) The Leveson Report
Lord Leveson says “…. it is important that stories …. are accurate, and not calculated to exacerbate community divisions or increase resentment. ….. the majority of the Press appear to discharge this responsibility with care…. [Emphasis added]

Note (6) Even some Muslims ….
Some negative stories have a positive side. There are a few, only a few, modern-minded Muslims who are prepared speak out against backward Islamic practices. This is nicely represented by an item in The Independent, 6 November.

“Stop dithering and ban the burka – When will the British establishment bite the bullet and ban the burka? …. For too long a misinformed British public has been swayed by …. Muslim apologists …. that female face-masking is a religious requirement, a free personal choice, or a woman’s prerogative to maintain public anonymity. None of these spurious assertions pass critical scrutiny.”

This is part of a letter from Dr T Hargey, Director of the Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford. He will now, of course, be fiercely criticised by the backward looking Muslim establishment, the Islamists, and the Muslim apologists.

Dr Hargey should have written to The Sun! He might have got the support and publicity he deserves

Missing Pieces – 3.0 UK-Based Media

This section lists over 350 news reports and articles covering Islam and Muslims published by UK-based media between January and November 2013.

In each case you have the title, a brief representative or telling extract, the name of the publication, and the publication date. Where available and especially relevant a typical comment by a reader is given.

Police called to school protest over religious workshop
The 45-strong rally followed uproar last week when parents were warned their children would have a racial discrimination note recorded against them if they failed to attend the workshop.
Express & Star, 28 November Read more

Thousands of bottles of beer smashed in sharia crackdown in Nigeria
About 240,000 bottles of beer have been shattered by an earthmover …. Alcohol is banned under sharia law, imposed in the city in 2001, but authorities had turned a blind eye to its consumption in hotels and the Sabon Gari Christian quarter.
The Guardian, 28 November Read more

Stoning will not be brought back, says Afghan president
Afghanistan’s government has backed away from a proposal to reintroduce public stoning as a punishment for adultery after the leak of a draft law stirred up a storm of international condemnation.
The Guardian, 28 November Read more

British universities shouldn’t condone this kind of gender segregation
…. Muslim speakers demand segregation to make a very public point about their belief in women’s “separate” role in the universe, one step behind a man, even in a place of learning.
[A READER’S COMMENT] You hit the nail on the head: “Muslim speakers demand segregation to make a very public point about their belief in women’s “separate” role in the universe…” My family left the country of my birth to escape oppressive illiberalism only to find that it’s followed us here.
The Guardian, 26 November Read more

Segregating men and women at university events won’t lead to equality
…. By allowing gender segregation, Universities UK are complicit in the gender inequality being perpetuated by [student Islamic Societies].
[A READER’S COMMENT] That a British University should even consider asking audiences to segregate themselves on a gender basis is apalling. …. Is this what taxpayer subsidized education has come to?
[ANOTHER COMMENT] ‘Separate but equal’ used to segregate Jewish students in 1930’s Poland. ‘Separate but equal’ used to segregate blacks in pre 1960s USA. ‘Separate but equal’ used to segregate women in 21st century British universities. Unbelievable!
The Independent, 25 November Read more

Public stoning consideration is latest setback for Afghan women’s rights
The sentence for married adulterers, along with flogging for unmarried offenders, appears in a draft revision of the country’s penal code being drawn up by the ministry of justice.
The Guardian, 25 November Read more

Political and Legal Status of Apostates in Islam
…. Twenty-seven (27) countries consider apostasy from Islam illegal and a prosecutable offence. …. punishments vary from fines, imprisonment, flogging and exclusion from civil or family rights. In eleven (11) countries …. apostasy is punishable by the death penalty.
Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain, 25 November Read more

School Backtracks After Islam Workshop ‘Racial Discrimination’ Warning
…. parents were told they must send their children to a workshop on Islam or have them labelled racist in their school file. …. Parents branded the letter “ludicrous.”
— The Huffington Post UK, 23 November Read more

‘You are a woman, you can’t sit here’
…. The guidelines of Universities UK are a shocking display of what happens when religious privilege is allowed to trump other considerations of equality and basic human rights. As long as religious beliefs are “genuinely-held”, they will override any other principle.
— Harry’s Place, 23 November Read more

Terror-link group met in parliament
…. one of the Government’s police and crime commissioners will this week speak on the same platform as a man who has justified the killing of British troops and called for democracy to be replaced by Sharia.
— The Telegraph, 23 November Read more

We can turn round Derby crisis Al-Madinah School, says trust chief
After being threatened with closure because of its poor academic standards and dire financial situation …. The school’s three founding trustees – Shazia Parveen, Shahban Rehmat and Ziad Amjad – have said they will step down.
[A READER’S COMMENT] The problem with allowing an Islamic/Muslim based school is the obvious visible and social separation of their children!
[ANOTHER COMMENT] Its NOT a school, it’s an excuse for brain washing children with a barbaric so called “religion” at taxpayers expense.
— Derby Telegraph, 23 November Read more

Schools minister intervenes in failing Al-Madinah
Al-Madinah, an Islamic faith school in Derby …. placed in special measures after failing inspections by Ofsted. …. investigated over financial and budget issues:
— The Guardian, 22 November Read more

Children of 8 are ‘racist’ if they miss Islam trip: School’s threatening letter to parents is met with outrage
They were sent a letter warning that the primary school pupils would have a ‘racial discrimination note’ put on their records if they did not go.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Seems to me this type of things is being forced upon us from every direction. It can and will result in resentment
[ANOTHER COMMENT] Would non-Christians have received such a letter if it had been a Christian outing?
— Daily Mail, 22 November Read more

Universities ‘can segregate men and women for debates’
Universities can segregate students during debates as long as the women are not forced to sit behind the men, university leaders have said.
[A READER’S COMMENT] This is ridiculous, stop pandering to moslem action groups! If people want to be segregated by sex let them go and study in a country where that is the norm.
[ANOTHER COMMENT] I wonder if they would be as accommodating to a member of the BNP speaking at a university who wanted everyone segregated based on colour. Then again, the only people allowed to express ‘offensive views’ seem to be Islamist preachers. Whoever wrote these guidelines truly is the most useful of idiots.
— The Telegraph, 22 November Read more

Freedom of speech is not an ‘absolute’, university leaders warn
…. there were 180 cases of radical preachers speaking at university events in the year up to March 2013. …. In a recent case, a speaker …. insisted the audience be segregated before he agreed to speak.
…. research showed that in a quarter of the 180 cases segregated seating for men and women was promoted.
— The Independent, 22 November Read more

British Muslims Should Stand Up and Say It: There Is Nothing Islamic About Child Marriage
…. Child, or underage, marriage is very much a part of British society. And the inconvenient truth is that it is Muslims – not Christians, Jews or Hindus – who are responsible for much of it.
[A READER’S COMMENT] …. a large faction …. of his fellow believers sweep grossly unjust and inhumane practices under the carpet – and then pull the race/colour/freedom of religion card out whenever the rest of us object!
— The Huffington Post UK, 21 November Read more

Labelling the Halal meat market for consumers
Dr Mohammad Naseem …. in the Birmingham Central Mosque explained to me that for him Halal meat should not be stunned before slaughter. It may be an uncomfortable idea for many but for him it’s non-negotiable.
— BBC, 21 November Read more

Eleven more airports, including Luton and Stansted, to use full-body scanners
…. Some Muslim passengers refused to walk through the full-body scanners on religious grounds.
— The Guardian, 21 November Read more

UKIP Peer Warns Of Muslim ‘Dark Side’
…. we see large and growing Muslim communities which are set against integration with the rest of us; we see thousands of home-grown potential terrorists; we see Sharia law running de facto in our land.
— The Huffington Post UK, 20 November Read more

Bolton Council apologises after pork product is served to Muslim youngsters in school dessert
…. a pork product was discovered in chocolate mousse being served to Muslim youngsters as part of their school dinner. Bolton Council’s school meals service …. is now working closely with Bolton Council of Mosques and an investigation is under way.
— The Bolton News, 19 November Read more

Advice on respectful treatment of Muslims arrested in Torquay
ADVICE has been given to Torquay Police on the best way to treat Muslims held in custody. …. Dr Ali gave advice about issues including halal food, food preparation, the Koran, washing before prayers, and prayer mats.
[A READER’S COMMENT] We need to treat everyone equally regardless of who they are. Unfortunately British liberal society seems to think some people are more equal than others.
— Herald Express, 18 November Read more

The Saudis spread their ideas around the world
The issue therefore is not just that Christians are being punished because of anger at the West. It is the specific application of Islamic law, and most centrally its ideas about freedom of religion.
… Much of the intolerance in Pakistan stems from the influence of the Saudis, who are trying to reshape Islam in their image, and are helped by Westerners because of their vast reserves of money.
The Spectator, 15 November Read more

Call to reinstate Hagia Sophia as mosque
One of Turkey’s most senior ministers has called for Istanbul’s ancient Ayasofya museum to be converted back to being a mosque.
…. Ayasofya, designed as a Christian basilica in the sixth century …. is dubbed a “unique architectural masterpiece” by Unesco and is one of Istanbul’s most visited tourist attractions.
— Financial Times, 15 November Read more

Protests as ‘child marriage’ imam back at Birmingham mosque
…. was immediately suspended by the mosque but the Mail has discovered he was allowed to return to work last Monday. …. the decision has divided worshippers, with one mosque member claiming the ‘unjustifiable’ return had caused bad feeling.
Birmingham Mail, 15 November Read more

Egypt’s women refuse to be intimidated
…. restrictions on polygamy were lifted; a reduction of the marriage age was proposed; women’s right to seek divorce was limited. This reflected the Brotherhood’s patriarchal attitude to gender roles and family structures.
The Guardian, 15 November Read more

Christian minorities ‘endangered’ in Middle East
Baroness Warsi said Christians were in danger of being driven out of countries, such as Syria and Iraq, where the religion first took root. …. politicians had a duty to speak out against persecution and appeal for religious tolerance.
— BBC, 15 November Read more

Debate on Interfaith at the House of Lords
…. He began with moral equivalence: “There are Christians who also believe that gays should be killed”. Clearly, this is a pretty disingenuous claim as no prominent or mainstream Christian organisation says any such thing.
…. Unquestioning ‘respect’ and engagement is a privilege uniquely afforded to Muslim groups.
Harry’s Place, 13 November Read more

Egypt is the worst Arab country for women
Increasingly commonplace sexual violence has combined with plummeting female representation in parliament and a growth in more extreme Islamic views to push the country to the bottom of the region for women’s rights.
The Independent, 12 November Read more

Greek Supreme Court places sharia law above civil law
The last will and testament of a Muslim man, which was prepared according to Greek civil law, has been annulled in the Greek Supreme Court because it is not compliant with sharia law.
National Secular Society, 12 November Read more

Sharia Law: No Place in Europe
…. The application of sharia law to criminal cases leads to perpetrators escaping long prison sentences while paying the victims large sums in compensation. In return, the victims must make sure that their testimony in German courts does not lead to a conviction.
…. mosques in the Netherlands are implementing sharia rules of marriage, divorce, inheritance, child custody and parental authority, among others.
Lawyers’ Secular Society, 11 November Read more

Are Muslims Doing Enough? – Sunday Morning Live
…. she was subject to threats and pressure in response to her reasoned debate on subjects such as hijab. She saw a problem now with a growing idea that you could never belong to the societies in which you live.
BBC, 11 November Read more

West must stop appeasing efforts to ban criticism of Islam
…. a concerted effort has been made by Islamic organizations, particularly the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) to prevent or limit criticism of Islam and the Prophet.
The Commentator, 11 November Read more

Inspiration or danger? Private schools in Pakistan ban Malala Yousafzai’s book
The federation …. said it believed the book was not entirely respectful of Islam. …. “Pakistan is an ideological country. That ideology is based on Islam…. In this book are many comments that are contrary to our ideology.”
The Independent, 10 November Read more

Why can’t we admit we’re scared of Islamism?
Bazrafkan is also the daughter of an Iranian family, and the Islamic Republic’s subjugation of women revolts her.
…. White Danes reported her to the police for writing that Muslim men abuse and murder their daughters, and adding for good measure that the ‘Koran is more immoral, deplorable and crazy than manuals of the two other global religions combined’.
The Spectator, 9 November Read more

Universities cancel Muslim cleric’s speaking tour over concerns about his anti-gay views?
A Muslim cleric who preaches that gay people are worse than animals is at the centre of a fierce “free speech” row after being invited to speak at universities across the country.
The Independent, 7 November Read more

The tragedy of child brides?
This week a court in Birmingham heard the case of a 14-year-old girl who became pregnant after she was taken to Pakistan against her will and forced to marry a 24-year-old man.
The Independent, 7 November Read more

Stop dithering and ban the burka?
When will the British establishment bite the bullet and ban the burka? …. For too long a misinformed British public has been swayed by moderate as well as militant Muslim apologists – including Baroness Warsi – that female face-masking is a religious requirement, a free personal choice, or a woman’s prerogative to maintain public anonymity.
None of these spurious assertions pass critical scrutiny.
The Independent, 6 November Read more

Nine uses for a burqa … that don’t involve bashing them?
Yes, the burqa-bashing season is upon us yet again.
[A READER’S COMMENT] The word patriarchy is used a lot in this paper, and is decried everywhere, yet when you get an actual concrete example of something which is a product of a real patriarchal system, as the burqa is, this paper runs to defend it?
The Guardian, 6 November Read more

Desperate oppression of women continues in MidEast?
…. The 2013 report is published by the Geneva based World Economic Forum. …. The region in the world that is worst and has least improved in these regards is the Middle East and North Africa. That region has closed only 59 percent of the overall gender gap. In the economic area, it has closed only 39 percent, and in political empowerment less than 7 percent.
The Commentator, 6 November Read more

For the Sake of Faith, Remove Face Veils?
…. The reason is simply that its effect is to impede the most basic forms of social intercourse, face to face communication.
A READER’S COMMENT] I too feel fortunate to live in a society which values tolerance and seeks to accommodate differences but there are limits. I have no problem with hijabs, turbans or skull caps etc, but covering the face is a step too far and it does cross a sort of red line.
The Huffington Post UK, 5 November Read more

Girl, 14, pregnant after Pakistan forced marriage, judge says?
A 14-year-old girl became pregnant after being taken to Pakistan by her father and forced to marry a man, a judge has said.
BBC, 5 November Read more

Muslim Girl, 14, In Forced Marriage: Judge ‘Powerless’ To Help
“The girl has given an account of the circumstances surrounding that marriage which are, frankly, harrowing,” said the judge.
Mr Justice Holman said the girl’s parents were Muslim and had emigrated from Pakistan to England. He said the girl’s father became a UK citizen more than 30 years ago.
The Huffington Post UK, 5 November Read more

Boris Johnson has questioned whether burqas should be allowed in British classrooms and courts, but stopped short of suggesting a ban altogether?
…. “I certainly think it’s a bit much to ask teachers or judges to deal with people who have their faces covered,” he told listeners to his regular phone-in on LBC.
ITV, 5 November Read more

Kuwaiti woman arrested in Saudi Arabia for driving her diabetic father to hospital?
…. the woman, who said her diabetic father could not drive and needed to be taken to hospital for treatment, is being held in custody pending an investigation.
The Independent, 4 November Read more

The rise and fall of a New York imam?
Although many of his conservative peers interpret the Koran to prohibit the use of music, Ali listens to rap and hangs out with hip-hop mogul. He even shrugs, disinterested, at cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
…. His teachings in general, about how to lead a modern Islamic life in a Western society, are infuriating some congregants.
BBC, 3 November Read more

Ban court witnesses from giving evidence in veil, says Ken Clarke?
“I don’t think a witness should be allowed to give evidence from behind a veil,” Clarke told BBC Radio 4’s The World This Weekend.
Clarke, a barrister and the coalition’s justice secretary until last year, said body language and facial expression were key factors in assessing the credibility of witnesses and defendants.
The Guardian, 3 November Read more

Muslim leader living in Britain sentenced to death by hanging for war crimes in Bangladesh?
A prominent Muslim leader living in Britain was today sentenced to death by hanging by a Bangladesh war crimes tribunal. …. The atrocities took place during Bangladesh’s war for independence from Pakistan when an estimated 3 million people were killed and 200,000 women were raped.
Daily Mail, 3 November Read more

Ban the veil in courts, say barristers
…. The survey of more than 400 barristers showed that 34 per cent supported the ban only when the defendant gave evidence, while [an additional] 57 per cent would go further …. and insist on the removal of the veil for the entire proceedings.
The Times, 2 November Read more

Word to the west: many Saudi women oppose lifting the driving ban
…. To my surprise, 134 (out of 170) respondents said female driving is not a necessity and that it opens the door for sexual harassment and encourages women to not wear the niqab under the pretext that they cannot see the road when driving. Some also fear that it gives husbands a chance to betray and agree with the assertion that it creates sedition in society.
[A READER’S COMMENT] How nice of a man to tell us that Saudi women prefer not to drive. That’s absolutely fine. Nobody was ever suggesting they should all be forced to drive. It would be nice if they were given the choice though, don’t you think?
The Guardian, 2 November Read more

Muslim women can be forced to show faces under new West Australian law
A new law requiring Muslim women to remove a burqa or niqab to prove their identity to West Australian police has been passed by the state’s parliament.
The Guardian, 1 November Read more

Muslim students pray in the rain after Queen Mary University denies them access to facilities
Hundreds of students …. in protest against what they claim is inadequate resources for Muslims on their Mile End campus.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Why should a university provide Muslims (or Catholics, Protestants, Jews) with a place to pray?
The Independent, 1 November Read more

October 2013

The Quiet Death of Moderate Islam
…. one can happily believe and even state publicly that the death penalty should apply to anyone who has sex outside of marriage, takes part in a homosexual act, insults the Prophet or leaves Islam without being ‘extreme’.
As long as one says “in an ideal Islamic society”.
Harry’s Place, 31 October Read more

Atheist student faces jail in Egypt
A 20-year-old Egyptian student has been arrested and could face up to six years in jail after he allegedly set up a Facebook page calling for atheism.
al-bab.com, 30 October Read more

Saudi blogger held for “blasphemy” released after almost two years in jail
Saudi journalist and blogger Hamza Kashgari, detained for 625 days on blasphemy charges, has been released.
Index on Censorship, 30 October Read more

Egyptian Student ‘Arrested Over Facebook Group Calling For Atheism’
The unnamed student who studies commerce at the Suez Canal University in Ismailia, was arrested after the university’s administration filed a complaint over his alleged activities.
The Huffington Post UK, 30 October Read more

Muslim taxi driver refused to give disabled woman’s dog lift during Ramadan
A MUSLIM taxi driver refused to give a lift to a disabled woman’s dog – because he thought it broke the rules of Ramadan.
East Grinstead Courier and Observer, 29 October Read more

Saudi Arabian women vow to keep up campaign against driving ban
Saudi women demanding the right to drive said they would keep up their campaign a day after government warnings and a heavy police presence thwarted their call for many women to get behind the wheel.
The Guardian, 27 October Read more

Drive to get Saudi women on the road: The kingdom holds the world’s only ban on female motorists
Officials had warned last week that any women who were caught driving yesterday would be arrested, and added that even online support could lead to arrests.
The Independent, 27 October Read more

Malaysia Bans Ke$ha From Kuala Lumpur Gig, Citing Muslim Sensitivities
The raunchy singer claims that authorities in the country refused to allow a Kuala Lumpur concert venue, because of fears her explicit lyrics would upset cultural sensitivities in the majority Muslim country.
…. Concert organizer Livescape said it received a letter about the decision on the eve of the show.
The Huffington Post UK, 26 October Read more

Muslims Leaders Call Derby Al-Madinah School ‘National Embarrassment’
Muslims leaders have called a failing Muslim free schol a “national embarrassment” but said the scandal had been misreported by the press.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Simple solution: All state schools should be secular [non religious] as has been the case in France for a century. Religious instruction is done by religious groups outside school. If parents are desperate to educate their children in a fully religious setting perhaps they should pay for it themselves.
I certainly do not believe the taxpayer should be subsidising religious indoctrination in any way, shape or form. That is not what state schools are for.
The Huffington Post UK, 26 October Read more

Saudi Arabia’s women hold day of action to change driving laws
[A READER’S COMMENT] …. Islam …. treats women as subservient to men and allows extreme interpretations to subjugate women in this way.
In many ways, Islam is where Christianity was in the Middle Ages. Hopefully, it won’t take as long it did with Christianity for the negative aspects of Islam to be overcome. Another 500 or so years of this nonsense would be hard to take.
The Guardian, 26 October Read more

Why the Beautiful Game Is Not So Beautiful – And More Islamophobic
…. a group of West Ham fans started hurling racial abuse at a small group of fellow Muslim football supporters who were praying in the concourse of the Sir Trevor Brooking Stand at Upton Park.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Anyone holding a prayer meeting in a football ground like this is likely to be ridiculed by the crowd. No religious group should be immune from being ridiculed for praying in public, if people want to laugh at them, that is their right. If they were jehovah’s witnesses would you be calling it racist bigotry? Or Scientologists or Hare Krishnas? Or Christians?
The Huffington Post UK, 25 October Read more

Four Christians sentenced to 80 lashes for drinking communion wine in Iran
The charges come as a United Nations report criticised the Islamic republic for persecuting non-Muslims.
Daily Mail, 25 October Read more

Four Christians sentenced to 80 lashes in Iran for drinking ceremonial wine during communion service
The harsh punishment comes amid a government crackdown on Iran’s so-called “house churches” – where worshippers gather in unofficial buildings to conduct Christian ceremonies.
The Independent, 25 October Read more

More than half of Brits want full face veil banned – 81% support ban in schools, courts or hospitals
…. more than half of the public believe women should not be allowed to wear the niqab in public – with 55 per cent backing an outright ban similar to the one in France. An even greater proportion, 81 per cent, say they support a ban on wearing the niqab in certain public places, such as schools, courts or hospitals.
Channel 4, 24 October Read more

Niqab Ban Supported By More Than Half Of Britons, According To Channel 4 News Poll
The poll asked whether the niqab should be banned in public places, such as courtrooms, schools and hospitals, with 81% saying they would support such a ban.
The Huffington Post UK, 24 October Read more

£350k taxpayers’ bill to defend Muslim pubes
It is hard to escape the conclusion that this was identified by all concerned as a politically and culturally-sensitive issue which nobody dared to end by an application of intellectual strength and common sense at an early stage.
Archbishop Cranmer, 24 October Read more

Dreadful at The Dorchester – Jalal ibn Saeed’s Assembly of Haters
…. let’s look at the record of four of the speakers on just one ghastly topic – why homosexuals should be executed.
Harry’s Place, 24 October Read more

American student scarred for life after brutal mob attack that was caught on CCTV three days after he arrived in the UK
One of the men grabbed the bottle that Mr Hounye was drinking from and smashed it against his face.
Daily Mail, 23 October Read more

Five face court charged with Selfridges ‘burka raid’
Flying Squad officers investigating two robberies conducted by men dressed in burkas arrested the suspects during dawn raids on addresses in north London yesterday.
Evening Standard, 23 October Read more

Yemeni ‘burns daughter to death for contacting fiance’
“The father committed this heinous crime on the pretext that his daughter had been keeping in contact with her fiance,” a police statement claimed.
BBC, 23 October Read more

Al-Madinah school head ‘left over threats’
He said the anonymous threats to his children were the final straw after an ongoing row with governors over the school’s funding.
BBC, 22 October Read more

Norway – what average Muslims think
Do you agree, he asks, with the punishments described in the Qur’an and the Sunnah, including stoning – do you think that they are the best punishments which could be applied? Everyone seemed to raise their hand very readily, and then also agreed that they were average Muslims, not radicals.
Harry’s Place, 22 October Read more

Taxpayers foot £350k legal bill for Muslim pubic hair battle
Taxpayers have been left with a legal bill of £350,000 after Muslim parents went to court to win right to shave their disabled daughter’s pubic hair.
The Telegraph, 22 October Read more

Stoning for adulterers and amputation for thieves: Sultan of Brunei announces stricter punishments under Shariah Penal Code
…. Awang said, however, that there should be no concerns that foreign travellers might end up avoiding Brunei after the law is implemented.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Are they trying to pretend that laws are always dispassionate and fair…. that the judicial process is infallible.. that witnesses never lie… that accusations are never false… that the police always use legitimate methods? Monstrous!
The Independent, 22 October Read more

Brunei to bring in tough new sharia law
“It is because of our need that Allah the Almighty, in all his generosity, has created laws for us, so that we can utilise them to obtain justice,” the 67-year-old was quoted as saying in local media.
[A READER’S COMMENT] As usual, it’ll be the poorest and weakest in society that are on the receiving end of whippings and amputations.
In other countries where amputations and executions are part of the legal system, you never hear of rich people having their hands cut off being beheaded for being witches.
The Guardian, 22 October Read more

Brunei introduces death by stoning under new Islamic laws
The Sultan of Brunei is to introduce a new code of sharia law which could see stonings introduced for adultery, amputations for thefts and public flogging for drinking alcohol.
The Telegraph, 22 October Read more

Egypt gunmen open fire on Coptic Christian wedding in Cairo
Three people, including a girl aged eight, died when gunmen on motorcycles opened fire on a wedding party outside a Coptic Christian church in Cairo.
BBC, 21 October Read more

British woman wrongly jailed in Dubai for having sex outside marriage lied about husband to avoid adultery charge
…. her lawyer told her to keep the fact she was already technically married, from six years ago, a secret as if the authorities knew she was married she could be charged with the more serious crime of adultery.
Daily Mail, 21 October Read more

Inmates Bullied Into Converting To Islam
The Prison Officers Association says it is symptomatic of the growing power and influence of Muslim gangs in prison.
Sky News, 20 October Read more

Britain’s jails facing ‘growing problem’ of forced conversion to Islam, officers warn
“About half a dozen of my clients have directly reported problems with being forced to convert … those that weren’t Muslim when they came in and those that were and have been forced to look at more radical ideas about their faith.”
The Independent, 20 October Read more

Papering over the cracks will not conceal school’s religious agenda
The school employs non-Muslim members of staff because, as yet, it cannot find sufficient qualified Muslim teachers. It now realises that, under the Academies Act, it does not have to employ qualified staff …. So, expect to see all teachers at Al-Madinah being Muslim, with female teachers wearing the head scarf.
Derby Telegraph, 19 October Read more

Prominent UK Muslims under police protection after al-Shabaab threats
…. a video by Somali-based terror group, al-Shabaab, …. singled out several British Muslims for having criticised jihadists in the aftermath of the Woolwich murder.
The Guardian, 17 October Read more

Leaving Islam behind is a scary prospect for Britain’s ex-Muslims
Unfortunately, due to to fears like the possibility of their families disowning them, they often end up falling into line publicly rather than admitting their true beliefs and doubts.
VICE UK, 17 October Read more

‘We have to respect Muslim faiths’: NYC mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio sides with rival Joe Lhota in debate over new public school religious holidays
‘Everybody would like to be recognized, but the truth of the matter is we need more school days, not less,’ the mayor said in 2009.
Daily Mail, 17 October Read more

The Malaysian ‘Allah’ ban is about putting minorities in their place
[A READER’S COMMENT] A major part of Islam, as well as other religions, is subordinating the status of others. Please don’t try to claim it’s nothing to do with religion.
The Guardian, 16 October Read more

In An Ideal World Gays Must Be Executed says Abdul Qadeer Baksh
…. gays would be executed in an ideal world – an Islamic state. He defends holding this view because this, sharia, would only happen if all the British people wanted (consented) to it.
Homo economicus’ Weblog, 12 October Read more

Lancashire school does U-turn after insisting two 14-year-old Muslim boys shave off beards to comply with dress
…. were sent home as the school maintained they had to be clean shaven. But the school has now performed a U-turn to comply with the European Convention of Human Rights, it explained.
Press Association, 11 October Read more

Eid means shutdown for Blackburn school
…. has decided to close for three days over Eid to prevent absences and children taking religious leave.
Lancashire Telegraph, 11 October Read more

Egypt’s Anti-Christian Sectarianism Is Another Sign Its Revolution Is a Battered Wreck
…. A new Amnesty report paints a bleak picture of Muslim mobs smashing their way into Coptic Christian churches in Upper Egypt this August.
The Huffington Post UK, 11 October Read more

Malala Yousafzai: Taliban threatens shops that sell teenage activist’s book
The Pakistan Taliban warned bookshops in Pakistan they would be attacked if they stock Malala Yousafzai’s memoir. …. Many accuse her of being an agent of the West for her campaign to get more girls into school and some even believe her life-threatening injuries were faked.
The Telegraph, 11 October Read more

Who Needs Tommy Robinson and the EDL, When Islamophobia Has Gone Mainstream?
[A READER’S COMMENT] When Islam demonstrates a commitment to peace and harmonious integration with the rest of the world perceptions might start to change. Islam is NOT a forward thinking, progressive or inclusive religion. It belongs in the middle ages.
The Huffington Post UK, 11 October Read more

If you make her willing, she will be willing: ITV’s Exposure on underage marriage
…. Several statements from mosques distancing themselves from the actions of various Imams were included in the programme. These became cumulatively unconvincing (though of course some of them at least may be sincere).
Harry’s Place, 10 October Read more

French journalist is prosecuted under 19th century press law for questioning Islam during a radio debate
He was summoned to court under strict press laws which date back to the 19th Century following a complaint from a pressure group called the Collective Against Islamophobia in France (CCIF).
Daily Mail, 9 October Read more

Koran ‘filled with threats to unbelievers’
Unbelievers are hated by Allah and the Koran is packed full of threats of hell against them. …. These passages are supported by the Hadith (traditions) and reflect the actions of the “prophet” as he subdued all in his path.
Belfast Telegraph, 9 October Read more

UK Imams agree to perform underage marriages
Religious leaders appeared willing to agree to perform underage marriages at some mosques across the UK, an ITV investigation has discovered.
ITV, 9 October Read more

Censoring atheists at LSE is a victory for oppression
[A READER’S COMMENT] “Religious hatred, particularly Islamophobia, is a real and corrosive influence in political and media discourse and it needs to be challenged and resisted”
…. until then you were making an important point about the freedom to offend sensibilities, however deeply held. With those weasel words you basically back track because now you’ve left a wide open debate about where valid criticism or satire becomes islamophobia?
The Guardian, 8 October Read more

Saudi Arabia: Teenagers who mock Islam ‘face therapy’
The education ministry has told headmasters to deal with reports of students making fun of Islam’s rituals or discussing subjects and ideas that violate Islamic law through “behavioural adjustment and life-skills sessions”, combined with “voluntary” community service, Arab News says.
BBC, 7 October Read more

Clerics at 18 mosques are caught agreeing to marry off girls of 14: Four imams investigated after undercover operation
Imams at 18 mosques agreed – including one who has advised the police. The preacher was prepared to arrange the nika despite being told that the ‘bride’ was being forced to move in with a man against her wishes.
Daily Mail, 7 October Read more

LSE Students Outrage After They Are Told To Cover Up ‘Offensive’ Jesus And Mohammed T-Shirts
Members of the LSESU Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Student Society at the university’s Fresher’s Fair were wearing t-shirts with the controversial ‘Jesus and Mo’ cartoons.
The Huffington Post UK, 7 October Read more

Malala was shot for ‘attacking Islam’, rather than for supporting girls’ education in Pakistan
“We didn’t target her for spreading education in her area, we targeted her for making jokes of Islam, and that was enough reason for attacking her”.
The Freethinker, 7 October Read more

Imams are caught out in TV sting on forced marriage
CAMPAIGNERS are warning that clerics caught on camera agreeing to conduct marriage ceremonies involving a 14-year-old girl in a new television documentary represent “the tip of the iceberg”.
Yorkshire Post, 7 October Read more

British imams willing to marry girls of 14 in secret
They include a senior Muslim leader who has advised police on community cohesion and publicly denounced forced marriage and an imam based at the country’s second largest mosque in Birmingham.
The Sunday Times, 6 October Read more

Row over parking congestion on streets near new mosque
When it was granted planning permission, the mosque had assured councillors that 95 per cent of its users walk to prayers and leave their cars at home and consent was given against a recommendation by officers to refuse it.
Bradford Telegraph and Argus, 5 October Read more

Jesus and Mohammed T-shirts banned: victory for the ‘sanctimonious little prigs’ of LSE’s student union
There’s a row going on at the London School of Economics (LSE) after two atheist students were banned from wearing a T-shirt which depicted the Prophet Mohammed and Jesus.
The Telegraph, 5 October Read more

Muslim parents’ concern over gelatine delays flu vaccine in schools
A programme to vaccinate schoolchildren against flu has been delayed in Glasgow after concerns from Muslim parents that it contains products derived from pork.
BBC, 4 October Read more

Flu vaccine scheme halted over fears of Muslim parents
…. after parents at Glendale Primary in Pollokshields – which has a large number of Muslim pupils who cannot consume or use pig products for religious reasons – became aware of the ingredients, complaints were made and the scheme was put on hold.
HeraldScotland, 4 October Read more

Two bearded teenagers banned from classes at Lancashire school for refusing to shave
Headteacher Xavier Bowers said boys had that situation explained to them and were told they must return from the summer clean shaven – and he insisted that the matter was one of dress code, not religion.
The Independent, 4 October Read more

Muslim boys told their beards breach school rules
Two Muslim schoolboys have been barred from classes because they will not shave off their beards. …. “There is nothing specifically written in the Qur’an about wearing a beard. It is a choice those boys are making. However inclusive we are, we have standards to maintain.”
The Guardian, 3 October Read more

Muslim supermarket workers win discrimination case against Tesco after bosses locked their prayer room and made them sign in and out
…. In 2008 managers agreed to set aside a security office at the distribution depot …. as a prayer room for Muslims. But in 2012 bosses set new restrictions on the use of the room which included keeping it locked when it was not in use.
Daily Mail, 3 October Read more

Muslim pupils, 14, banned from the classroom at Catholic school for refusing to shave off their beards after claiming their religion forbids it
But the boys’ families have said they are suffering discrimination because beards are a symbol of faith and their religion forbids them to shave.
Daily Mail, 3 October Read more

UK’s most senior judge ducks question on whether Muslim barristers can wear veils
The president of the Supreme Court Lord Neuberger said it was an “interesting” question but that he would tackle the issue when it arose.
Daily Express, 2 October Read more

Muslim Face Veil Question ‘Ducked’ By UK’s Top Judge
Would a face veil affect a barrister’s ability to do her job?
Yes 81.9%
No 18.1%
— The Huffington Post UK, 2 October Read more

Devoted teacher reveals why she quit a Muslim school after being told THIS business suit was indecent
For nearly 20 years, she has taught history, geography and religious studies in schools throughout the East Midlands city. In all that time, there has never been one word of complaint against her from head teachers, parents or pupils.
Daily Mail, 2 October Read more

September 2013

Muslim Women Don’t Care If You Feel Uncomfortable
[A READER’S COMMENT] “Muslim Women Don’t Care If You Feel Uncomfortable” yeah thanks Shaheen, we know.
You don’t care if we are uncomfortable but want to express your anger and frustration when “ignorant people” see the niqab as a tool of women’s oppression (Pot/kettle). Well you won’t like me then because that is exactly as I see it.
…. There is no requirement in Islam to cover your face and in Britain people who cover their faces are distrusted. Every news item about Islam or Muslims seems to be negative, do you care about that?
The Huffington Post UK, 30 September Read more

Heard the one about the Saudi cleric who said driving damages ovaries?
If social conservatives want to control their populations, and women in particular, then they are going to continue to look ridiculous. We can all play our part by pointing and laughing at them.
The Guardian, 30 September Read more

The state school where girls are forced to wear hijabs in classrooms AND outside school
Under the rules, pupils must ‘wear the hijab outside the school and home, recite the Koran at a least once a week’ and not have stationery which shows ‘unIslamic images’ like pictures of pop stars.
Daily Mail, 29 September Read more

Special report: The punishment was death by stoning. The crime? Having a mobile phone
Stoning is legal or practised in at least 15 countries or regions. And campaigners fear this barbaric form of execution may be on the rise, particularly in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq.
The Independent, 29 September Read more

Pupils ordered to wear hijab out of school
A STATE-FUNDED school in Blackburn has become the first to force its pupils to wear a hijab both in and out of class.
The Lancashire school is the flagship of the Tauheedul charitable trust, an organisation seeking to open a network of 12 Muslim free schools across the country. Ministers have approved three such schools — two in Blackburn and one in Hackney, east London, which opened this month.
The Sunday Times, 29 September Read more

I’m sorry, but we have to talk about the barbarism of modern Islamist terrorism
…. Time and again, one reads about Islamist attacks that seem to defy not only the most basic of humanity’s moral strictures but also political and even guerrilla logic. Consider the hundreds of suicide attacks that have taken place in Iraq in recent years, a great number of them against ordinary Iraqis, often children.
The Telegraph, 28 September Read more

Devout Muslim Jubel Miah battered wife and forced her to wear niqab
Burnley Magistrates’ Court heard how the wife, who has not been named, agreed to wear the full face veil because she believed he would stop making her life a misery.
— The Telegraph, 27 September Read more

Tony Blair Blasts ‘Insidious And Venomous’ Islamist Ideology
…. the former prime minister …. said Islamist ideology had created an enemy that was “insidious and venomous, but also difficult to beat”.
The Huffington Post UK, 26 September Read more

Teacher: I quit Derby school over Muslim dress code
She said: “It wasn’t until an induction session, just before the school opened, that female non-Muslim staff were told they must wear a head covering, which was not made clear at any time during my interview for the job or was part of any contract.
Derby Telegraph, 26 September Read more

Quarter of young British people ‘do not trust Muslims’
Of the 1,000 young people questioned, 28% said Britain would be better off with fewer Muslims, while 44% said Muslims did not share the same values as the rest of the population.
BBC, 25 September Read more

Teacher ‘forced out of school’ for failure to wear Muslim hijab
She claimed that the school had issued staff with a handbook that told female staff to cover their entire body — with the exception of hands, face and feet — and not to wear “symbols of other faiths”.
The Telegraph, 24 September Read more

Lessons from the Peshawar church attack: appeasing Islamism leads to more terrorism
The bombing …. potentially represents a new and more deadly stage in Islamist terrorism, and also illustrates the likely results of appeasing Islamism.
ConservativeHome, 24 September Read more

Pakistan church bomb: Christians mourn 85 killed in Peshawar suicide attack
“Everyone is ignoring the growing danger to Christians in Muslim-majority countries. The European countries don’t give a damn about us.”
The Guardian, 24 September Read more

Veils, segregated schools and why we risk sowing the seeds of Islamic terror in Britain
…. if the British authorities continue to allow the Islamic hardliners to have their way in the name of choice when it comes to segregating boys from girls in schools, or sharia courts, or insisting that women should be allowed to wear veils in all circumstances, then those hardliners will feel they are pushing at an open door.
Daily Mail, 23 September Read more

The Women in Afghanistan: In the News for the Wrong Reasons
…. they represent just the tip of a vast iceberg of violence against women in Afghanistan. According to one study, 87% of Afghan women have experienced violence of at least one form (many suffering multiple types).
The Huffington Post UK, 23 September Read more

Peshawar horror as Muslims massacre and maim Christians
Two Muslim suicide bombers entered All Saints Anglican Church in Peshawar, and slaughtered around 80 Christians and maimed many more as they worshipped God and praised Jesus. It was a jihadi bloodbath of butchery and carnage.
Archbishop Cranmer, 23 September Read more

No, Mr Cameron. The Kenyan massacre is all about Islamism
I don’t think any sensible person would argue that the perpetrators represent all Muslims. But it seems strange to say that a separation of people — and massacre of them — based solely on their religious identity can be said to have nothing to do with religion.
The Spectator, 23 September Read more

Muslim husbands must hate non-Muslim wives
…. When an attendee asked Burhami how Islam can allow a Muslim man to marry a non-Muslim woman and yet expect him to hate her, the sheikh responded as follows:
“Where’s the objection? Do all men love their wives? How many married couples live together despite disagreements and problems?
The Commentator, 22 September Read more

Suicide bombers kill dozens of Christians in Pakistan. NOW will the world wake up to the Islamist war against Christianity?
Can we go easy on the phrase “religion of peace” today? …. These faithful worshippers are the victims, first and foremost, of Islamic fanatics whose psychotic creed is held by a small minority of the world’s Muslims.
The Telegraph, 22 September Read more

Muslim school banned pupils from singing and reading fairy tales as hardliners took control and ousted headmaster and deputy
Britain’s first Muslim free school is controlled by religious hardliners who ban children from singing or reading fairy tales and force staff to wear headscarves – according to the former head teacher and deputy who claim they were forced to leave.
Daily Mail, 22 September Read more

Lord Tebbit Warns Of Immigrants Who ‘Recreate Their Country’ In The UK
…. some were building “separate societies” …. immigrants from the “third world” had no intention of integrating. Lord Tebbit also supported a ban on women wearing a full face veil in certain cases where it is essential to see people’s faces.
The Huffington Post UK, 22 September Read more

Let’s face it – the niqab is ridiculous, and the ideology behind it weird
When I see someone wearing it, I’m torn between laughing at the absurdity and irritation with the ideology it represents.
In secular countries, the notion that women have to cover their faces whenever they leave the house is rightly seen as weird, and runs counter to the principle of gender equality.
The Independent, 22 September Read more

Let’s not go ‘wobbly’ over the veil
The lack of muscle in Western liberal values is permitting a fundamentalist strain of Islam to gain a foothold in spheres that should be protected, such as schooling and childhood.
The Telegraph, 21 September Read more

Christianity becoming extinct in its birthplace, says Holland
‘In terms of the sheer scale of the hatreds and sectarian rivalries, we are witnessing something on the scale of horror of the European Thirty Years War,’ said Holland.
‘It is the climax of a process grinding its way through the twentieth century – the effective extinction of Christianity from its birthplace.’
Lapido Media, 20 September Read more

The veil: Britain’s verdict
SUN readers overwhelmingly agree with our plan for vital reforms on Muslim women wearing full-face veils.
In an online poll, 87 PER CENT agreed with the four proposals for niqabs or burkas we revealed yesterday.
— 87% back The Sun’s 4-point plan
— 61% want full-face veils banned
— Work axe could breach European law
The Sun, 18 September Read more

London schools forcing pupils to wear burkas, with ‘appropriate punishments for incorrect uniform’
The Madani Girls School in Whitechapel and the Ayesha Siddiqa Girls School in Southall require all students to dress in Islamic clothing.
Evening Standard, 18 September Read more

As judge orders woman to uncover face, The Sun demands vital reforms:

1) BAN veils in school, courts and hospitals
2) BAN them in airports, banks and secure areas
3) LET employer decide if ok in the workplace
4) BUT freedom to wear them in the street
BRITISH justice must be transparent. And religious belief cannot trump the law of the land.
The Sun, 17 September Read more

British-born Girls Who Wear the Niqab Aren’t That Different to Boys Who Flash Their Underwear
…. a penchant for anti-social fashion, an urge to pick out and put on clothes that express one’s disregard for the world and its inhabitants, that say a big fat “screw you” to other people.
The Huffington Post UK, 17 September Read more

We are all at the mercy of the activists who are driving these veil confrontations
We do need …. a parliamentary debate, to sort this out and clear up the confusion. We should have clear policies on what is and isn’t acceptable in schools (instead of leaving it to individual headteachers to take the heat) and what is and isn’t permissible in courts.
National Secular Society, 17 September Read more

Jack Straw: Muslim Face Veils Should Not Be Worn By Defendants In Court
But he said it did not go far enough, saying the woman’s face should be visible throughout the whole of the trial.
The Huffington Post UK, 17 September Read more

Leicestershire schools’ flu vaccine contains gelatine
At one school attended by Muslim pupils, head teacher Chris Hassall said it showed a lack of “sensitivity”.
BBC, 17 September Read more

More on the persecution of the Ahmadis in Pakistan
…. one of the speakers, said they would force Ahmadis to leave the city. “Their presence has polluted the city… their so-called places of worship are in fact centres of conspiracies against Muslims,” he said.
Harry’s Place, 16 September Read more

Head teachers against face veils in school
Veils that prevent teachers from seeing pupils’ facial expressions are “not suitable in school”, says head teachers’ leader Brian Lightman.
BBC, 16 September Read more

Spare us a ‘national debate’ on veils
…. The calm answer has to be to deny this as a national crisis. Individuals and institutions should be able to make their own decisions ad hoc.
[A READER’s COMMENT] “Individuals and institutions should be able to make their own decisions ad hoc.” Quite. But preferably without being called racist and taken to court.
[ANOTHER COMMENT] …. it is just another sign that some groups are not willing to integrate and it creates a divisive society. Veils are not part of British customs and society – there are certain things that should not be accepted and if some groups are not happy with that then they should not be living in a society they are not happy in.
The Guardian, 16 September Read more

Fully veiled women hinder progressive Islam
Many women, mothers in particular, have been brainwashed by proselytisers who want to spread conservative Islamic worship across Europe and North America. They are well funded by sources based in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states.
The Independent, 15 September Read more

No one has a human right to hide from justice behind a veil
…. It thus damns basic western values as ‘discrimination’ or ‘racism’, and turns the application of common sense into a prohibited activity.
It is, in short, a mad reversal of truth and justice that ultimately would destroy western society — a fate that risks being brought about not by Leftist rabble-rousers or Islamic fanatics, but by sanctimonious idiots …..
Daily Mail, 15 September Read more

My veil epiphany
Birmingham Metropolitan College …. bans Muslim women from wearing veils on the grounds of “security risk” – then changes its mind within days – we ask: what, precisely, were they imagining?
[A READER’s COMMENT] Children especally need to read faces to learn how to be human – the niqab-chained woman denies chidren that interaction. The niqab is against what makes us human – it is a denial of species interaction, a denial of nature. A forced cultural choice that denies what we are.
[ANOTHER COMMENT] Maybe they were thinking that in this country, so many aspects of non-verbal communication depend on seeing the other person’s facial expressions, and that hiding your face limits your ability to communicate. Maybe they were worried about exam fraud.
The Guardian, 15 September Read more

Christians flee Pakistani village after pastor accused of blasphemy
In a discussion with a Muslim man on August 24, Pastor Sattar Masih, 37, was accused of saying that Muhammad was a brutal man who killed innocent people.
…. “The clerics will decide if he blasphemed against our Prophet and in case he refused to appear before the clerics then we will kill him,” said his accuser, 18-year-old Ali Hassan.
Christian Today, 14 September Read more

Birmingham college forced into U-turn over Muslim veil ban following outcry
…. Current Department for Education guidance is that education establishments should act reasonably in accommodating religious requirements whilst safeguarding safety, security and effective teaching under the terms of the Human Rights Act.
The Independent, 13 September Read more

Birmingham Metropolitan College drops ban on Muslim face veils
[A READER’S COMMENT] Spineless. Just goes to show one rule for Muslims and one rule for everyone else. I say everyone should wear a balaclava who attend BMC and then see how they tables will turn.
When I was at college I had to wear an ID with a photo on it, everywhere I went I had to display the ID and staff would check to see if I was the same person as in my picture. How does anybody know who is under the veil. NON students could be taking student exams. NON students could be using the college services. Makes me sick.
Evening Standard, 13 September Read more

Moroccan Christian jailed for “shaking the faith of a Muslim”
A Moroccan Christian man has been jailed for two-and-a-half years and fined for evangelising.
National Secular Society, 12 September Read more

Muslim girl must go to swimming lessons – German court
Her parents had insisted that the girl, 13, not take part in swimming lessons at her school in Frankfurt. Some Muslim parents say that such lessons run contrary to Islamic principles of modesty.
BBC, 11 September Read more

Afghan Member of Parliament: “Execute Afghan Christian converts”
“Afghani citizens continue to convert to Christianity in India. Numerous Afghans have become Christians in India. This is an offense to Islamic Laws and according to the Quran they need to be executed.”
Christian Today, 9 September Read more

I’m Muslim but I don’t want to wear a hijab’: Sudanese woman’s defiance as she says she is ready to be flogged to leave her hair uncovered
Under Sudanese law her hair – and that of all women – is supposed to be covered with a ‘hijab’ but Hamed, 35, refuses.
Daily Mail, 9 September Read more

Acocks Green headteacher apologises after school feeds Muslim children bacon
[A READER’S COMMENT] How pathetic that someone over reacts to such a small mistake.
How many catholic children have been fed meat on a Friday at school over the years and it’s never made the Mail headlines. I bet many of those children …. ate something containing pork unknowingly before when eating processed foods such as pork gelatine in sweets etc that they have been given by other friends.
Birmingham Mail, 5 September Read more

Walmart assistant manager fired for mocking Muslim women in traditional dress on Facebook
As a caption to the photo, he wrote, ‘Halloween came early this year…. do they really have to f***in dress like that…your [sic] in my country … get that f***in s*** off!!!!!’
Daily Mail, 5 September Read more

Un-Islamic’ Miss World Contest Protested By Religious Hard-Liners In Indonesia
Shouting “Allah akbar” and “Go to hell Miss World”, more than 200 Islamic hard-liners staged a rally in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta on Tuesday to protest the forthcoming Miss World pageant due to be staged on the party island of Bali this weekend.
The Huffington Post UK, 3 September Read more

Islamic TV channels fined for hatemongering
“May Allah accept us wherever there is a need to kill a blasphemer. We are ready, and should be ready at all times, to kill a blasphemer.”
Several viewers immediately contacted Ofcom to complain, fearing that young people might be radicalised by the broadcast.
National Secular Society, 2 September Read more

August 2013

The Price Paid for Criticising Islam
The police in this case gave a strong message to Nahla, and to anyone else who might be tempted to commit the heinous offence of criticising or dismissing the religion of Islam: you’ll be punished, we won’t help, and you probably deserve it anyway.
Standpoint, 30 August Read more

Christian woman tells of moment she was beaten and locked up in Pakistan after ‘using Muslim women’s cup to drink water’
Mother-of-five Asia Bibi, 46, has spent the last four years languishing in a prison cell after being condemned to hang following a conviction for blasphemy.
She denied the charge of defiling the name of the prophet Mohammed during an argument with Muslim co-workers but was convicted following a trial.
Daily Mail, 29 August Read more

India: Fatwa ‘bans watching cartoons’
Religious leaders at the Darul Uloom seminary, in Deoband, declared that viewing animations – even those featuring comedy characters – was against the tenets of Islam.
BBC, 28 August Read more

‘Miss World is anti-Muslim,’ say Indonesian clerics ahead of Bali-set show
One of the country’s most influential Islamic groups wants next month’s Miss World cancelled, saying the exposure of skin by women in a competition violates Muslim teachings.
The Independent, 26 August Read more

How about a British Muslim carnival?
I’ve been to Carnival plenty of times, but the two months of rehearsals before this year’s festival have convinced me that British Muslims should have one too.
[A READER’S COMMENT] …. what will the women be allowed to wear? Will they be covered up? A really poor article.
[ANOTHER COMMENT] …. how about just having a carnival with everyone rather than splitting yourselves apart from wider society. …. how about we just stop with the divisive and counterproductive identity politics?
The Guardian, 26 August Read more

American pastor sentenced to eight years in Iranian prison for preaching Christianity in homes has appeal REJECTED
Saeed Abedini, a U.S. citizen who was born in Iran, has been held since September 2012 and was charged with ‘threatening the national security of Iran’. The 33-year-old father-of-two says he was in the country only to establish an orphanage and was not preaching Christianity.
Daily Mail, 26 August Read more

Islamic TV channel fined £85,000 by watchdog for broadcasting hate preacher’s saying it was ‘acceptable to murder anyone who disrespected Mohammed’
…. following a question from a Pakistani caller asking what the ‘punishment’ should be for those who disrespect the Prophet, his answer was that they ‘should be eliminated.’
Daily Mail, 22 August Read more

Islamic TV channel fined £85,000 for inciting violence
Noor TV …. breached broadcasting codes after a host said it was acceptable or even the duty of a Muslim to murder anyone who disrespected the Prophet Mohammed.
BBC, 21 August Read more

Muslim TV station broadcasts preacher ‘inciting’ murder – then fined just £85k
The regulator considered the remarks to be so inflammatory they could have inspired a repeat of the murder of Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gough, who was killed after Islamic clerics condemned his film which criticised the treatment of Muslim women.
Daily Express, 22 August Read more

Rupert Murdoch attacked for ‘irresponsible’ tweets about Muslims
Rupert Murdoch has backed comments from Britain’s chief rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, who says multiculturalism has “had its day”, with the media mogul adding that “societies have to integrate. Muslims find it hardest.”
The Guardian, 20 August Read more

Islam’s ability to empower is a magnet to black British youths
[A READER’S COMMENT] Because in these cults, sorry, religions, masculinity tends to resolve around your dominance of the woman and of non-believers. Being a warrior of God and all that.
[ANOTHER COMMENT] Some might consider the ’empowerment’ to be brainwashing.
The Guardian, 19 August Read more

Is it time to move on from multiculturalism?
In fact the fierce growth of religiosity, especially amongst many of the British born Muslims does give rise to some concern.
Howie’s Corner, 19 August Read more

Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks: Multiculturalism ‘Has Had Its Day’
“The real danger in a multicultural society is that every ethnic group and religious group becomes a pressure group, putting our people’s interest instead of the national interest.”
He however acknowledged the difficulties faced by British Muslim communities when they tried to assimilate.
The Huffington Post UK, 19 August Read more

Karzai: a legacy of failure on Afghan women’s rights?
Karzai has been turning a deaf ear to the pleadings of women’s rights activists, claiming that he had already faced a lot of embarrassment in defending women’s rights would no longer do anything in this regard.
openDemocracy, 19 August Read more

Islam and Women
Release women from the tribal, cultural and religious shackles of seventh century thinking and designated roles so they can get on with much needed change.
Homo economicus, 16 August Read more

Why we should oppose Islamic Sharia courts in Britain
…. These courts have been overlooked because, well – they are filled with eccentric religionists doing things among themselves.
This is idle. Women are being manipulated into endangering themselves, on the basis of ideas that most of them will have been raised to accept without question. Panorama alleged that kids have been ordered to be given up to violent husbands.
Liberal Conspiracy, 16 August Read more

Ex-Muslim woman threatened after anti-sharia comments on Channel 4’s 4Thoughts programme
Islamists have threatened Sudanese secular campaigner and Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain Spokesperson Nahla Mahmoud with death, calling her a Kafira and Murtada who has offended Islam and brought fitnah.
The threats have been reported to the police who have closed the case and advised that nothing could be done.
Religious Watch, 15 August Read more

City council candidate ‘too attractive’ for Iranian politics
A senior official was quoted in the Times to have explained the decision by saying: “We don’t want a catwalk model on the council.”
The Independent, 14 August Read more

Art as Humanity: Islamism and Music
…. an extreme Wahhabi group, is hosting a seminar on “entertainment and recreation in Islam.” The seminar will include a discussion on “how to advise someone to stop listening to music.”
Harry’s Place, 13 August Read more

Muslims told Facebook and Twitter accounts are un-Islamic by religious leader
Influential helplines for believers in the country have been flooded with calls asking if the popular social networks are compatible with Islam. But Muslims – and especially women – have been told by two leading Islamic scholars not to tweet.
The Daily Mirror, 12 August Read more

Afghanistan’s pioneering female MP seeks asylum as progress for women unravels
“Every day they are being killed, having their ears, noses cut,” said Ms Atmar, 40, speaking in a strong, clear voice, her eye make-up hidden behind dark glasses. “It is not just women in villages – it is also people like me.”
The Telegraph, 11 August Read more

‘Muslims peaked in the Dark Ages. But since then?’
Richard Dawkins has provoked anger after he claimed Muslims have contributed almost nothing to science since the Middle Ages.
Daily Mail, 10 August Read more

David Cameron Says High-Level Taskforce To Tackle Violence Against Muslims
[A READER’S COMMENT] ‘The taskforce, which was launched in May in response to the death of Fusilier Rigby’ it actually sickens me that the authorities response to that terrible murder is to focus on non-existent violence against Muslims, so they can continue securely in their false victimhood.
The Huffington Post UK, 10 August Read more

Danish Muslim leader who fuelled uproar about Prophet Muhammad cartoons now says he was WRONG and paper was RIGHT to print images
Dozens were killed in weeks of protests over the drawings that included violent attacks against Danish missions in Syria, Iran, Afghanistan and Lebanon.
Daily Mail, 10 August Read more

Ahmad Akkari, Danish Muslim: I was wrong to damn Muhammad cartoons
…. He said he’s still a practising Muslim but started doubting his fundamentalist beliefs after a 2007 trip to Lebanon, where he met Islamist leaders. “I was shocked. I realized what an oppressive mentality they have,” Akkari said.
…. Group spokesman Bilal H Assaad declined to comment on Akkari …. but said: “It is still not OK to publish drawings of Muhammad. We have not changed our position.”
The Guardian, 9 August Read more

Professor Richard Dawkins embroiled in Twitter row over Muslim comments
Prof Dawkins said: “All the world’s Muslims have fewer Nobel Prizes than Trinity College, Cambridge. They did great things in the Middle Ages, though.”
The Telegraph, 8 August Read more

‘This is a Muslim area and we don’t want to see that’: Mob pelts brothers-in-law wearing mankinis on sponsored walk with stones
…. they ended up being escorted by officers after they were attacked as they passed through the Sparkbrook area of the city, claiming police said they had offended local Muslims during Ramadan.
Daily Mail, 6 August Read more

Assyrian Christians told ‘If you want to come back, convert to Islam, or you will be killed’
“Whilst they allowed the dam’s original staff to remain in the city in order to continue its operation …. those who were not Sunni Muslim were not afforded the same privilege.
Christian Today, 5 August Read more

Kafka in Saudi Arabia – When human rights “violate” God’s law
I wrote recently about the Kafkaesque rules designed to restrict civil society activity in Bahrain, and I mentioned in passing that numerous Arab countries have similar laws.
al-bab.com, 2 August Read more

Parents of Muslim schoolgirl served gammon to emigrate
The youngster’s mother said they were leaving Britain for ‘a nice hot Muslim country where the kids know their identities as Muslims.’
The Telegraph, 2 August Read more

Family who got dinner lady fired after she accidentally served their child gammon are emigrating to Muslim country
The parents involved in the sacking of a school dinner lady who mistakenly served gammon to their daughter are to emigrate to a Muslim country.
Daily Mail, 1 August Read more

July 2013

Jail and flogging for Saudi who mocked religious extremists
The threat of execution appeared to be lifted in January when a court rejected the apostasy charge. Part of the evidence for Badawi’s supposed apostasy was that he had pressed the “Like” button on a Facebook page for Arab Christians.
al-bab.com, 31 July Read more

Cambridge dinner lady sacked for accidentally serving pork to Muslim pupil
A Cambridge primary school dinner lady has reportedly been sacked for accidentally serving pork to a Muslim pupil.
Cambridge News, 31 July Read more

Banned scholar’s texts in Woolwich Library
Dr Zakir Naik was banned in 2010 by the Home Secretary, who found his comments amounted to “unacceptable behaviour”. BBC London has now discovered three of his works in a public library. They contain controversial statements on women, Jews and terrorism.
BBC, 31 July Read more

Editor jailed for seven years and sentenced to 600 LASHES after starting ‘Free Saudi Liberals’ website
Raif Badawi, who started the ‘Free Saudi Liberals’ website to discuss the role of religion in Saudi Arabia, has been held since June 2012 on charges of cyber crime and disobeying his father – a crime in the conservative kingdom and top U.S. ally.
Daily Mail, 30 July Read more

Former Lancashire county leader is criticised over animal stunning motion
LANCASHIRE Council of Mosques has criticised former county leader Geoff Driver for imposing his animal welfare views on the Muslim community.
He spoke out after the Tory urged the giant authority to pre-stun all animals killed for meat in school meals.
Lancashire Telegraph, 29 July Read more

My sacking is an attack not just on journalism, but on Turkish democracy
The country needs freedom of expression and an independent media more than ever. But Erdogan is moving the country in the opposite direction: instead of enhancing media freedom, he and his media mogul allies are trying to suffocate it.
The Guardian, 29 July Read more

Bristol Jamia Mosque concerned about residents’ parking zone
Mosque chairperson Wazir Ali said people used the mosque throughout the day, all week and needed free parking. Mr Ali said people came to the mosque about seven times a day.
BBC, 28 July Read more

‘Save animals from distress’
A motion put forward at a meeting of Lancashire County Council has asked for only meat where the animal is stunned before being killed to be provided.
The move has caused ‘confusion’ among Muslim leaders in Lancashire, saying the practice could go against Halal rules.
Lancashire Evening Post, 26 July Read more

Girl’s online plea highlights plight of Yemen’s child brides
Sitting in a car, she speaks to the camera eloquently and forcefully, and tells of an alleged attempt by her parents to forcibly marry her to an older man. …. Nada’s story is genuine, and not uncommon. “This is not the first time this has happened, there have been far worse cases.”
BBC, 26 July Read more

Filipino women teachers urged to remove wearing veils in the classroom
An order was sent out by the Filipino Government instructing females who teach Arabic language and Islamic values to take off the religious niqab, which covers all of the face except the eyes.
Daily Mail, 25 July Read more

Tunisian politician Mohamed Brahmi assassinated
In February, the killing of prominent secular politician Chokri Belaid sparked mass protests and forced Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali to resign.
BBC, 25 July Read more

The shocking case of Marte Dalelv shows why we should be boycotting Dubai
If there’s one positive message to come out of the shocking case of Marte Dalelv, the Norwegian woman sentenced to prison in Dubai for the crime of unlawful sex with her alleged rapist, it’s the speed with which she was pardoned once the story became an international scandal at the weekend.
New Statesman, 23 July Read more

It’s fine to be a ‘new’ atheist, so long as you don’t object to Islam
A closer examination of the polemics, however, reveals why Dawkins and co have so upset the left. They have fallen foul of an important unspoken code: while Christianity may be cursed to the skies, criticism of Islam must be bookended with ‘religion of peace’ disclaimers or refrained from entirely.
The Spectator, 22 July Read more

‘Gay’ killings in Yemen – How big is the problem?
Hashim al-Asimi, a 20-year-old Yemeni, was heading home last Monday night when two men on a motorbike approached and shot him dead.
al-bab.com, 22 July Read more

Religious hardliners declare ‘jihad’ on Afghanistan’s TV talent shows
The programmes – modelled on Western favourites such as The Voice and Pop Idol – are hugely popular in a country with a young population and where television ownership has rocketed since the Taliban were ousted from Kabul in 2001.
The Telegraph, 21 July Read more

France veil row sparks Trappes unrest
The trouble was sparked by the arrest of a man whose wife was told by police on Thursday to remove an Islamic face-covering veil, banned in public.
BBC, 21 July Read more

Islamic finance sits awkwardly in a modern business school
The holder of a “halal” credit card pays a penalty on unpaid balances; this penalty is proportionate to the size of the balance, which makes it equivalent to interest.
Financial Times, 21 July Read more

An exceptional act of courage
In the Islamic Apartheid Republic of Iran, all religious minorities have been made into second class citizens.
Harry’s Place, 19 July Read more

Norwegian woman who reported being raped in Dubai is jailed for 16 months
Dubai police did not believe her, and instead took her passport and jailed her on suspicion of having had sex outside marriage.
Daily Mail, 17 July Read more

Taliban’s letter to Malala Yousafzai: this is why we tried to kill you
[A READER’S COMMENT] This letter should have simply read: Dear Malala, We tried to kill you because we are worthless misogynists who only understand violence and brutality and have such a blinkered view of the world that we can justify anything to ourselves including attacking little girls.
The Guardian, 17 July Read more

More Hatred and Extremism at the East London Mosque
…. the worst speakers are packed off to an associated local venue: usually The Water Lily for a few months. When the dust has settled, all promises to deal with the promotion of bigotry are forgotten, and the hate preachers are invited right back.
Harry’s Place, 15 July Read more

Muslims’ threats to stab pork eating UK prisoners
A prisoner at the jail said: “We are able to cook our own food here but if we attempt to cook pork in the communal kitchen it is deemed dangerous and even a threat to your life.
Daily Star, 14 July Read more

Muslim extremists kill our priests, burn our churches and kidnap our women: How Egypt’s Arab Spring dream descended into a nightmare of religious hatred
…. their frenzied attack on a lone, elderly Coptic priest was merciless. Father Matthew Awad had refused to reveal the whereabouts of a Muslim woman who had converted to Christianity. For this offence, he was assaulted, suffered death threats and barely escaped with his life.
Daily Mail, 13 July Read more

Women-only tennis sessions launched in Blackburn
The privacy of the courts makes them suitable for Muslim women, director Waqar Hussain said, although everybody is welcome.
Lancashire Telegraph, 9 July Read more

Bedford dad beat kids while forcing them to read Koran
A father punished his children by making them stand by a window reciting the Koran whilst he assaulted him, a jury was told today.
Bedfordshire news, 9 July Read more

Muslim TV station fined for allowing contributor to incite murder
Earlier this year Dr Malik said that he was dissatisfied with Ofcom’s ruling because there were cultural differences that Ofcom does not understand. He said that the regulator’s adjudicating committee should have members picked from the Muslim community.
National Secular Society, 5 July Read more

Ofcom fines TV channel DM Digital for broadcasting ‘duty to kill’ speech by Islamic scholar
A television channel has been hit with a hefty fine after broadcasting a speech by an Islamic scholar who said Muslims had “a duty to kill” anyone who insulted the prophet.
Communications watchdog Ofcom levied the fine, totalling £105,000, after it found DM Digital had twice breached the broadcasting code.
The Independent, 5 July Read more

DM Digital fined £105,000 over speech that condoned murder for blasphemy
A British TV channel has been fined £105,000 after it aired a live lecture by an Islamic scholar who allegedly advocated killing people who insult the prophet Muhammad. …. Ofcom’s English-language translation of his lecture suggest he also told viewers: “If someone takes a step in the love of the Prophet, then this is not terrorism.”
The Guardian, 5 July Read more

Muslim television channel fined after preacher of hate incited murder live on air
Earlier this year The Telegraph revealed how a number of British-based Islamic stations, including DM Digital, were inciting violence and murder on the airwaves.
The Telegraph, 5 July Read more

Iranian swimmer Elham Asghari: ‘My 20km record has been held hostage’
“Although I [stuck to] the full Islamic dress code and had swimming officials present at all times, [the authorities] said no matter how Islamic my swimming gear, it was unacceptable,” she told the Guardian. “They said the feminine features of my body were showing as I came out of water.
The Guardian, 5 July Read more

Iranian hardliners apoplectic over Shakira Confederations cup shot
…. in Iran, the few seconds of a woman with bare arms and a revealing top broadcast on national television for the first time prompted furious debate.
The Guardian, 3 July Read more

Beheading of Catholic priest in Syria highlights fears over arming opposition
In graphic video footage circulated online, Father Murad is seen tied up and pushed to the ground as a man slowly cuts his head off from behind with what appears to be a kitchen knife. Several dozen onlookers, including several children, chant Allah Akhbar (God is Great) as the beheading, which takes about a minute, takes place.
The Commentator, 3 July Read more

The boy killed for an off-hand remark about Muhammad – Sharia spreads in Syria
Mohammed Qataa’s mother wanders the streets of Aleppo looking into strangers’ faces as she tries to find her son’s killers.
She knows she would recognise them. She was looking right at them when, in front of a dumbstruck and terrified crowd, Mohammed was shot dead, accused of blasphemy.
BBC, 2 July Read more

The East London Mosque: A Place For Hate
Last week at the East London Mosque, you could have heard the Friday sermon being delivered by a hate preacher who has been banned from Sheffield Hallam university: Assim al-Hakeem. You can watch his sermon on the institution’s own Youtube channel.
Assim al-Hakeem teaches that apostates must be killed:
Harry’s Place, 1 July Read more

June 2013

Turkey – Erdogan Global Twitter Conspiracy
“There is now a scourge that is called Twitter. The best examples of lies can be found there. To me, social media is the worst menace to society.”
Homo economicus, 29 June Read more

Saudi Arabian Women’s Conference… With Not A Female In Sight
The picture features row upon row of men in traditional headscarves and white thobes. A single Westerner in a flannel shirt is the only person breaking up an otherwise uniform sea of what appear to be Arab men.
The Huffington Post UK, 28 June Read more

Why is the left so blinkered to Islamic extremism?
The result …. has been an anti-war movement working enthusiastically with those advocating the murder of homosexuals, a left-wing Mayor of London embracing a man who said Adolf Hitler had been sent by Allah to punish the Jews, and a group set up ostensibly to oppose fascism warmly welcoming religious fascists into its own ranks.
The Independent, 28 June Read more

Sunni vs Shia… in Gerrard’s Cross: New mosque highlights growing tensions among British Muslims
A leading mainstream Muslim group …. was concerned at the presence of “divisive and sectarian personalities” in Britain after it emerged that a controversial Saudi Sunni cleric, who was banned from entering Switzerland because of his extremist views and has frequently preached against “evil Shiites”, has been in London for the past week.
The Independent, 24 June Read more

Muslim prison numbers soar as staff warn of Islamic “gang culture” in jails
Prison officers have warned of Islamic “gang culture” in jails after figures showed the number of Muslim inmates has rocketed compared with other faiths.
The Daily Mirror, 23 June Read more

The dark side of the force
In his book The Lawful and Prohibited in Islam, [he] states that wife-beating is permissible after the failure of all other means of persuasion. In such circumstances, a husband may beat his wife “lightly with his hands, avoiding her face and other sensitive areas.”
Harry’s Place, 23 June Read more

Syria: ‘I saw rebels execute my boy for no more than a joke’
Nadia Umm Fuad watched her son being shot by Islamist rebels in Syria after the 14-year-old referred to the Prophet Mohammed as he joked with a customer at his coffee stall in Aleppo.
The Telegraph, 21 June Read more

Preacher Who Backs Wife-Beatings Let Into UK
…. He certainly takes a different view of what in the UK is considered domestic violence. He argues that a man “may use beatings to discipline his wife”, but he says, “he must beat her lightly”.
Sky News, 20 June Read more

Afghan women’s rights under threat
Efforts by women’s rights activists and parliamentarians to ensure the 2009 Evaw law – signed as a decree by president Hamed Karzai but not yet ratified by parliament – is passed were thwarted by conservatives objecting that it was “un-Islamic”.
The Guardian, 20 June Read more

Belief that honour killings are ‘justified’ still prevalent among Jordan’s next generation
A study into the attitude of teenagers in Jordan’s capital city of Amman reveals that almost half of boys and one in five girls believe that killing a daughter, sister or wife who has ‘dishonoured’ or shamed the family is justified. A third of all teenagers involved in the research advocated honour killing.
University of Cambridge, 20 June Read more

Vets in animal welfare call over halal meat
VETS have called for stricter labelling of halal and kosher meat and immediate post-slaughter stunning of animals being prepared for the religious markets in a bid to improve welfare conditions.
HeraldScotland, 19 June Read more

Taliban peace talk plans lead Afghan women to fear loss of rights
Women in particular are nervous, because Taliban rule was so bitter for them. They lost the right to an education, to most work, even to show their face in public.
The Guardian, 19 June Read more

The blurry line between Islam and Islamism
…. Previously we attempted to circumvent criticising Islam by making another false dichotomy between ‘moderate’ and ‘extremist’. This didn’t work, either.
…. the man supports female circumcision, Hamas, death to apostates, suicide bombings and so on. …. He is regarded as a moderate within the Islamic world. …. On the issue of women he is almost a liberationist — he believes they should be beaten, yes, but not with a stick.
The Spectator, 15 June Read more

Aberdeen taxis ‘refusing guide dogs’ on board
…. the Disability Advisory Group had provided details in relation to “several instances” where taxi drivers in the city had allegedly refused to take “visually impaired” passengers to their destination due to the fact that they were accompanied by their guide dogs.
The Scotsman, 14 June Read more

Palestinian Islamists are cleansing the Holy Land of Christians
…. Church Schools …. are under threat in Gaza because of the ruling party Hamas’s intention to extend their Muslim Brotherhood-inspired version of Islam.
Their edict, which forbids the education of boys and girls together, will mean that the schools must close down because of lack of space and staff. That most of the students are Muslim matters not at all. What’s important is the segregation of male and female as far as possible.
Archbishop Cranmer, 12 June Read more

Iran imposes ban on walking dogs in public
For decades, pet dogs were rare and thus tolerated in Iran, where the Islamic beliefs cherished by the vast majority of traditional Iranians consider dogs as ‘najis,’ or unclean.
But in recent years the soaring number of pet dogs – owned by the middle class scattered across Iran – has alarmed authorities, who have now criminalised taking dogs out for walks in public, or driving them around the city.
The Scotsman, 11 June Read more

Haitham al Haddad guest speaker at City University Islamic Society event
I’ll remind people of just one of his horrifying statements. “from my angle it does make perfect sense” (on the death penalty for apostasy in the context of an Islamic state) (13:25)
Harry’s Place, 10 June Read more

Muslim hate monitor to lose backing
Contrary to the group’s claim of a “cycle of violence” and a “sustained wave of attacks”, only 17 of the 212 incidents, 8 per cent, involved the physical targeting of people and there were no attacks on anyone serious enough to require medical treatment.
The Telegraph, 9 June Read more

Newcastle to SELL Cisse if his religion forbids him from wearing lender’s logo
Cisse informed the club several weeks ago that he does not want to wear the Wonga.com branding on Newcastle United’s shirts next season because of his beliefs as a Muslim.
Daily Mail, 8 June Read more

Iran’s barbaric new laws
The decision, taken by the Guardian Council after nine months’ examination of the draft proposal, means that stoning has now moved from Islamic to State law.
The Commentator, 7 June Read more

Iran bans dog-walking in public and warn animals could be ‘arrested’ if caught outside
It is the latest attempted crackdown on dogs in the country, where the animals are viewed as unclean.
Daily Mail, 6 June Read more

Edinburgh Pupils Denied Mosque Visit Over Parent’s Fears Of ‘Hate’
Children due to visit a mosque in Edinburgh as part of an educational visit have been pulled out of the trip by parents worried about “hate” being preached inside.
The Huffington Post UK, 5 June Read more

Woolwich and the dark underbelly of British Islam
…. preachers of hate as well as their followers and fellow travellers, worship in the same buildings, speak to, work with, and are related to that sensible majority. And those law-abiding citizens have a duty to challenge them, expel them and, if necessary, report them to the authorities.
The Telegraph, 3 June Read more

Tony Blair Discusses Lee Rigby Murder, Says There Is A Problem Within Islam
…. “We resisted revolutionary communism …. we defeated it by a better idea: Freedom. We can do the same with this. The better idea is a modern view of religion and its place in society and politics”.
The Huffington Post UK, 2 June Read more

Tony Blair: Woolwich attack shows there is a ‘problem within Islam’
He said that while there are radical activists in other religions, the Islamic strain is “not the province of a few extremists”.
“It has at its heart a view about religion and about the interaction between religion and politics that is not compatible with pluralistic, liberal, open-minded societies,” he said.
The Independent, 2 June Read more

May 2013

University introduces “blasphemy law” for fear of Muslim violence
The Australian National University (ANU) has apparently banned the satirisation of Islam for fear of inciting violence and creating a backlash.
The Commentator, 31 May Read more

Two maids get 10 years, 1,000 lashes for sorcery
Their Saudi employers reported the two maids to the Gulf country’s feared religious police, saying they had discovered that their families had been harmed because of sorcery practiced by the maids against them.
Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science, 31 May Read more

The BBC and its bias towards pro-immigration lobby: Report accuses ‘left-wing Corporation of downplaying violence by Islamists’
The BBC gives too much weight to pro-immigration voices and ‘almost totally ignores’ the negative social impact of multiculturalism, a new study has claimed.
Daily Mail, 29 May Read more

The East London Mosque Poses As Moderate While Hosting Extremists
…. It sticks in the craw to hear the East London Mosque/London Muslim Centre condemn terrorism and gripe about the obnoxious English Defence League, when at the very same time it is hosting …. preachers like Abu Abdissalam.
Harry’s Place, 29 May Read more

Saudi Writer ‘Urges 97,000 Twitter Followers To Sexually Molest Working Women’
Abdullah Mohammed Daoud apparently made the comments in an attempt to “encourage” Saudi Arabian women to stay at home and protect their chastity – as the country’s female labour force increases.
The Huffington Post UK, 29 May Read more

Islamists attack kissing couples in Turkey
One person was stabbed when around 20 Islamists chanting “Allah hu Akhbar” (God is Greatest) and some carrying knives attacked the demonstrators on Saturday.
The Commentator, 26 May Read more

London attack: generations divided on feelings about Muslims after killing
…. There are some challenging results, such as the finding that the number of citizens who think that conflict between groups is “largely inevitable” has risen by seven points to 40%, or that agreement with the suggestion that there will be a serious clash between British Muslims and white Britons has also risen, by nine points to 59%. But these buck the broader trend.
The Guardian, 26 May Read more

Woolwich slaughter: sorry, MCB, but this *is* a school of Islam
The Salafi-Wahhabi movement is now a global phenomenon: it has spread way beyond it primitive desert tribalism and burst forth into our civilisation. It not an Islamic denomination of peaceful shrines, sacred texts and respect for aesthetic heterogeneity: it is one of death and destruction in the name of Allah, following the zeal of Mohammed.
Archbishop Cranmer, 23 May Read more

Malaysian rape accused marries 13-year-old alleged victim
“There are many cases of men marrying underage girls,” Masmud told reporters outside court. “I do not see why my case should be any different.”
The Guardian, 22 May Read more

Twitter Will Damn Your Soul, Warns Saudi Religious Police Boss
…. a Saudi who uses social media sites – specifically Twitter – “has lost this world and his afterlife”, the BBC reports.
— The Huffington Post UK, 20 May Read more

Afghan blow to women’s rights
Religious MPs objected to at least eight articles in the legislation, including maintaining the legal age for women to marry at 16, the existence of shelters for domestic abuse victims and the halving of the number of wives permitted to two.
Daily Express, 19 May Read more

The Oxford sex ring and the preachers who teach young Muslim men that white girls are cheap
…. The view of some Islamic preachers towards white women can be appalling. They encourage their followers to believe that these women are habitually promiscuous, decadent and sleazy — sins which are made all the worse by the fact that they are kaffurs or non-believers.
Daily Mail, 15 May Read more

Egypt: authorities should release Coptic Christian teacher detained for ‘blasphemy’
The case against her is based on a complaint lodged by the parents of three of her students alleging that she insulted Islam and the Prophet Muhammad during a class.
Amnesty International UK, 13 May Read more

Preaching by extremists and discrimination through segregation has become widespread trend at UK universities equality group claims
Radical preachers spoke at nearly 200 events at universities …. over the last year. Research found that segregated seating for men and women was promoted or implied at more than a quarter of the events, at 21 separate institutions, despite university rules forbidding it.
The Independent, 13 May Read more

Sharia law used in the United Arab Emirates to jail Australian woman after she was gang-raped
She was charged with having illicit sex outside marriage, and thrown in a filthy jail cell for eight months.
The Freethinker, 13 May Read more

I do… for now. UK Muslims revive temporary marriages
“There is no difference between mut’ah marriage and prostitution. There is a time limit on the marriage, and the mahr given as a gift [from the man to the woman] is the equivalent as a payment to a prostitute,” she added.
BBC, 13 May Read more

Saudi Arabia to punish men for converting woman to Christianity
A Lebanese man was sentenced to six years in prison and 300 lashes for converting the woman, while a Saudi man was sentenced to two years and 200 lashes for aiding her escape abroad.
The Independent, 13 May Read more

If only Hitler had finished them off
They are the most miserly of all the peoples. Wickedness, trickery, and deception are engrained within them. The Jews – with only few exceptions – have a natural disposition toward treachery. The Jews think nothing of violating treaties. They have no respect for them.
Mick Hartley, 9 May Read more

We need answers to the doubts and distrust raised by call for sharia law
…. Some men are choosing not to marry through the civil law process, because it makes divorce simpler and does not enable a woman rightly to claim her share of the assets at the time of divorce.
Yorkshire Post, 8 May Read more

Sharia councils: unjust, unequal and consequence of failed integration policies
…. the main issues to be addressed here aren’t only the discriminatory nature and inequality of these councils, but also the broader context of the failed integration polices of the current government.
National Secular Society, 1 May Read more

April 2013

Fear and fundamentalism as the ‘modesty police’ patrol Gaza
…. It was only after the beating that police officers set to work trying to shave off the one-inch fin of gelled hair that was the cause of his arrest.
The Telegraph, 29 April Read more

Secrets of Britain’s Sharia Councils
Some women reveal they have suffered domestic violence ignored by these councils as campaigners say it is time to tackle the parallel legal system which can run counter to British law.
BBC, 26 April Read more

Hamid Karzai orders ban on ‘un-Islamic’ shows on Afghan TV
The Ulema Council complained to Karzai that there were “many TV stations that turn to vulgarisms and broadcast immoral programmes, which are counter to national interests and Islamic values”.
The Guardian, 25 April Read more

Islamophobia is a government priority. What about Islamism?
And at Woolwich Crown Court a cell of radical Muslims from Birmingham are being sentenced for attempting to detonate a set of rucksack bombs and carry out ‘Mumbai-style’ attacks in the UK at targets including synagogues.
The Spectator, 25 April Read more

Is Jemima Khan using relativism to defend polygamy?
…. Ms Khan has found a way to justify polygamy in the name of multicultural integration. …. What will follow then, a defense of female genital mutilation and domestic slavery – both widely practiced in the Muslim world.
The Commentator, 24 April Read more

Leaving Islam is not a crime
Morocco’s High Council of Ulemas (the highest government religious institution headed by the King) has issued a fatwa decreeing the death penalty for Moroccans who leave Islam.
Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain, 23 April Read more

Could polygamy be a practical answer?
…. According to the Singlemuslim.com poll, 61 per cent of Muslim men and 28 per cent of Muslim women agree with Hasan that British law should be changed to permit polygamy. “Britain is refusing to accept that polygamy takes place,” she says. “It’s a reality and I think the British legal system is going to have to open its eyes and accept that it’s a reality in Britain. “Polygamy is not going to go away.”
The New Statesman, 23 April Read more

Women to blame for earthquakes, says Iran cleric
…. “Many women who do not dress modestly … lead young men astray, corrupt their chastity and spread adultery in society, which increases earthquakes,” Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi was quoted as saying by Iranian media.
The Guardian, 19 April Read more

Egyptian bride ordered to pay £5,000 compensation to groom because she had secret surgery to restore her virginity
The court upheld a previous ruling that found she had deceived her husband and increased the compensation she must now pay for the emotional damage she caused him.
Daily Mail, 18 April Read more

Inquiry launched after Islamic group holds segregated lecture
The talk, entitled Does God Exist?, featured a guest speaker Hamza Tzortzis as part of an Islamic Awareness week. Seating at the event was segregated, with different entrances into the lecture theatre for men and women.
The Guardian, 16 April Read more

University probing Muslim group after it ‘forced male and female students to sit in separate areas during public talk on God’
Leicester University spoke of its concerns over photos showing hand-written signs requesting that male and female students sit in separate areas at a public talk by the university’s Islamic Society.
Daily Mail, 16 April Read more

Christian airport worker vows to take Muslim bullying case to Luxembourg after being granted right to appeal against sacking
Nohad Halawi allegedly weathered cruel rumours that she was ‘anti-Islamist,’ on top of a systematic catalogue of intimidation that included telling the 48-year-old that she would go to Hell if she did not convert to Islam.
…. She was fired in July 2011 after five Muslim colleagues complained she was anti-Islamic followed a heated conversation in the store.
Daily Mail, 13 April Read more

Trouble in paradise: The darker side of the Maldives
In a recent statement, Adhaalath backed the flogging, saying: “The purpose of penalties like these in Islamic shariah is to maintain order in society and to save it from sinful acts. We must turn a deaf ear to the international organisations which are calling to abolish these penalties.”
The Independent, 11 April Read more

Sharia courts are putting women at risk of violence from abusive husbands warns CPS
…. the investigation found courts in London …. making rulings on domestic and marital issues according to Islamic law which appeared at odds with English family law.
Although they are not legally binding, those who were subject to the rulings …. felt they had to follow them as a matter of religious belief – or because they felt under pressure from family and community to do so.
womensgrid – women’s news, 10 April Read more

Bradford Council for Mosques in talks over Shariah court
The revelation that talks were taking place for Bradford to have its own Shariah panel came hours before BBC One’s Panorama programme featuring an undercover investigation into Britain’s Shariah courts was screened last night.
Telegraph and Argus, 9 April Read more

Inside Britain’s Sharia courts
Ayesha, a thin and haunted-looking woman in traditional dress and a headscarf told me her husband, who hit her even when she was pregnant, had been imprisoned for his violent behaviour. She and her children had injunctions against him, and yet when she went to Dewsbury Sharia Council for a divorce, they still wanted the couple to meet for mediation.
“I said, I can’t do that as he isn’t even allowed near my house because I’m frightened and can’t face him,” says Ayesha, “but they didn’t take any notice.”
The Telegraph, 7 April Read more

Paralysis or blood money? Skewed justice in Saudi Arabia
The macabre nature of these sentences is highly unusual even for Saudi Arabia, reflecting a particularly technical, obsessively literalist and extrapolative interpretation of Islamic law. But behind these cases lies a more problematic tenet: that of diyya, blood money paid in compensation to the family of the victim, and which the young man in question failed to raise.
The Guardian, 5 April Read more

Saudi Arabian court orders man to be surgically paralysed in ‘eye for an eye’ punishment
According to reports Khawaher had stabbed a childhood friend in the spine during a dispute a decade ago, paralysing him from the waist down.
The Independent, 4 April Read more

Muslim dad’s court threat over Keighley nursery meal
Mr Shukoor …. alleges nursery staff failed to ensure Ayaan stuck to his religion’s strict dietary rules, and also regularly served vegetarian meat substitutes to Muslim pupils instead of halal food.
Keighley News, 4 April Read more

UK students given booklets claiming, “every Muslim should be a terrorist” authored by banned Islamic hate-preacher
Counter-extremism organisation Student Rights has reported that it has been contacted by students after material handed out at an event on a British university campus appeared to endorse terrorism and other discriminatory and offensive viewpoints.
The Commentator, 4 April Read more

Halal meat served in three-quarters of council-supported schools in Waltham Forest
Just one school serves both Halal and non-Halal meat and 15 serve meat from animals slaughtered using ‘standard’ methods, a Guardian enquiry has discovered.
East London and West Essex Guardian Series, 4 April Read more

Britain ‘concerned’ after Saudi Arabia ‘orders man to be paralysed’
Saudi Arabia uses Islamic Sharia law, which involves “eye-for-an-eye” punishment for crimes, but allows victims to pardon offenders in exchange for compensation. Al-Khawahir was sentenced to be surgically paralysed unless he can pay his victim one million riyals (£180,000).
The Telegraph, 4 April Read more

A war against women: The CSW declaration and the Muslim Brotherhood riposte
The declared rationale of the condemnation was that the …. document consists of “articles that contradict established principles of Islam, undermine Islamic ethics and destroy the family… [and] would lead to complete disintegration of society, and would certainly be the final step in the intellectual and cultural invasion of Muslim countries.”
openDemocracy, 3 April Read more

MP demands action over shocking contents of Islamic letter on Halifax schooling
A “COMPLETELY inappropriate” letter warning parents that a meeting was “more serious than death” has been sent out by an Islamic group with links to a free school which has been given the initial go-ahead by the Government.
Yorkshire Post, 2 April Read more

Pakistani youth “cool on democracy”
More than half of 5,000 18-29 year-old Pakistanis polled said democracy had not been good for them or the country. When asked to pick the best political system, both Sharia and military rule were favoured over democracy.
BBC, 2 April Read more

March 2013

The racist menace? Muslims declare victory in fight over ‘anti-Islamic’ Lego
Austria’s Turkish community claimed a victory in its fight against Danish toy giant Lego yesterday after the firm agreed to withdraw a Star Wars toy set featuring a mosque-like building inhabited by an obese, hookah–smoking alien, following complaints that it was anti-Muslim.
The Independent, 31 March Read more

How Egypt’s radical rulers crush the lives and hopes of women
…. it’s women of all classes who have found themselves most alienated – written out of the jostling for power and subjected to a skyrocketing number of sex assaults, rapes and harassment.
The Guardian, 30 March Read more

British teacher faces a year in jail for having lunch with married man in Abu Dhabi.
The ex-pat teacher …. says she was introduced to the Syrian man by a male colleague. He is understood to have eaten with the pair but then left them alone at the man’s house – where the woman was arrested.
Daily Mail, 29 March Read more

‘Arrest the atheists who insulted Islam!’
Tens of thousands of Islamic activists prayed on the streets of the Bangladeshi capital today during a rally calling for the introduction of blaspemy laws. …. demanding the arrest of ‘atheist bloggers who insulted Islam’.
Daily Mail, 29 March Read more

British woman arrested in Abu Dhabi for having LUNCH with a man who was not her husband
The woman, who teaches in a suburb of the capital, has also been charged with drinking alcohol during the weekend meal.
The Daily Mirror, 28 March Read more

The Muslim Brotherhood has shown its contempt for Egypt’s women
Last week, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood issued a strongly-worded statement unabashedly rejecting the draft UN declaration calling for an end to all forms of violence against women.
The Guardian, 18 March Read more

Britons afraid to challenge radical Islam, says former Obama adviser
The professor …. threatened to walk out unless organisers agreed to let men and women sit together, which was eventually agreed – but was then astonished to find himself being accused of intolerance by angry members of the audience.
…. he suggested in Britain people were often too polite to object to such practices as well as being cowed by those eager to protest whenever they felt “their cultural norms are not being met”.
The Telegraph, 15 March Read more

Pork DNA found in primary school’s ‘Halal’ sausages
The Halal sausages were a menu choice in 15 primary schools, two nurseries, one special school and one pupil referral unit, all of which took Halal-only meat. The lean minced beef was used in 18 schools.
The Independent, 14 March Read more

UCL adopts sharia law for public debate, separating women from men
…. the audience was segregated by gender (ie women in the cheap seats at the back).
It pitched atheist Professor Lawrence Krauss against Hamza Andreas Tzortzis…. He agitates for a global caliphate and isn’t particularly disposed to Jews, gays, adulterous women or democracy. He has publicly denounced liberty:
Archbishop Cranmer, 11 March Read more

Neighbours’ row ends in a holy war against Christians of Pakistan
Christian communities across Pakistan have launched angry protests after a Muslim mob set fire to a Christian neighbourhood in Lahore. The arson attacks took place amid allegations that a Christian man had committed blasphemy.
The Independent, 10 March Read more

Pakistani mob torches Christian homes in Lahore over prophet Mohamed ‘blasphemy’
Hundreds of people in the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore ransacked a Christian neighborhood today and torched dozens of homes after hearing reports that a Christian man had committed blasphemy against Islam’s prophet, said a police officer.
The Independent, 9 March Read more

Lifting the veil on London’s stylish hijab wearers
The Iranian-born photographer was inspired to create the pictures …. to celebrate how the head coverings had led to an outpouring of creativity and originality in the way they are worn.
[A READER’S COMMENT] …. I have to say, that for people who are trying to not show physical beauty, they’re all very tarted up!
The Guardian, 6 March Read more

Gaza marathon: UN cancels race over Hamas ban on women
Hamas said the marathon could go ahead if “local traditions” were respected.
Conservative elements in Gaza have sometimes complained about mixing between the sexes, especially in schools and at sporting events.
BBC, 5 March Read more

February 2013

Reading University cancels “kill gays” Islamist preacher
Thahabi had been filmed by Channel Four’s Dispatches programme justifying the murder of gay people. Incitement to murder is a serious criminal offence.
Harry’s Place, 28 February Read more

Council of mosques calls for boycott of school meals
Cllr Salim Mulla …. “The responsibility of this horrendous act lies solely with the LCC [Lancashire County Council] which has once again undermined the value of the Islamic faith and one of the most fundamental aspects of Islam.”
Asian Image, 26 February Read more

Maldives girl to get 100 lashes for pre-marital sex
The charges against the girl were brought against her last year after police investigated accusations that her stepfather had raped her and killed their baby.
BBC, 26 February Read more

How did modern Islam become so intolerant?
Polymath Ziauddin Sardar has met “countless Muslim scholars, thinkers, writers and activists” who are impatient for change and reform. That can’t happen while there is an aversion to criticism and self-criticism.
Thoughtful and honest Muslims stay silent because they fear ostracisation or inciting more racism against Muslims – both real perils. But silence now is cowardly, and collusion with the corrupters of our faith. True believers have a duty to speak out against that corruption.
The Independent, 25 February Read more

Muslim students take legal advice after City University shuts down Friday prayer meeting
…. In one sermon, which was recorded, the speaker said: “The Islamic state teaches to cut the hand of the thief. Yes it does. And it also teaches us to stone the adulterer. When they tell us that, the Islamic state tells us and teaches us to kill the apostate, yes it does.”
The Independent, 22 February Read more

OIC coming back with another attempt to stamp out free speech
Getting the go-ahead from the Cairo Islamic Summit, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has been actively trying to get the “denigration of religions” recognized as a criminal offence, according to a top official.
National Secular Society, 21 February Read more

Horror expressed over multi-faith school’s failure to ‘ensure the integrity’ of halal-only food
YES, you read that right. ALL pupils attending Moseley School in Wake Green Road have to be fed only food acceptable to Muslims, and the school got a roasting after a ghastly non-halal episode of an unspecified nature, occurred late last year.
The Freethinker, 21 February Read more

Dinner lady sacked for serving Muslim children with non-halal meat at multi-faith school
The incident outraged parents at the ‘halal-only’ Moseley School in Birmingham, and they have forced the headmaster to apologise for ‘insulting’ their faith.
Daily Mail, 20 February Read more

Birmingham school says sorry for serving non-Halal meat to Muslim pupils
A member of staff at Moseley School, in Wake Green Road, has been removed from their post following an investigation into the ‘unintentional error’.
Birmingham Mail, 20 February Read more

Foreign ‘Christian Missionaries’ Arrested In Libya, Charge With Publishing Biblical Texts, Which Carries Death Penalty
“They were arrested on Tuesday at a publishing house where they were printing thousands of books that called for conversion to Christianity”.
The Huffington Post UK, 18 February Read more

“Homosexuals would be executed” says Islamist speaker at campus event
Footage seen by Student Rights has revealed shocking statements made at an event at Manchester University, showing various Islamist speakers promoting ideas such as the execution of homosexuals and the amputation of thieves’ hands.
Student Rights, 18 February Read more

Statues of the Buddha join Barbie dolls and The Simpsons as items banned by Iran
Authorities are confiscating Buddha statues from shops in the capital Tehran to stop the promotion of the religion in the country.
Daily Mail, 18 February Read more

Death threats to UK’s top Muslim MP who voted for gay marriage
Mr Khan – who became Britain’s first Muslim Minister to attend Cabinet in the last Government – has been condemned by British-based hardline clerics, who have accused him of “selling out” his religion.
Daily Mail, 17 February Read more

Libya arrests foreign ‘missionaries’ – Four foreign nationals accused of distributing Christian literature, a charge that could carry the death penalty
“Proselytising is forbidden in Libya. We are a 100% Muslim country and this kind of action affects our national security,” security official Hussein Bin Hmeid told Reuters.
The Guardian, 17 February Read more

Iran confiscates Buddha statues in crackdown on ‘cultural invasion’
The Islamic republic has long fought against items such as Barbie toys to block western influence, but this appears to be the first time authorities have shown an opposition to symbols from the east.
The Guardian, 17 February Read more

Muslim man who claimed religion allowed him to hit wife
Shamshu Miah, 58, of Alexandra Road, Llandudno, struck his wife three times after she did not get him a cigarette. He later told police his religion allowed him to hit his wife if she did not do as she was told.
Daily Post, 13 February Read more

Sharia Law: Extremism the Government Ignores
…. David Cameron once said that multiculturalism had failed – he has yet to prove that he means it.
There is no better opportunity than this; he should shut down the sharia councils …. that his government currently defends in the name of culture, prosecute hate speech and incitement to murder, prosecute child marriage as rape, end cultural relativism and racist separatism once and for all….. and enforce One Law for All.
The Huffington Post UK, 12 February Read more

“Women cause rape upon themselves” says Egyptian Human Rights Committee
Daily News Egypt reports that Reda Al-Hefnawy, Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) member said, “Women should not mingle with men during protests. How can the Ministry of Interior be tasked with protecting a lady who stands among a group of men?”
The Commentator, 11 February Read more

Preachers of hate on British TV: what they said that broke the broadcasting rules
…. What Ofcom ruled: “In Ofcom’s view it is potentially offensive for any service to broadcast comments suggesting that it is acceptable to apply a ‘penalty’ and kill any individual for renouncing their faith.
The Telegraph, 9 February Read more

Preachers of hate who spread their violent word on British TV channels
The cases, disclosed today, include examples of an imam telling viewers that those who disrespect the prophet Mohammed should be killed, and another broadcaster saying homosexuals should be beaten and tortured.
The Telegraph, 9 February Read more

Secular Tunisians fight back after murder of opposition leader
…. Al Jazeera’s Hashem Ahelbarra said that “[Belaid] has been a vocal critic of the government, saying that the outcome of the revolution in Tunisia was the growing power and influence of the Islamists.
Harry’s Place, 8 February Read more

January 2013

Muslim patrols could become more prevalent and more violent, warns anti-extremist
…. groups of Muslim vigilantes, dubbing themselves ‘Muslim Patrols’ have approached Londoners and demanded they behave in an Islamic way by not drinking.
They have also told women to put more clothes on, claiming they are entering ‘Muslim areas’.
The Telegraph, 30 January Read more

Locked up and whipped by Malian Islamists – for riding on back of her boyfriend’s motorbike
Playing judge and jury, Mr Mossa sentenced Ms Djikke’s to 95 lashes to be administered in a public market. She felt helpless, she said. “They (the Islamists) could execute people or amputate limbs and no one could do anything.”
The Independent, 30 January Read more

Mufti’s threats over civil marriage in Lebanon
In an extraordinary fatwa yesterday, the Grand Mufti of Lebanon
threatened to excommunicate any member of parliament or government minister who supports the legalisation of civil marriage.
al-bab.com, 29 January Read more

‘I feel like a stranger where I live’
“When you go swimming, it’s much healthier to keep your whole body completely covered, you know.” The Muslim lady behind the counter in my local pharmacy has recently started giving me advice like this. …. It seems that almost overnight it’s changed from Acton Vale into Acton Veil.
The Telegraph, 29 January Read more

Saudi vice police order shops who employ men and women to put up segregation walls to keep them apart
The barriers need to be at least 5ft 3in high and will keep staff from seeing and communicating with workers of the opposite sex.
Daily Mail, 29 January Read more

Iran unveils new finger-amputating machine ahead of announcement of increasingly severe punishment of thieves
Photographs published by Iran’s official press agency show a blindfolded man having his fingers severed by what appears to be a crude amputation device.
According to the Insa news service, the man had been convicted of theft and adultery in a court in Shiraz the previous week.
The Independent, 28 January Read more

Radical Muslims try to get their message across
IT IS unfortunate that Conservative peer Baroness Warsi picked last week to claim Muslims feel alienated in British society, while across London in Whitechapel arrests were made after Muslim gang members apparently filmed themselves confiscating alcohol from revellers in a pathetic attempt to impose a form of Sharia Law.
Sunday Express, 27 January Read more

Baroness Warsi: Fewer than one in four people believe Islam is compatible with British way of life
Highlighting unpublished research showing that a majority of the country now believes that Islam is a threat to Western civilisation Baroness Sayeeda Warsi will say that “underlying, unfounded mistrust” of Muslims is in itself fuelling extremism.
The Independent, 24 January Read more

East London Mosque condemns homophobia, yet advertised four anti-gay speakers last month alone
“The actions of this tiny minority have no place in our faith.” This claim has been trustingly repeated by various journalists in the coverage this week. But, as the most cursory investigation would show, it is a brazen lie.
The Telegraph, 24 January Read more

Lego Accused Of Racism Amid Claims Jabba’s Palace Resembles Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia Mosque
A Turkish community in Austria has accused Lego of racism amid claims a model from its Star Wars range resembles a renowned mosque.
The Huffington Post UK, 24 January Read more

Saudi police stop woman from driving car even though she’d taken over from her husband who had fallen ill
Officers stopped the woman after receiving reports she was driving near the city of Madinah – flouting a strict ban that prevents females from getting behind the wheel in Saudi Arabia.
Daily Mail, 22 January Read more

Homophobic ‘vigilante’ video appears online
A video has appeared online showing men shouting homophobic abuse at another man in east London, telling him to “get out of here” as “it is a Muslim area”.
BBC, 22 January Read more

New report: Iranian Christians denied basic rights
The plight of Iranian Protestants, says the report, is of particular concern. The community faces tough restrictions on religious practice and association, arbitrary arrests and detentions for the practice of its faith.
The Commentator, 21 January Read more

E. London residents abused by homophobic ‘Muslim patrol’
The men video themselves confronting people on the streets and ask them to throw away alcohol or tell women to cover up. In one video (below) they harass and abuse a man by calling him a “bloody fag” and tell him to leave from what they say is a ‘Muslim area’.
Liberal Conspiracy, 22 January Read more

Police investigation launched after footage of ‘Muslim patrols’ in Tower Hamlets emerges online
“We are Muslims who patrol the area, forbidding evil”, they can be heard saying.
One passer-by is told to “remove yourself away from the Mosque”.
East London Advertiser, 18 January Read more

Family Jailed In Egypt For Becoming Christian
The family was sentenced to 15 years in prison in court last week. Christians in Egypt who convert to Islam have complained they face difficulties if they decide to convert back, especially in changing names on official documents.
Sky News, 17 January Read more

Iranian single women might need father’s permission to go abroad
At the moment, unmarried women and men above the age of 18 can leave the country if they have a passport but, according to the new bill, single women would need official consent from their guardian, usually their father.
The Guardian, 15 January Read more

The Muslim theory of evolution
Belief in evolution remains a minority position in virtually all Muslim societies around the world today. According to studies, 22 percent of Turks, 16 percent of Indonesians, 14 percent of Pakistanis, 11 percent of Malaysians, and 8 percent of Egyptians believe in evolution. In comparison, belief in evolution is between 60 – 80 percent in most European societies, and 40 percent in the US.
The Commentator, 14 January Read more

Extremists attend more than 200 university events
These statistics demonstrate that the presence of extremist preachers on campus is not a figment of people’s imaginations, but a serious issue that universities cannot afford to be complacent about.
The Telegraph, 12 January Read more

Domestic violence campaign targets Scottish Muslims
Muslim women’s charity Amina will use Islamic teachings and an Imam to challenge the misconception that Islam allows violence against women. The charity said it was aware of many cases where people used their religion in an attempt to justify violence.
BBC, 8 January Read more

Indonesian province moves to ban women from straddling motorbikes
The Aceh laws regulate women’s dress and public morality, require shops and other places to close at prayer time, and are enforced by a special unit. Punishments can include public caning.
…. distributed …. informing residents of the proposed law, which would apply to adolescent girls and women. It states that women are not allowed to straddle motorbikes other than in an “emergency”, and are not allowed to hold on to the driver.
The Guardian, 7 January Read more

Mother jailed for beating son to death for failing to memorise Qur’an
Ege treated her son Yaseen “like a dog” when he struggled to memorise passages of the holy book of Islam, Cardiff crown court heard. Over three months, she beat him until he collapsed on the floor of his bedroom — still mumbling verses — and died.
The Guardian, 7 January Read more

In 2012, sharia enforcement continued to spread around the world
…. Islamists primarily using non violent methods at present — such as the Muslim Brotherhood that originated in Egypt — have increasingly become masters of using the democratic process as a one way street to attain their Islamist goals.
Other Islamists, such as Boko Haram in Nigeria, focus on violent methods. However, the end goal of both is the same. Both of these strands of sharia enforcement have continued in 2012.
ConservativeHome, 5 January Read more

Magazine firebombed for printing satirical ‘Sharia’ edition in France publishes Prophet Mohammed cartoon book
Charlie Hebdo put together a 65-page comic book which went on sale yesterday.
The magazine’s website claims the publication is ‘halal’ insisting that Muslim scholars and historians researched and edited the cartoon book.
Daily Mail, 3 January Read more

In the Middle East, the Arab spring has given way to a Christian winter
About 600,000 Copts – more than the entire population of Manchester – have left their homeland since the early 1980s. If Mohamed Morsi’s new constitution is implemented, the second-class status of Christians will be set in stone.
[A READER’S COMMENT] “Ignorant western assumptions about cultural uniformity are mirrored by Islamists bent on purging other faith groups from their lands.”
Great; I was worried for a minute there that you wouldn’t find a way to somehow implicate the West in this.
The Guardian, 2 January Read more

Muslim parents sue primary school over ban on hijab
St Cyprian’s Greek Orthodox primary in south London faces being hauled before the High Court amid claims that its uniform policy breaches children’s religious freedom.
The couple insisted it would be a sin for their nine-year-old daughter’s head to be uncovered while in the presence of male teachers.
The Telegraph, 2 January Read more

What do we mean by Islamism?
…. I once heard a leader of the Muslim Council of Britain declare that he could not condemn or call for the outright abolition of …. stoning to death of women who sleep with a man not their husband – because to do so would be to go against the teaching of the Qur’an.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Therein lies the problem radical Islam is basically mandated by the Qur’an and the Hadith. Like it not there is no getting away from that and that is why spiritualists such as the Sufi strain (many of which are also violent) are nonetheless condemned as being un-Islamic by the Islamic purists.
openDemocracy, 2 January Read more

Missing Pieces – 4.0 English Media Outside the UK

This lists over 320 news reports and articles covering Islam and Muslims published by English language media based outside the UK between January and November 2013.

In each case you have the title, a brief representative or telling extract, the name of the publication, and the publication date. Where available and especially relevant a typical comment by a reader is given.

Efforts to impose Sharia law in Iraq spark controversy
…. Should the law be approved, Iraqi municipalities would be required to apply penalties that violate human rights, such as mutilation and stoning, among others.
Al-Monitor, 28 November Read more

France reaffirms limits on Muslim headscarves, veils
A French appeals court, ruling in a hotly debated religious rights case, on Wednesday upheld the dismissal of a Muslim daycare worker for wearing a headscarf at a creche that demanded strict neutrality from its employees.
Reuters, 27 November Read more

Is this public pool giving special privileges to a certain religious group?
…. One of the sisters …. explained …. that she needed the private swimming time because her religion did not permit her to swim in the presence of men.
The Daily Caller, 27 November Read more

No place for radicalism
“Muslims urged to turn back on country” …. should be mandatory reading for all Australians, because this organisation is the thin end of the wedge.
…. Muslims can go a long way to resolving these suspicions by denouncing radical Islam. Until this happens, many will not unreasonably believe that Muslims who are not part of the solution might well be part of the problem.
The Australian, 25 November Read more

An intolerant educational system made me indifferent to the death of non-Muslims
…. What is more alarming is that at the tender age of eight, this boy had justified his delight by distinguishing between the life of a Muslim and a non-Muslim. As much as I hate to admit it, I was this boy.
— The Express Tribune, 23 November Read more

Woman accuses firm of sacking her for wanting to wear Muslim headscarf
Mariam El Hassan, 23, had worked at the firm for five years. Her lawyer says she asked the firm if she could start wearing the headscarf to work for religious reasons but permission was denied.
— ABC, 23 November Read more

U.S. Should Speak Out Against Human Rights Violations Caused by Kuwaiti Blasphemy Laws
…. five years in prison in Kuwait. He has been convicted of insulting the Prophet after posting a message on Twitter about the role of imams in Islam.
— Human Rights First, 22 November Read more

Moroccan teen, forced to marry her rapist, commits suicide
A Moroccan teen committed suicide last month after her family forced her to marry her rapist
— Al Jazeera America, 22 November Read more

Teenage poet, Islam critic, assaulted in Denmark
In his poetry, Hassan has criticized what he claims is a culture of hypocrisy underpinning Denmark’s Muslim population.
…. He has also lashed out at Muslims for committing fraud with social benefits, beating their children and failing to integrate in Danish society while clinging to the Quran.
— Associated Press, 20 November Read more

Man arrested for sharing blasphemous content on Facebook
A young man in Pakistan’s Punjab Province has been arrested for sharing blasphemous content on Facebook, as the government launched a crackdown on the spread of such content on social media.
— THE TIMES OF INDIA, 20 November Read more

Islam’s views on freedom to women has not changed
…. Muslim women should not work in a place where only a woman and a man are present. They should go for job only in a place where there are enough number of women and trustworthy men. About 90 per cent of jobs do not require man-women mingling. These rules cannot be changed.
— The Indian Express, 19 November Read more

Australia conference hears ‘this country at war’ with radical Islam
A HARDLINE Islamic group has warned Muslims that the government was trying to “brainwash” their children and that they should resist any attempts to water down their strict view of Islam.
— NEWS.com.au, 18 November Read more

Calls for internet censorship to ward off attacks on Islam
“They are launching calculated attacks by spreading news which insults Islam through the use of symbols and in social media such as Facebook and Twitter”.
— The Malaysian Insider, 16 November Read more

Libya ‘seeks to make its laws more Islamic’
…. One law imposing strict restrictions on polygamy …. was abolished after the revolution. The justice ministry’s plan would appear to be aimed at satisfying the demands of Salafist, or extremist Sunni Muslim, groups in the violence-wracked North African nation.
Daily Times, 15 November Read more

Sharia Law Thrives In Berlin
A Muslim family negotiating for compensation as part of an accidental death case suggested the family of the man responsible for killing their 17-year-old son give them a herd of 100 camels.
…. A hundred camels would have amounted to about 55,000 euros. After much haggling, the aggrieved family instead settled for 20,000 euros.
Worldcrunch, 14 November Read more

Nude paintings blocked in German school spark debate
The paintings’ exclusion from an exhibition Friday met with public outcry in a neighbourhood where tensions were already running high. …. “Muslims need to get used to it if they want to live here. It’s part of the culture here.”
AFP, 13 November Read more

Arab Spring nations backtrack on women’s rights, poll says
…. The Brotherhood warned that a U.N. declaration on women’s rights could destroy society by allowing a woman to travel, work and use contraception without her husband’s approval and letting her control family planning.
Al Arabiya, 12 November Read more

Women among the biggest losers in Arab Spring
…. A survey of 22 Arab states by the Thomson Reuters Foundation found three of the five Arab Spring countries – Egypt, Syria and Yemen – at the bottom rung of the women’s rights listing.
France24, 12 November Read more

Greek Supreme Court puts sharia law before civil law
…. a Muslim man …. had prepared his will in accordance with Greek civil law, leaving all his assets to his wife. The will was challenged by the deceased man’s sister who claimed a share of his assets, claiming that the Islamic law of succession does not recognize the right of a Muslim to make a public will.
Digital Journal, 11 November Read more

Iran arrests author of controversial article on Shiite Islam
Iran on Monday arrested Ali Asghar Gharavi, the author of a controversial article seen by critics as questioning the beliefs of Shiite Islam.
The Daily Star, 11 November Read more

Al-Qaeda in Syria raids wedding party, warns against music and singing
“…. if a music band is invited to a wedding again, the person responsible will be arrested because this is immoral,” the newspaper reported.
Al Arabiya, 10 November Read more

Muslim Survey On Sunnis And Shias Reveals Worries About Religious Conflict
Pew Research Center polls …. report high levels of concern regarding religious conflict in many countries where Shia and Sunni Muslims live together.
The Huffington Post, 9 November Read more

Teenager detained for insulting Islam on Facebook
A school dropout from Malacca who made remarks insulting Islam on Facebook was arrested by police on Thursday.
The Star, 8 November Read more

Young Christian charged with blasphemy living on a knife-edge
A young Christian pastor, in hiding after being accused of blaspheming against Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), has surrendered to police due to serious threats to his life reportedly from extremists belonging to a banned religious organisation, his lawyer told Pakistan Today.
Pakistan Today, 8 November Read more

‘I am Malala’ banned in private schools
Malala’s defence of Salmaan Rushdie in the name of freedom of expression, not writing Peace Be Upon Him after the name of prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and criticising the Quranic injunctions about the status of women in testifying as witnesses are only a few things which will challenge the ideological foundations of our next generation,” Kashif said while talking to Pakistan Today.
Pakistan Today, 7 November Read more

Teen Poet Sparks New Debate on Islam in Denmark
…. In addition to targeting hypocrisy, his poetry, he says, speaks to the problem of Muslims “exploiting the society they live in.” On free speech, Hassan says “Muslims love to take advantage of (it), and as soon as there is someone else saying something critical against them, they want to restrict it.”
The Wall Street Journal, 6 November Read more

Muslim workers say they were fired for praying
…. the entire group of 24 stopped working at 7:24 p.m., walked to a corner of the large mail room and began silent prayer in separate huddles of men and women. The sexes are not allowed to pray together in Islam.
USA TODAY, 6 November Read more

No place for Sharia law in Russia – senior MP
The head of the State Duma’s Constitutional Legislation Committee has blasted as “extremely dangerous” the suggestion to regulate some relations in certain regions by adhering to the norms of Sharia law.
RT, 6 November Read more

Heathrow Employee Sacked over Alleged Insult to Islam
“I didn’t say anything wrong. I was complimenting a colleague of mine,” she said.
Halawi, a Christian from Lebanon, was having a conversation in Arabic with a co-worker and praising a Muslim colleague when it was misinterpreted by another Muslim employee as an insult.
CBNNews, 5 November Read more

Britain’s Muslim prisoners
The number of Muslims in British prisons is increasing at a rate eight times that of the overall prison population, according to the British Parliament. Today, Muslims make up nearly 5% of Britain’s population and 13% of its prison population.
Al Jazeera, 5 November Read more

Woman faces whipping over refusal to cover hair in Sudan
Amira Osman Hamid faces a possible whipping if convicted of violating Sudan’s laws governing morality.
Gulf News, 4 November Read more

Turkish female MP makes historic plea to preserve Turkey’s secularism
…. she expressed her fears about women losing their individual freedoms as 5-year-old girls are being covered up and 15-year-olds given away in marriage. She said the headscarf is like a double-edged sword, representing freedom of conscience on the one hand, and repression on the other.
Examiner.com, 2 November Read more

Increasing number of extreme Islamists in Norway
These Islamists have one thing in common, – they want to introduce Sharia laws in Norway, the newspaper writes.
The Norway Post, 2 November Read more

Afghan Religious Council Denounces TV Programs
The Herat-based Ulema Council said shows it deems offensive to Muslims pose a greater danger to the country than do suicide bombers.
Radio Free Europe, 2 November Read more

School inspectors recommend closure of Australia’s largest Muslim school
Among the Minister’s concerns are questions over attendance, Higher School Certificate curriculum, educational quality, safe environment and building.
ABC News, 1 November Read more

Islam or Islamophobia?
They even supported stoning or whatever punishment Islam or prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) commanded for adultery or any other crime. They even believed that these practises should be implemented around the world.
Sam Harris, 1 November Read more

Europe’s Migration Crisis
…. the unwillingness of some Muslim immigrants in Europe to fully assimilate into the main stream European society constitutes in itself a real challenge to peace and tranquility inside and outside Europe.
Arab Times Kuwait English Daily, 1 November Read more

October 2013

Who knew notes could kill?
Like all Christians accused of blasphemy in Pakistan, Adnan and his family are now forced to live in a state of constant fear. Pursued by both the police and Islamic extremists, Adnan has gone into hiding fearing for his own life and the lives of his family.
Christian Today Australia, 31 October Read more

Syria’s Christian Community Cries Out for Help
…. two new mass graves containing a total of 30 bodies were found in Sadad, an ancient Christian town of some 15,000 people between Damascus and Homs, bringing to 45 the number of residents killed there by Islamist militias since October 21.
National Review Online, 31 October Read more

Iran shuts down newspaper, cites anti-Islamic article
Iran has shut down a reformist newspaper over an article that allegedly undermined Islamic values. Bahar published an op-ed article …. that expressed doubts the Prophet Muhammad had appointed a successor — a statement that contradicts the beliefs of Shiite Muslims.
The Associated Press, 28 October Read more

British Muslims defiant over al-Shabab threat
…. It celebrates the murder of British soldier Lee Rigby in Woolwich, south London, in May, and accuses Muslim community leaders who condemned the attack of being on the British government’s payroll and of “mutilating the teachings of Islam”.
Al Jazeera, 26 October Read more

Thousands march in Montreal for values charter
The group has now collected 39,000 signatures for a petition that, among other things, calls for the charter to be renamed the “Secular Charter of Quebec” and for a clear line to be drawn between church and state in order to promote equality between women and men and defend women’s rights.
CBC News, 26 October Read more

Fine for burqa remarks questioned
Farm worker Yuet Rappard should not have been fined for telling a foreign student to remove her burqa, Otago University religious freedom professor Rex Ahdar says.
Otago Daily Times, 26 October Read more

A massacre of Muslims in the name of Islam!
Between 2003 and 2010, 1,003 suicide attacks were carried out in Iraq. While the perpetrators may say they are carrying these attacks out as a part of jihad, and to kill foreign invaders, the truth is that 12,284 Iraqis have lost their lives in such attacks and only 200 foreigners have been killed.
Today’s Zaman, 25 October Read more

American Student Slashed In London, Police Eye “Muslims Patrols”
The attack took place in an area where police say self-appointed “Muslim patrols” have been operating. The men have allegedly targeted gay Londoners, drinkers and women they consider to be dressed inappropriately.
The Daily Beast, 24 October Read more

American student in “Muslim Patrols area” of London
The gang appear to smash a bottle into Houyne’s face and then repeatedly kick and punch him as he tries to escape.
Trending Central, 25 October Read more

Iran gives Christians 80 lashes for communion wine as UN blasts human rights record
They were among several Christians punished for their faith in a nation where converting from Islam to Christianity can bring the death penalty.
Fox News Network, 24 October Read more

Malaysia curbs on use of ‘Allah’ hurting moderate Muslim image
A Malaysian court ruled last week that the word was “not an integral part of the faith in Christianity”, overturning a previous ruling that allowed a Malay-language Roman Catholic newspaper to use the word.
Reuters, 23 October Read more

Muslims at Norway Conference Support Sharia Punishments
The “Peace Conference Scandinavia 2013,” was attended by 4,000 Muslims and featured nine speakers. One of the speakers explained that every one of the speakers – as well as the audience – would be labeled “extremists” by the media for believing in sharia punishments such as stoning of adulterers and homosexuals and believing that these practices should be implemented worldwide.
Clarion Project, 23 October Read more

Yemeni burns daughter to death for contacting fiance
A Yemeni father has burned his 15-year-old daughter to death for keeping in touch with her fiance, police said, sparking further outrage in Yemen, where an eight-year girl died from internal bleeding on her wedding night a month ago.
Reuters, 23 October Read more

Saudi Clerics Protest Women Driving, Blaming U.S. For Anti-Ban Campaign
Around 150 clerics and religious scholars have rallied outside the Saudi king’s palace, protesting against women seeking the right to drive.
The Huffington Post, 22 October Read more

In Latest Killing of Egypt’s Christians 2 Young Girls Slain
In its statement it blamed army intelligence for fueling a war against Islamists that only benefits “Christians and Jews.”
The Daily Beast, 22 October Read more

Egypt Christians mourn after wedding party shooting
…. gunmen the night before fired on a family wedding party with automatic weapons. His son, his wife’s sister and two granddaughters, ages 8 and 12, were killed.
USA TODAY, 22 October Read more

Pakistan polio outbreak puts global eradication at risk
Health teams in Pakistan have been attacked repeatedly since the Taliban denounced vaccines as a Western plot to sterilize Muslims and imposed bans on inoculation in June 2012.
Reuters, 18 October Read more

Nigeria Sharia Cops to Crack Down on ‘Indecent’ Dress
Law enforcement has orders to arrest anyone wearing “indecent dress” such as sleeveless T-shirts and pants that cut off just below the knee.
They’ll also be watching the city’s small, motorized rickshaw taxis for men and women traveling together.
CBNNews.com, 18 October Read more

Okay to say ‘Islamist militants’
The press ombudsman has declined a request to ban the use of the words “Islamist militants” and “militant Islam” from newspaper reports.
Times LIVE, 17 October Read more

Sacking of Turkish TV host over low-cut outfit spurs debate over religious influence
Gozde Kansu, 33, hostess of the music talent show Veliaht, or Heir to the Throne, at the private ATV channel, lost her job earlier this month, following condemnation from an aide to the prime minister.
The National, 16 October Read more

Honoring Muslim holidays means more days off for school kids
City kids can expect more breaks from school under the next administration, after both of the leading mayoral candidates agreed Wednesday that two major Muslim holidays deserve to be observed.
NEW YORK POST, 16 October Read more

Danes: We are too tolerant of Muslims
The public debates over banned Christmas trees, halal meat at schools and cashiers wearing headscarves appear to have made the Danish population more wary about giving their Muslim neighbours cultural concessions.
The Copenhagen Post, 15 October Read more

Saudi Women Drivers: Threat to State Religion and Politics
This pronouncement is in keeping with that of Iranian cleric, Hojatoleslam Kazim Sadeghi, who claimed that earthquakes were caused by women’s immodest dress, which led to promiscuity.
The Huffington Post, 15 October Read more

Malaysian court rules use of ‘Allah’ exclusive to Muslims
The unanimous decision by three Muslim judges in Malaysia’s appeals court overturned a 2009 ruling by a lower court that allowed the Malay-language version of the newspaper, The Herald, to use the word Allah – as many Christians in Malaysia say has been the case for centuries.
Reuters, 14 October Read more

Forced to wed at 14, woman walks out after years of abuse from violent husband
The Federal Circuit Court heard the bride’s mum pushed her into the Islamic ceremony, telling the then-teen she’d get to attend theme parks and movies and eat lollies and ice- cream with her new husband.
HERALD SUN, 14 October Read more

Top BBC Muslim broadcaster says no to Islamic dress code
One of Britain’s most high-profile Muslim woman broadcasters has spoken out against the post-9/11 Muslim fixation with “Islamic dress” after being publicly accosted by a “fellow Muslim” who complimented her on her work and then said: “But you’ll have to wear the hijab one day.” To which she replied firmly, “I don’t think so.”
Firstpost.com, 14 October Read more

Female teachers must cover face says Grand Mufti
He made the ruling following a request for advice from the Ministry of Education on the issue. It had said that some female teachers were veiling their faces while giving lessons but it felt that this was having a negative impact on students’ understanding because, by not seeing the teacher’s face, they were not able to interact and properly lean.
Libya Herald, 13 October Read more

Swedish Parents Furious Over Halal Meat In Schools
Schools in southern Sweden have been serving halal chicken in their school cafeterias for four years, but some students’ parents only recently found out and were furious at the news.
The Daily Meal, 13 October Read more

Saudi blogger detained, but she’s hopeful about campaign to allow women to drive
As a campaign for Saudi women to defy the driving ban in their country heats up, one of the country’s leading female bloggers was detained in Riyadh on Thursday after a woman she was with did just that.
CNN, 11 October Read more

Angry parents spark halal school lunch spat
The municipality’s schools are reported to have been serving the chicken, which originates from Denmark, for the past four years.
The Local Europe, 11 October Read more

Iran: Woman who converted to Christianity jailed
The court found Mariam Naqqash guilty of “endangering national security by spreading religious propaganda in the country”, the website reported.
AKI, 11 October Read more

Taliban warn shops against selling Malala’s book
“The Taliban will not lose an opportunity to kill Malala Yousufzai and those who were found selling her book will be targeted.”
DAWN.COM, 11 October Read more

Young poet threatened after TV appearance
After his appearance …. in which he criticised Muslim parents, Yahya Hassan, an 18-year old poet of Palestinian descent, has received more death threats than any other guest in the show’s history.
The Copenhagen Post, 10 October Read more

Turkey Cracks Down on Cleavage
How do you know whether a regime that frees women to wear Islamic headscarves at work is liberal and furthering democracy, or Islamist and restricting it?
The question concerns Turkey’s government, which in the space of a few days has ended a headscarf ban for civil servants (except in the judiciary and security services), but also caused a female TV music-show presenter to be fired for showing too much cleavage.
BLOOMBERG, 9 October Read more

Turkish TV presenter fired over low-cut dress after criticism from AKP spokesman
Çelik criticized the presenter’s costume during a TV program, without giving a name, saying he found the dress “extreme” because of its open cleavage. “We don’t intervene against anyone, but this is too much. It is unacceptable,” he said.
Hurriyet Daily News, 9 October Read more

Atheists outraged after students told to cover ‘offensive’ t-shirts with cartoon images of Jesus and Mohammed
The head of security and a member of the LSE’s legal and compliance team told the students they were creating an “offensive atmosphere” by wearing the t-shirts at a societies’ fair for new students.
National Post, 7 October Read more

Turkish President Gül warns of ‘Islamic Middle Age darkness’
…. a stark warning over the turmoil across the Middle East, saying ethnic and sectarian identity politics could presage an era of medieval darkness across the Muslim world similar to Europe’s Middle Ages.
The Hürriyet Daily News, 05 October Read more

Peshawar Church Attack Was According To Sharia
“…. we believe it’s according to the Sharia,” TTP spokesperson Shahidullah Shahid told BBC in a telephonic interview from an anonymous location on Friday.
Pakistan Tribune, 05 October Read more

UK Islamist group gets aggressive after speaker ban
Abdur Raheem Green and Hamza Tzortzis were this week stopped from appearing at the University of London following warnings from the Metropolitan Police.
Green has been criticised in the past for claiming that “Islam is not compatible with democracy” and that a husband may use “physical force… a very light beating” against his wife.
Trending Central, 05 October Read more

Bangladeshi Christians Told to Close Church, Convert to Islam
A local government official in central Bangladesh has halted the construction of a church, forced Christians to worship at a mosque and threatened them with eviction from their village unless they renounce their faith.
Charisma Media, 4 October Read more

Faith, politics clash over Muslim-run women’s gym in France
The gym, which opened last month in the up-market Paris suburb of Le Raincy, is owned by a French Muslim couple who say their religion and appearance – she wears a headscarf and he a long beard – are the reason the mayor wants to shut them down.
Reuters, 4 October Read more

A woman can be whipped in Sudan for violating ‘public decency’ laws, including wearing in pants or uncovering her hair
Sudanese human rights activists have posted a video online of a public whipping of a woman conducted by Sudanese police. The women’s crime, according to the police was getting into a car with with a man other than an immediate family member, a violation of Sudan’s “public decency” law.
Clarion Project, 3 October Read more

Halal: Secretly Shoving Sharia Islamic Law Down Your Throat
…. Islamic Sharia Law is being introduced into Western society via Halal food. …. If a company wants to cater to this minority customer, fine … it’s a free market. BUT, to keep the majority of their customers in the dark …. is repugnant.
Church and State, 2 October Read more

Arab blasphemy law being drafted – Law would empower countries to file cases against non-resident violators
Under its provisions, all forms of defamation, derision or denigration of religions and prophets will be considered crimes.
Gulf News, 2 October Read more

September 2013

Ministry warns students against mocking Islam
The Ministry of Education has warned that it would expel any student found mocking Islam or spreading illicit ideas at school. Penalties for violating the code of behavior include preventing a student from pursuing studies for one academic year.
Arab News, 30 September Read more

School cancels Muslim proselytizing in class
…. Looking deeper into the curriculum, she found the video to which her son had been exposed. She asked the district to remove it and find one that was objective and relevant, “not one that taught children how to become a Muslim.”
WND, 29 September Read more

Surprising number of Post readers support Quebec’s Charter of Values
Quebec’s proposed secularist Charter of Values has not proven to be popular with pundits — but a surprising number of National Post readers like it. That became evident as readers answered this week’s Letters-page question: “Do you support Quebec’s proposed ban on religious symbols in the workplace?”
National Post, 28 September Read more

There are uncomfortable facts to be faced on immigration
…. Shootings in Sydney suburbs with big Muslim populations are so common that police created a Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad.
All this — and high rates of welfare dependency — suggests we should better integrate the nearly 500,000 Muslims we have already before admitting many more.
HERALD SUN, 26 September Read more

Pork Politics: Why Some Danes Want Pig Meat Required On Menus
…. “at least 30” day cares had dropped pork from their menus so that children from different ethnic and religious backgrounds (primarily Muslim) would not have to queue up in different lunch lines. But 844 comments later, it became clear that many Danes thought this was a bad idea.
NPR, 25 September Read more

Southern Swiss voters back ban on full-face veils
Campaigner Giorgio Ghiringhelli, who drew up the proposal, said the result would send a message to “Islamist fundamentalists” he said were in Ticino and across Switzerland.
“Those who want to integrate are welcome irrespective of their religion,” he said in a statement on the website ilguastafeste.ch.
Reuters, 24 September Read more

Abercrombie settles law suits over headscarves
The agreement comes three weeks after a federal judge ruled that Abercrombie & Fitch violated the religious rights of one of the women, Hani Khan, by firing her after she refused to remove the hijab she wore while working as a stockroom clerk at the retailer’s Hollister Co. outlet in San Mateo.
San Francisco Chronicle, 23 September Read more

Ticino voters back ban on wearing face veils
Results from a referendum in the southern canton of Ticino showed that 65 percent of the electorate backed a proposal to forbid the covering of faces in public areas by any group.
The Local Europe, 22 September Read more

Muslim groups oppose ban on child marriage
Criticising the Child Marriage (Prevention) Act, which made marriage of girls below the age 18 an offence, speakers at the meeting said the law violated religious rights of the Muslim community since the Muslim personal law did not specify the age for marriage of girls in the community.
The Hindu, 22 September Read more

Saudi Arabian women call new day of defiance against driving ban
An online petition entitled “Oct 26th, driving for women” had on Sunday gathered more than 5,800 signatories, as activists try again to push authorities to end the unique ban.
Agence France-Presse, 22 September Read more

A Veiled Debate
Muslims in Europe enjoy a level of religious toleration that Christians, to say nothing of Jews, could only dream of in most of the Islamic world. Underlying the veil debate is the lingering question that many would rather not ask openly, which is whether those who demand tolerance in the name of Islam would extend the same tolerance in return.
The Wall Street Journal, 18 September Read more

The silence of secularists: how the Left-Islamist alliance is winning
…. Where does this leave Birmingham Metropolitan College? The original prohibition concerned “hoodies, hats, caps and veils”. The subsequent reversal permits only “specific items of personal clothing to reflect their cultural values”, which sounds suspiciously as if facial covering is still beyond the pale, but an exception will be made for anyone invoking an extreme interpretation of Islam.
Trending Central, 18 September Read more

Turkish pianist Fazil Say gets jail term for ‘religiously offensive’ tweets about Muslims
AN ISTANBUL court has handed a 10-month suspended jail term to world-renowned Turkish pianist Fazil Say for a second time in a retrial over social media posts deemed religiously offensive.
AFP, 20 September Read more

Pakistani clerics suggest amendment to blasphemy laws
…. Blasphemy is an extremely sensitive issue in Pakistan, where 97 percent of the population is Muslim, and insulting the Prophet Mohammed can be punished by death under the country’s penal code. …. The country’s Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) suggested the government should bring in the death penalty for people convicted of making false accusations of blasphemy.
AFP, 18 September Read more

Judge orders lawyer to remove headscarf
The lawyer, who has not been named, was told by a judge three times that she was not allowed to wear a headscarf in court. …. Reasoning behind the request was that lawyers should present themselves as “an organ of the legal system”. State sector workers are also supposed to show religious neutrality but criticis argue the lawyer is not a state worker so should not have to show religious neutrality.
The Local Europe, 17 September Read more

Yemen Urged To Commute Thief’s Amputation Sentence By Amnesty International
A Sanaa court on Sunday ordered the amputation of the right hand and the left foot of a man found guilty of attacking another man and robbing him of cash he was transporting in a vehicle belonging to a money exchange firm.
Agence France Presse, 17 September Read more

Kuwait Funding Muslim Brotherhood Growth in Western Mosques
…. Based in the UK, the Europe Trust is funded largely by Kuwait (with help from the UAE-based Makhtoum Foundation, about which, more later), and, according to the Middle East Quarterly, “channels money from the Persian Gulf to groups sympathetic to the Brotherhood in Europe, primarily to build mosques.”
IPT News, 13 September Read more

Quebec releases controversial ‘values charter,’ proposes that anyone giving, receiving public services would need face uncovered
…. And it wants to make it mandatory to have one’s face uncovered while providing or receiving a state service. Quebec will also try to shield its new Charter of Quebec Values from legal challenges by entrenching the concept of religious neutrality in the Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
National Post, 13 September Read more

German court rules Muslim girls must join swimming classes
The decision by Germany’s top court for public and administrative disputes signals that the state’s constitutional obligation to educate children can take precedence over customs and practices linked to an individual’s religious beliefs.
Reuters, 11 September Read more

‘Far too few dare criticize Islam’: Abba star
Abba legend Björn Ulvaeus has made veiled criticisms of Islam in a wide-ranging interview with the Wall Street Journal saying “less religion in the world would be better”. “Look at all the misery in the Middle East for example. All these countries have Islam in common, and far too few dare to criticize Islam as an ideology, and what it’s doing to these countries”.
The Local Europe, 11 September Read more

Deoband issues fatwa banning photography as un-Islamic
Mufti Abdul Qasim Nomani, Mohtamim (Vice-Chancellor) of Darul Uloom Deoband, said on the phone, “Photography is un-Islamic. Muslims are not allowed to get their photos clicked unless it is for an identity card or for making a passport.”
THE TIMES OF INDIA, 11 September Read more

Nordic anger over immigration fuels populist vote
From spats over halal meat in Danish schools to asylum seekers in Sweden, anger about immigration has fuelled the march of populist parties across Nordic countries, leading one such group to the brink of government in prosperous Norway.
Reuters, 10 September Read more

Why a secular charter is good for Quebec
Following up on an electoral promise, the Quebec government recently announced its intention to adopt a charter which would prohibit the wearing of obvious religious symbols in the public service. This is very good news.
The Globe and Mail, 10 September Read more

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood to Coptic Christians: Convert to Islam, or pay ‘jizya’ tax
The Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters have began forcing the roughly 15,000 Christian Copts of Dalga village in Egypt to pay a jizya tax as indicated in Koran 9:29, author and translator Raymond Ibrahim reported on Sunday.
The Washington Times, 10 September Read more

New survey suggests growing support for Quebec secular charter
The survey conducted by SOM, one of the largest survey firms in Quebec, pegs support for a secular charter that would ban religious symbols for public employees at 66 per cent.
CBC, 10 September Read more

Polls put Wilders’ PVV out on top, Labour slumps to record low
[A READER’S COMMENT] You can’t fool all of the people all of the time. More and more Nederlanders are waking up to the fact that the politicians of the Old Gang have been giving away their birth-right for decades.
How anyone (except immigrants) can vote for any party other than the PVV is beyond me. Do they really want the Dutch to be out-numbered in their ancestral homeland by 3rd World colonists? Do they really want to be ruled by Shariah? Are they quite insane or just brainwashed?
DutchNews.nl, 9 September Read more

Four Bangladesh bloggers charged with defaming Islam
Four Bangladeshi bloggers are facing up to seven years in jail after they were charged in court Sunday with defaming Islam and the Prophet Mohammed, a prosecutor told AFP.
“They have been indicted… with defaming Islam, the Prophet Mohammed and other religions through their Internet writings. They spread malice against all religions,” he said.
AL ARABIYA NEWS, 8 September Read more

Don’t surrender Islam to the Islamists
As a Muslim, I refuse to give up Islam to the Islamists. So should others who believe in a deeply pluralistic Islam of the sort my Indian-born grandparents taught.
[A READER’S COMMENT] Moderate Muslims may be pushing for something their basic religion is intolerant towards. That is: the concept of respectful religious diversity. Throughout Muslim history those not Muslim in Muslim countries have had to endure a second-class existence called “Dhimmitude” which seems to many to be engrained in Islam from the Koran and Islamic Traditions.
USA TODAY, 5 September Read more

Hamburg Walmart manager fired over anti-Muslim posting
The derogatory posting on Friday morning was brought to the attention of Wal-Mart Stores executives by a member of the local Muslim community and by a national Muslim advocacy organization.
The Buffalo News, 4 September Read more

Indonesia’s rising intolerance
…. the situation in Indonesia has become increasingly menacing for religious minorities. On August 4, a bomb planted by unknown perpetrators exploded inside a Buddhist temple in downtown Jakarta while congregants worshipped, injuring three men.
Human Rights Watch, 3 September Read more

August 2013

Egyptian Christian Leader: ‘Shame on Obama’
Following the recent barrage of church burnings, Father Rafic Greiche, the chief spokesman for the Catholic Church in Egypt, criticized President Obama for not speaking out against the worst violence against Egyptian Christians in nearly 700 years.
CBNNews, 31 August Read more

Burqa ‘a sign of oppression’
A Liberal candidate in a western Sydney electorate where nearly half of voters were born overseas used his campaign launch to urge an end to Muslim women wearing the burqa, drawing a link between the Islamic tradition and criminality.
The Age, 30 August Read more

Christian Woman in Pakistan Beaten, Sentenced to Death ‘For Being Thirsty’
The Muslim women objected to Bibi, a Christian, drinking out of the same metal cup as them, arguing that it was “haram,” or the Islamic term for anything forbidden by God.
CHRISTIAN POST, 30 August Read more

Islamic leaders in India issue fatwa against cartoons
The ban stems from religious leaders at Darul Uloom seminary in the India community of Deoband, BBC reported. It encompasses all animated shows, even those with comedic tones, such as cartoons, saying such watching violates the basic principles of Islam, the Deccan Herald reported.
The Washington Times, 29 August Read more

Yemeni ‘Gay’ Man Killed By Suspected Al Qaeda Gunmen
…. the man was targeted because the attackers thought he was a homosexual.
Another four men have been killed in similar attacks on supposedly gay men in Huta this year.
Agence France Presse, 29 August Read more

Stoning is good for your soul, says Canadian cleric
A YouTube video featuring an insightful look at the ideas of the Brampton, Ont., preacher who stated that “sinners,” as defined by his own interpretation of Islamic law, can benefit from a jolly good stoning was running all day until it was belatedly taken down.
The sheikh explained that a Muslim who is sentenced to death by stoning under Sharia law actually benefits from this gruesome punishment as her soul is being purified even as the stones rain down on her sinful head.
Sun News, 28 August Read more

Quebec Muslims speak out against French Islamists
A conference called “Between Heaven and Earth” …. in Montreal, has stirred controversy in the French-speaking Canadian province of Quebec, with several people protesting against the expected presence of radical Muslims from Europe.
“These [radical] preachers express values that are totally contradictory to the principles of equality between men and women that we protect in Quebec,” Maltais said via a statement.
FRANCE 24, 27 August Read more

What’s wrong with Pakistan?
You may think winning an international peace prize, being nominated for the Nobel peace prize and giving a speech at the United Nations would be a cause for celebration. It is nearly universally so. Except in Pakistan of course.
…. the country has drifted further and further towards Islamism with the result being a Pakistani identity shaped by its opposition to all things non-Muslim, non-Western and most of all: non-Pakistani.
Trending Central, 27 August Read more

Proposed ban on religious symbols proving popular in Quebec
Quebec’s proposed ban on the wearing of religious symbols has drawn criticism from across the country, but a new poll suggests it has strong support in the province.
Toronto Star, 26 August Read more

Ex-Imam Akkari in Copenhagen says: “All Danish Mosques are Run by Extremists”
Akkari should know that as he was one of the two Danish Imams who stoked the fires of the Jyllands-Posten Mohammed cartoons controversy by traveling to the Middle East following their publication.
The Iconoclast, 23 August Read more

‘Islam destroys democracy in France’
France’s Interior Minister Manuel Valls said that there was a need to review the country’s migration policy in relation to Africans and questioned the compatibility of Islam and democracy.
PRAVDA.Ru, 23 August Read more

Adelaide mosque preacher directs fury at Buddhists, Hindus, Howard and Obama
An Adelaide Islamic preacher is under police investigation after he was filmed calling for all Buddhists and Hindus to be killed.
Advertiser.com.au, 23 August Read more

Cut into pieces: ‘She challenged God’s orders’
A cleric cut his wife into pieces on Wednesday for refusing to wear a veil and sending their children to school, police said.
The Express Tribune, 22 August Read more

Alarming Views of the Muslim Brotherhood on the Rights Of Women That Should Shame Their Apparent Western ‘Progressive’ Sympathisers
The public admission of the Muslim Brotherhoods views on Women’s rights came after the 57th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) that met in March of this year. They were opposed to ratifying the Declaration to End Violence Against Women for the following remarkable reasons (1):
ICLA, 22 August Read more

Maldives: Girl rape victim to be spared outrageous flogging sentence
A Maldives High Court today quashed a sentence of 100 lashes and house arrest against a 15-year old girl for the “offence” of extra-marital sex. The girl, who was convicted of “fornication” in February this year, had reportedly also been sexually abused repeatedly by her step father.
Amnesty International, 21 August Read more

Arrested For Bible Distribution In Iran
An Iranian Christian convert has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for distributing Bibles in his home country, the Vatican missionary news agency Fides reported on Wednesday.
Agence France Presse, 21 August Read more

Egypt’s political strife puts Christians in peril
By the time he reached the town on Sunday, about 20 houses had been burned. An ancient monastery was smashed and ransacked. One of his parishioners, a 60-year-old barber named Iskander Tous, had been killed in the chaos.
Reuters, 20 August Read more

Egypt: ‘unprecedented’ rise in sectarian attacks on Coptic Christians must be stopped
Amnesty International is calling for the Egyptian authorities to take immediate steps to ensure the safety of Egypt’s Coptic Christians after an unprecedented rise in sectarian violence across the country.
Amnesty International, 20 August Read more

Egypt’s Islamists target Christian churches, schools in backlash as chaos spreads
After torching a Franciscan school, Islamists paraded three nuns on the streets like “prisoners of war” before a Muslim woman offered them refuge. Two other women working at the school were sexually harassed and abused as they fought their way through a mob.
The Washington Post, 18 August Read more

Egypt’s Christians face unprecedented attacks
Mina Thabet, an activist with Christian rights group the Maspero Youth Union, told Al Jazeera on Friday that at least 32 churches had been “completely destroyed, burned or looted” in eight different governorates over the previous two days. The group also recorded dozens of other attacks on Christian-owned shops, businesses and schools around the country.
Al Jazeera, 16 August Read more

Indonesian president worried by growing religious intolerance
Indonesia has recently seen a series of increasingly violent attacks on religious minorities like Christians, Shia Muslims and members of Ahmadiyah, a small Islamic sect which is considered heretical by mainstream Muslims.
Reuters, 16 August Read more

Tennessee grade school lifts ban on pork after parents raise stink
Whatever the reason, “a Tennessee elementary school banned students from eating ham sandwiches, BLT’s and anything else made with pork,” Fox News’s Todd Starnes reports, adding that the school “eventually lifted the ban after parents complained.”
Examiner.com, 16 August Read more

Why Did a Tennessee Grade School Ban Pork?
“No meats containing pork,” read the memorandum. …. your child must provide their own snack from the above approved snack list.”
Todd Starnes, 15 August Read more

Sufi Muslims Feel the Heat of Indonesia’s Rising Intolerance
The school, a private institution that instructed dozens of students 8 to 25 years of age in the principles of Sufism — devotion to more mystical interpretations of Islam — lost its dormitory on July 5 due to an apparent arson attack.
THE JAKARTA GLOBE, 15 August Read more

Helle on halal: “We shouldn’t lose sight of our own culture”
Danes should only go so far to accommodate religious customs. …. Thorning-Schmidt said that she is opposed to the suggestion to remove all pork products from daycares.
The Copenhagen Post, 12 August Read more

Calls for more stringent laws to deter insults against Islam
The Pertubuhan Penyatuan Pembelaan Melayu Malaysia (PPPMM) today urged the government to enact a more stringent law that will deter individuals from belittling Islam.
Sun Media Corporation, 12 August Read more

Religion does not trump our nation’s laws
…. the situation at one of Australia’s biggest Islamic schools – the Islamic College of South Australia – where the dress code requires that all female teachers must wear head scarves. One teacher has taken court action for unfair dismissal over her failure to abide by the rule.
SUNDAY HERALD SUN, 10 August Read more

In surprise reversal, Danish Muslim leader regrets role in rage over Muhammad cartoons
…. Dozens were killed in weeks of protests that included violent attacks against Danish missions in Syria, Iran, Afghanistan and Lebanon. Tiny Denmark found itself on a collision course with the Muslim world — something Akkari now regrets.
He said he’s still a practicing Muslim but started doubting his fundamentalist beliefs after a 2007 trip to Lebanon, where he met Islamist leaders. “I was shocked. I realized what an oppressive mentality they have,” Akkari said.
The Washington Post, 9 August Read more

Blasphemy, the ‘crime’ that cannot be spoken
Recently the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom released a report detailing Pakistan’s history of violence against religious freedom.
The findings are deeply troubling – in just the last 18 months, the commission documented 203 incidents of violence in the name of religion, resulting in some 1,800 casualties and more than 700 deaths.
The Washington Post, 7 August Read more

‘Iran Christian Sentenced To 10 Years Jail For Evangelical Activities’
An Iranian Christian convert has been sentenced to 10 years imprisonment on what his supporters say are false charges linked to his evangelical church activities.
BosNewsLife, 6 August Read more

Britain’s Part-Time Wives
Aisha laughs out loud at the thought of how her colleagues and clients would react if they knew she shares a husband. The laughter makes her loose hijab slip slightly, exposing a few strands of dark hair. “They would be dumbfounded and probably prurient,” she sniffs.
Daily Beast, 5 August Read more

More states move to ban foreign law in courts
North Carolina last month became the seventh state to pass legislation barring judges from considering foreign law in their decisions, including sharia.
Six other states — Arizona, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Tennessee — have already enacted similar legislation since 2010, and at least 25 have introduced such measures, according to the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project.
USA TODAY, 4 August Read more

Algerians protest against mandatory fasting
About 300 people in a restive northern region of Algeria have joined a public lunch during Ramadan to protest against what they say is persecution of people who refuse to observe the religious fast.
Al Jazeera, 4 August Read more

Al-Qaeda leader says Egypt coup proof that Islamic rule cannot come through democracy
Al-Qaeda’s leader said Egypt’s military coup that ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi provides proof that Islamic rule cannot be established through democracy, and urged the Islamist leader’s followers to abandon the ballot box in favour of armed resistance.
Associated Press, 3 August Read more

Unveiling Female Muslim Teachers So Students See Their Lips
“This is to promote better teacher-pupil relationship, and to support effective language teaching since seeing the teacher’s lips helps in the correct production of letter sounds,” Luistro said.
Scoop Media, 2 August Read more

600 Lashes for Raif Badawi: Saudi Arabia’s Latest Savagery
Islamic authorities sentenced a liberal journalist to 600 lashes and seven years in prison, after he questioned the role of religion.
The Daily Beast, 2 August Read more

Muslim Nigerian Senator: Age is Not a Defining Factor in Marriage
“And once she is married, she is of full age. And that is why the constitution recognises Islamic law and made that provision. So if you say you are going to remove that provision, you are going against and counter to Islamic law.
“So under Sharia law, any country that practices Sharia, age is not a defining factor for marriage.”…
Assyrian International News Agency, 1 August Read more

1,000 Pakistani clerics seek pardon for Governor’s assassin
…. an anti-terrorism court awarded the death penalty to Qadri, an Elite Force commando, for gunning down Taseer in Islamabad.
The policeman, who was part of Taseer’s security detail, confessed to the murder and said he was angered by Taseer’s calls for changes in Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy law.
Business Standard, 1 August Read more

Egyptian Muslim cleric offers instructions on proper way to beat one’s wife: never harshly and with a simple object like a pen
“The beating should not lead to breaking her arm or a tooth. He should avoid this, because the Prophet [Mohammed] urged us and told us that when you beat someone, you should never beat him or her on his or her face. This is because the face is owned by Allah,” he added.
TheBlaze, 1 August Read more

July 2013

Pakistan’s Sectarian Meltdown
Shias and other minority communities are assaulted in their homes, at their centers of worship, in recreation centers and on public buses. In 2011, Pakistan’s minority-affairs minister, a Christian, was gunned down in his car in broad daylight.
The National Interest, 31 July Read more

Saudi website editor gets seven years in prison and 600 lashes for liberal forum
Raif Badawi, who started the “Free Saudi Liberals” website to discuss the role of religion in Saudi Arabia, has been held since June 2012 on charges of cyber crime and disobeying his father – a crime in the conservative kingdom and top U.S. ally.
Al-Watan newspaper said the judge had also ordered the closure of the website.
Reuters, 30 July Read more

Leading imam during Cartoon Crisis regrets involvement
…. Akkari’s days as an imam are now behind him and he says that he is “no longer a part of the Islamic mission”. He further claims that many of his former colleagues are hypocrites with a mindset that is “horribly wrong”.
The Copenhagen Post, 30 July Read more

Police force university to cancel Muslim feminist lecture
Amina Wadud, an Islamic feminist, was due to deliver a lecture on ‘Gender and Reform in Islam’ at the University of Madras in Chennai, India, when she was informed by the unversity’s vice chancellor that local police had informed him to cancel the event.
Trending Central, 30 July Read more

Sharia Law In The USA 101: A Guide To What It Is And Why States Want To Ban It
The bills all cite “foreign laws” because two federal courts have ruled that singling out Shariah — as Oklahoma voters originally did in 2010 — is unconstitutional. So what’s the big deal with Shariah?
[A READER’S COMMENT] In case you’ve been secreted under a rock for the last 200+ yrs. you might know that this country was predicated on a separation of church and state, no state religion. You will not explain, I’m certain, why under sharia law a rapist goes free and the poor, unfortunate victim receives a 12 yr. sentence.
The Huffington Post, 29 July Read more

Saudi Website Founder to be Imprisoned, Lashed
The Free Saudi Liberals website was an online forum for public discussions. It was shut following Badawi’s arrest, and it had been blocked within the country for years. In today’s sentence, the judge also ordered the permanent shutdown of the website:
Global Voices, 29 July Read more

Caught on video: Indian Mufti enjoys music despite calling it ‘un-Islamic’
A video clip of the Grand Mufti of Kashmir enjoying Kashmiri ghazals, musical poems and Punjabi folk tunes, has gone viral on YouTube this week, after it was revealed that it was the same man who branded muslic as “un-Islamic.”
Al Arabiya, 29 July Read more

Those who want secularism in Iran are ‘seditionists’, judiciary chief warns
Iranians claiming to be moderates who seek ‘western democracy and secularism’ are guilty of sedition and have no future in the regime, the country’s head of judiciary chief has warned.
NCRI, 28 July Read more

The storm in the kebab shop: The great halal debate returns
…. the tabloid Ekstra Bladet reported that almost all Danish chickens are halal …. that Hvidovre Hospital has only served halal meat for the past decade and that several daycares in Greater Copenhagen have opted to stop serving pork and only serve halal meat.
The Copenhagen Post, 26 July Read more

For INSULTING ISLAM, pageant contestants may be next in line to be charged
The four Muslim women who disputed the National Fatwa Council decision banning Muslim women from participating in beauty pageants can be charged in the Syariah Court.
Malaysia Chronicle, 25 July Read more

Surgery center for Muslims drops religious label
A Chicago doctor who proposed opening the state’s first “Shariah-compliant” surgery center is dropping references to Islamic law, a bid to reduce confusion — and controversy — about the plan.
Crain Communications, 26 July Read more

Presence of pregnant women in public is ‘disgraceful,’ says Turkish lawyer
“Announcing pregnancy with a flourish of trumpets is against our civility. [The]Y should not wander on the streets with such bellies.
Hurriyet Daily News, 25 July Read more

Security forces abandon Coptic Christians during deadly attack in Luxor
During the sectarian violence, security forces left six besieged men – four of whom were then killed and one hospitalized – to the mercy of an angry crowd.
Amnesty International, 23 July Read more

Fasting month, so pupils told to take recess meals in bathroom
A decision by a primary school administration to order its non-Muslim pupils to have their meals during recess in what appears to be the school’s shower room has gone viral and angered netizens.
Malaysia Edition, 23 July Read more

Yemeni girl’s speech against child marriage goes viral
A video of an 11-year-old Yemeni girl’s account of escaping her arranged marriage has gone viral. In the 3-minute clip, Nada al-Ahdal says she would rather die than get married at her age and calls the potential marriage “criminal.”
Al Jazeera, 23 July Read more

Fatwa prohibits 4 Muslim finalists from taking part in beauty pageant
Four Muslim finalists have been dropped from the Miss Malaysia World 2013 pageant due to a fatwa banning them from joining such events.
The Star/Asia News Network, 22 July Read more

Malaysian Muslims ask Vatican to recall envoy over use of “Allah”
The Vatican’s first envoy to Muslim-majority Malaysia should quit and go back to Rome, angry Malaysian Islamists said after the Roman Catholic cleric said Christians may use the Arabic word “Allah” to describe God.
The Washington Post, 22 July Read more

Afghan Religious Leader Approves Of Restrictive Edict On Women
Among the edicts was a ban on women leaving their homes without a male companion and another that banned the sale of cosmetics on the basis that they are “un-Islamic” and promote adultery.
Radio Free Europe, 22 July Read more

5 injured in clashes at burka riot outside Paris
About 250 people hurling projectiles clashed with police firing tear gas west of Paris, in apparent protest over enforcement of France’s ban on Islamic face veils. Five people were injured and six detained in the violence, authorities said Saturday.
AP, 20 July Read more

No compromise on individuals mocking religion
…. stern action would be taken against perpetrators, if it was proven that social websites were used to touch on religious sensitivities, resulting in anger and unrest among believers. According to him, the arrest of controversial couple Alvin Tan and Vivian Lee was a reminder that matters touching on religions could not be brought to ridicule.
The New Straits Times, 20 July Read more

Aceh, increasing intolerance against Christians: 17 house churches closed
The Islamist pressures against Christian communities in Aceh “have become intolerable. Within a year, with non-existent legal pretexts, 17 house churches have been closed: these also include Catholic chapels.
AsiaNews, 18 July Read more

“Let America And Britain Hate The Caliphate; Let Britain, America, And The Entire West Go To Hell, Because The Caliphate Is Coming, Allah Willing”
In an address at a symposium in Jordan marking the 92nd anniversary of the fall of the Islamic Caliphate, Prof. Mohammed Malkawi, the founder of Hizb Al-Tahrir in Chicago, stated that when the Caliphate was destroyed the world lost “an exemplar of justice, a model for humanity in its entirety.”
The Iconoclast, 16 July Read more

Pakistani man given life sentence on blasphemy charge, despite lack of evidence
Sajjad Gill, a Seventh Day Adventist, was tried under the country’s draconian blasphemy law after he was accused by a neighbor. The messages were sent from an unregistered phone, and Gill’s own phone, which was examined by police, showed that it had not been the source of the messages. Nevertheless the court found him guilty.
CatholicCulture.org, 15 July Read more

Malaysia’s ‘Galloping Islamization’
In Malaysia, the tone of the anti-Christian campaign has become shriller. One of the new government’s first moves was to amend the Administration of Islamic Law so that consent from only one parent or guardian was required for a child to be converted to Islam.
UCAnews, 15 July Read more

Popular U.S. Imam: Constitution Inferior to Sharia
…. the message they heard from one prominent speaker was particularly offensive in light of the holiday: The U.S. Constitution is inferior to Islamic Sharia Law.
Clarion Project, 14 July Read more

The Myth of Spain’s Islamic Golden Age
…. the opulence and prosperity of Spain during these years is contrasted very favorably with the poverty and ignorance of Christian Europe in the same period.
The Iconoclast, 9 July Read more

Saudi to expel foreigners disrespecting Ramadan
“Non-Muslim residents in the kingdom must not eat or drink in public during Ramadan, in respect to the holiness of Ramadan and the feelings of Muslims,” said an interior ministry statement published by the official SPA news agency.
AFP, 9 July Read more

Temporary marriage becomes popular among young UK Muslims
Omar Ali Grant, a convert to Islam from London, told the programme he has had around 13 temporary marriages but argued that he was just trying to find the right person to spend his life with.
The News International, 9 July Read more

Venstre to unhappy Muslims: “Find somewhere else to live”
Muslims who show no interest in adopting Danish values ought to think about why they settled in Denmark in the first place, the immigration spokesperson for leading opposition party Venstre argued.
The Copenhagen Post, 8 July Read more

Christian Convert Tried in Tehran
…. The court announced his charges as “illegal gathering and participating in a house church”. …. a member of Iranian Human Rights Commission says, if Mr. Bordbar is found guilty, he can be sentenced to anywhere from 2 to 10 years in prison.
MohabatNews, 8 July Read more

June 2013

Blasphemy convict: Aasia Bibi’s appeal at least two years away
The case attracted the attention of then Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer, who visited Bibi in jail and denounced her conviction as well as the blasphemy law. A couple of months later, Taseer – and any hope Aasia Bibi had of a quick release was killed in a hail of bullets fired by his own bodyguard.
The Express Tribune, 29 June Read more

Lynching of Shia Follows Months of Hate Speech – Police Fail to Protect Muslim Minority
The lynching of four Shia by a mob apparently led by Salafi sheikhs in the village of Abu Musallim in Greater Cairo …. came after months of anti-Shia hate speech at times involving the ruling Muslim Brotherhood and its political party, Human Rights Watch said today.
Human Rights Watch, 27 June Read more

Saudi police stop wedding in park
“A source in the Commission said the wedding was stopped because it violated local traditions as the bride was not covering her face and the groom was holding her hand and hugging her sometimes,” Ajel newspaper said.
Emirates247.com, 27 June Read more

Religious oppression rises despite Arab Spring
People who hoped the Arab Spring would lead to greater religious freedom across the Middle East have been sorely disappointed, and a new Pew study confirms that the region has grown even more repressive for various religious groups.
The Washington Post, 20 June Read more

Egypt’s Coptic Christians say they are ‘no longer safe’
Thousands of Egypt’s Coptic Christians are fleeing to Europe, the United States and elsewhere rather than face mounting discrimination at home.
NBC News, 20 June Read more

Third of teens in Amman, Jordan, condone honor killings, study says
Almost half of boys and one in five girls in Jordan’s capital city, Amman, believe that killing a woman who has “dishonored,” or shamed, her family is justifiable, a study of teenagers’ attitudes published Thursday revealed.
CNN, 20 June Read more

Christians Sentenced to Prison as ‘Moderate’ Comes to Power in Iran
…. The Revolutionary Court …. issued prison sentences of 44 months to Mojtaba Seyyed-Alaedin Hossein, Mohammad-Reza Partoei, Vahid Hakkani, and Homayoun Shokouhi for “attending a house church, spreading Christianity, having contact with foreign ministries, propaganda against the regime, and disrupting national security,” according the Mohabat News Agency.
Morning Star News, 19 June Read more

NY Times ‘Model Muslim’ Endorses Sharia for America
…. “If only Muslims were clever politically, they could take over the United States and replace its constitutional government with a caliphate. If we were united and strong, we’d elect our own emir and give allegiance to him. Take my word, if eight million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us.”
Clarion Project, 19 June Read more

Christendom’s Greatest Cathedral to Become a Mosque
…. Turkey’s Hagia Sophia museum is on its way to becoming a mosque.
Why does the fate of an old building matter?
Middle east Forum, 18 June Read more

Free Speech Goes Down in Defeat Down Under
…. the outrage and disciplinary threats provoked by the school newspaper’s mocking of Islam suggests that this faith shall enjoy a privileged position among all beliefs.

Magistrate questions whether Islamic woman should wear full-face burqa in Brisbane court
A MAGISTRATE has questioned whether a Saudi woman appearing in court should have been allowed to wear “a full burqa” or face covering, telling her “this is an Australian court”.
THE COURIER-MAIL, 13 June Read more

“If you criticize Islam, you will suffer consequences”
When Islam or the Prophet Muhammad are criticized or vilified, the whole Islamic world may get into an uproar. Islamic leaders worldwide are seeking to make any negative comment about their religion criminalized.
Citizen Times, 13 June Read more

Mob Attacks Afghan Doctor and Female Patient
A mob attacked an Afghan medical doctor and his female patient, stoning the doctor after the two were discovered in his private examining room without a chaperon, Afghan officials said on Thursday.
The New York Times, 13 June Read more

German author in hiding after receiving Islamist death threats
The calls for the author to be killed apparently came after a speech he gave in Cairo last week in which he criticized radical Islam and Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, accusing them of spreading “religious fascism.”
Deutsche Welle, 11 June Read more

Egyptian Christian Teacher Convicted of Blasphemy, Receives 14K Fine
An Egyptian Christian teacher has been convicted of insulting Islam, receiving a large fine instead of being sentenced to jail time. …. her verdict, which found her guilty of insulting Islam in an incident back in May and sentenced her to pay a fine of 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($14,000).
Christian Post, 11 June Read more

Pope Urged to Declare Islam a Peaceful Religion
“A clear denunciation of Muslim sectarian violence against Christians in Egypt by Sunni religious leaders would be welcomed as Al-Azhar seeks the Pope’s endorsement of Muslim non-violence.”
CNSNews.com, 11 June Read more

Christians face being driven from the Middle East
The Arab Spring has turned to bitter mid-winter for Christians across the Middle East.
Members of orthodox faiths are being driven from their biblical heartlands by hard line Muslim governments with no toleration of religious diversity.
TORONTO SUN, 10 June Read more

Egyptian author appeals for protection following Islamist threats
A Germany-based Egyptian author has requested protection from Egyptian authorities after ultra-conservative Islamists in Egypt declared him an “apostate” and launched an online campaign calling for his death.
Ahram Online, 10 June Read more

Afghan parliament upholds right to marry children
Afghanistan’s parliament has rejected a measure that would have barred men from marrying girls younger than 16, saying the proposal ran counter to Islamic ideology.
The Washington Times, 10 June Read more

‘Sharia’ sets off alarms in Canada. Here are the facts
…. in Pakistan, Jordan, Egypt, Malaysia, Afghanistan and other countries, more than two out of three Muslims who say shariah should be the law of the land “favour the death penalty” for those who convert to another religion.
Vancouver Sun, 8 June Read more

Mending Vatican ties: Al-Azhar wants pope to declare Islam peaceful
An envoy from Al-Azhar in Cairo, raised the prospect of restoring ties with the Vatican yesterday but called on Pope Francis to take “a step forward” by declaring that Islam is a peaceful religion.
Arab News, 8 June Read more

Afghanistan: Women in parliament receive threats – from fellow lawmakers
“A [male] member of parliament stood up in our general meeting yesterday and said parliament is not a place for women, your time is up here, you must not pursue this fight for women’s rights,” says Ms. Barakzai.
The Christian Science Monitor, 8 June Read more

Mending Vatican ties: Al-Azhar wants pope to declare Islam peaceful
“Francis is a new pope. We are expecting a step forward from him. If in one of his addresses he were to declare that Islam is a peaceful religion, that Muslims are not looking for war or violence, that would be progress in itself,” he said.
Arab News, 8 June Read more

Saudi Women More Educated Than Men Are Wasted Resource
When Saudi recruiter Tariq Alkahily interviews female job applicants, one of the first questions they usually ask is: Will I be required to mix with men at work?
BLOOMBERG, 4 June Read more

Egyptian Court Delays Sentencing of Coptic Teacher Charged with Blashphemy
The coordinator of Luxor’s Islamist Lawyers League submitted a complaint against the Coptic teacher accusing her of insulting Islam and its Prophet in addition to exercising missionary among her students.
The Christian Post, 4 June Read more

Egyptian Christian lawyer convicted of blasphemy
An Egyptian court has convicted a Coptic Christian lawyer in the southern province of Assiut on charges of blasphemy and sentenced him to one year in prison with hard labor.
Associated Press, 1 June Read more

Roman Murad Saad, Egyptian Christian Lawyer, Convicted Of Blasphemy
Saad was sentenced in absentia. If he’s arrested or surrenders to authorities, he will be given a retrial and will have to pay 10,000 Egyptians pounds (around $1,400) in fines.
Court officials say Saad was found guilty of ridiculing Islam’s holy book, the Quran, at a lawyers’ union library. No further details were immediately available in the case.
The Huffngton Post, 1 June Read more

May 2013

Muslims Forcing Co-Workers to Obey Religious Practices, French Report Claims
Forty-three percent of staff managers reported faith-related problems at work, Reuters reported on the study by university researchers in Rennes and the international recruitment agency Randstad, and 41 percent expected the problem to continue in the future.
The Christian Post, 28 May Read more

French firms see rising religious demands at work, study says
Listing faith-related problems, the new study said some men refused to take orders from a woman boss or shake hands with women and some refused to handle alcohol or pork products.
Other problems include employees wanting to pray or wear religious garb at work. Some employees try to impose their religious standards on colleagues, such as preventing non-observant Muslims from eating at work during Ramadan.
Reuters, 28 May Read more

Cartoon satirising Islam pulled from student newspaper website
The Woroni student newspaper originally published the cartoon on April 18 as part of its “Advice from Religion” infographic, the fifth in a series previously featuring Catholicism, Scientology, Mormonism and Judaism.
The Canberra Times, 27 May Read more

The Problem of Muslim Leadership
This week, Prime Minister David Cameron and London Mayor Boris Johnson have repeated the reassuring statements of the Muslim leaders to the effect that Lee Rigby’s murder has nothing to do with Islam.
But many ordinary people hear such statements and scratch their heads in bewilderment. A murderer kills a young father while yelling “Allahu akbar” and it’s got nothing to do with Islam?
The Wall Street Journal, 28 May Read more

Islamists attack Turkey “kissing protest”
One person was stabbed when about 20 Islamists chanting “Allah Akhbar” (God is Greatest) and some carrying knives attacked the demonstrators on Saturday, the Milliyet and Hurriyet newspapers reported.
AFP News Limited, 27 May Read more

Dutch anxiety over ‘Sharia triangle’ police no-go area in The Hague
There have been calls for an urgent debate in the Dutch parliament about the integration of Muslim immigrants amid claims that one area of The Hague, known locally as “the Sharia triangle”, is being run by a form of unofficial Sharia police.
THE IRISH TIMES, 24 May Read more

Outrage After Sharia Court Allows Rapist to Marry His 13-year-old Victim
…. “Simply marrying the victim will be seen as seeking the back-door attempt to escape punishment,” Ng continued. “We can never allow a rapist to go scot-free after raping a victim by marrying her.”
The Diplomat, 23 May Read more

Blasphemy: ‘Prisoners say I deserve to die’
“Other women prisoners say that I deserve to die because I’m a blasphemer,” a woman, accused of defiling two copies of the Holy Quran, told the Additional District and Sessions court.
The Express Tribune, 23 May Read more

Ruling party member calls for the ‘annihilation of atheists’ on Twitter, sparking controversy
An official from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) sparked controversy after he called for the “annihilation of atheists” on his Twitter account. …. He also argued that “insulting Islam could not be considered freedom of expression.”
Hürriyet Daily News, 22 May Read more

Turkish-Armenian scribe sentenced to 13 months for blasphemy in blog post
The prosecutor had been seeking one and a half years of jail time for Nisanyan on charges of “insulting the religious beliefs held by a section of the society.” The sentence cannot be converted to a financial penalty, but Nisanyan has the right to appeal.
Hürriyet Daily News, 22 May Read more

Iranian Courts Permit Girls Nine Years Old to Marry
…. the percentages of child marriages in Iran more than doubled from 2006 to 2010. The rate of child marriages grew from 2.3% to 4.9%. The article headline revealed that the child brides are definitely not rare: 850,000 young Iranian girls, as young as 9, married.
Christian Post, 22 May Read more

‘Multiculturalism failing’: Swedish PM pleas for order as riots engulf Stockholm suburbs
While not elaborating on the incident that caused the current riots, Abramsson said all such incidents have a common “problem beneath” – that is, the immigrants not identifying themselves with the country’s society, nor accepting the country’s authorities, sticking only to their own ethnic group.
RT, 21 May Read more

Man refuses to stand for magistrate
Mohammad Issai Issaka refused to stand up in court claiming it was against his religion.
Mr Issaka appeared in court faced with charges of riot, assaulting police and resisting arrest over last year’s riots.
Yahoo! New Zealand, 20 May Read more

Two maids get 10 years, 1,000 lashes for sorcery
A Saudi court sentenced two Asian housemaids to 10 years in jail and ordered their lashed 1,000 times each after they were found guilty of indulging in sorcery at their employers’ houses in the Gulf Kingdom.
Emirates247.com, 20 May Read more

Does Islamic law, Sharia, have a place in American courts?
A lot of state legislatures don’t think so and there is a movement to ban its application in domestic courts, state and federal.
UPI, 19 May Read more

Bangladesh Bloggers Face Constant Death Threats Since Government Labeled Them ‘Atheist’
“They have pushed my life to a state in which I cannot walk free. I remain in self-confinement day after day, and my social relations are mostly snapped,” said Parvez, 36, in an interview with The Huffington Post.
The Huffington Post, 18 May Read more

Blasphemy Charges Becoming New Weapon Against Egyptian Christians
According to a new study, blasphemy and evangelizing accusations are disproportionately used against members of Egypt’s Christian minority—especially those working in education.
Christianity Today, 16 May Read more

Saudi Jails Man For Helping Woman To Convert – 300 Lashes
A Saudi court jailed a Lebanese man for six years and sentenced him to 300 lashes after convicting him of encouraging a Saudi woman to convert to Christianity, local dailies reported.
AFP, 12 May Read more

Egypt: Release teacher accused of blasphemy
The case against her is based on a complaint lodged by the parents of three of her students alleging that she insulted Islam and the Prophet Muhammad during a class.
Amnesty International, 10 May Read more

Muslim teens not exempt from swim lessons
The family argued that their strict religion prevented the girl from taking part in swimming lessons, where she would be seen by her male teacher and possibly other men. The girl already knew how to swim, having attended a private class strictly for Muslim girls, they added.
swissinfo.ch, 10 May Read more

Nepali teacher detained in Qatar on blasphemy charge
A Nepali teacher at a school in Qatar has been fired and subsequently put in prison for allegedly making derogatory remarks on Islam.
Nepal Republic, 9 May Read more

Coptic schoolteacher detained for ‘insulting’ Islam in Egypt’s Luxor
Public prosecutors in the Upper Egyptian Luxor governorate on Thursday ordered the detention of a Coptic-Christian schoolteacher for four days pending investigation on charges that she had insulted the Islamic faith.
Aswat Masriya, 9 May Read more

The mass exodus of Christians from the Muslim world
The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom recently said: “The flight of Christians out of the region is unprecedented and it’s increasing year by year.” In our lifetime alone “Christians might disappear altogether from Iraq, Afghanistan, and Egypt.”
Fox News Network, 7 May Read more

France struggles to fight radical Islam in its jails
In France, the path to radical Islam often begins with a minor offence that throws a young man into an overcrowded, violent jail and produces a hardened convert ready for jihad.
Reuters, 7 May Read more

Of the 15 worst violators of religious freedom in the world, 10 are Islamic states
The Commission is an independent advisory body that monitors abuses of religious freedom by identifying nations such as Egypt — whose transitional government has failed to protect religious minorities, usually Coptic Christians, from Islamic-inspired violence — as “governments that are the most egregious violators.”
Worthy News, 6 May Read more

Questions of equality at the fore in German Islam Conference
…. two years ago, two large Islamic organizations disappeared from the negotiating table: the Central Council of Muslims bowed out, saying recognition of Muslims as a religious community was not making headway.
Deutsche Welle, 6 May Read more

62% of Turkish Men Support Wife Beating
28 per cent of those polled thought violence against spouses to be indispensable: it was needed to discipline them. 34 per cent were more moderate and thought violence against spouses was only “necessary” “occasionally”.

Muslims back Islamic law, disagree on meaning
Devotion to Islam shapes the lives of most Muslims but their views on democracy, religious law known as sharia, and family life are varied, a new study finds.
USA TODAY, 1 May Read more

April 2013

Stoning Returns as Punishment
The controversial “Islamic Punishment” law that was rejected by the Guardians Council returned and eventually was passed last week. To the disappointment of human rights activists and the promises of some Majlis representatives, not only stoning is not negated in the law, it is in fact emphasized.
Rooz online, 30 April Read more

Germans see Islam as a threat
A major study of attitudes towards religion says Germans approve of openness towards other religions. But many are still suspicious of Islam. …. The findings have been published, and among them is the fact that half of all Germans believe that Islam does not fit into the Western world.
Deutsche Welle, 29 April Read more

Libyan Religious Leader Calls For Gender Segregation
The nation’s human rights groups are warning the mufti’s call, if heeded, will likely encourage Islamic vigilantes who have been pressing for gender segregation and who patrol the streets looking for women they say are immodestly clothed or unaccompanied by a male relative.
In an open letter last week addressed to the country’s leaders, Sheikh Sadiq Al-Ghariani warned that unless gender segregation was imposed, Libya risked incurring the wrath of Allah.
VOAnews.com, 29 April Read more

52% Of Canadians Distrust Muslims, According To Latest Poll
The nationwide survey indicates that as many as 52 percent of Canadians feel Muslims can be trusted “a little” or “not trusted at all.” …. What’s more, 42 percent of Canadians said discrimination against Muslims is “mainly their fault.”
The Huffington Post, 26 April Read more

Tunisia: upholding of blogger’s seven-year jail sentence for ‘insulting Islam’ condemned
The upholding of a seven-and-half-year sentence against a Tunisian blogger jailed for “insulting Islam” is yet another blow to freedom of expression in the country, Amnesty International said this afternoon.
Amnesty International, 26 April Read more

Violence in Islam: The heart of the matter
…. Of course, not all Muslims are terrorists. But the willing chorus of Muslim apologists should devote their time, energy and resources to fight …. for instance, the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia who insists that girls are fit for marriage by the age of 10-12, or the Saudi court which declines to nullify a marriage between a six-year-old girl and a 58-year-old man.
They should intellectually fight the same Mufti for saying that all churches in the Arabian Peninsula must be destroyed. The courts which sentenced the Turkish pianist who tweeted and retweeted atheist contents. The Muslims who burn and destroy anything that comes handy because they feel offended by someone or something they think had offended their faith.
Hurriyet Daily News, 26 April Read more

Saudi Arabia Reaffirms Ban on the Building of Non-Muslim Places of Worship
Bishops from several European countries are criticizing Saudi Minister of Justice, Mohamed el-Eissi, after he insisted that “the cradle of the Muslim sanctities will not allow the establishment of any other places of worship.”
MidEast Christian News, 25 April Read more

Eighty Lashes for Drinking? Egyptian Court Ruling Puts Sharia in the Spotlight
On April 19, 30-year-old Mohamed Ragab spent the day at a friend’s wedding and then took a bus home. When he disembarked in his small village of Matay, in Upper Egypt’s conservative countryside, he was stopped by officers from the local police.
The Daily Beast, 25 April Read more

Toronto court rules woman must remove niqab to testify
Justice Norris Weisman announced his decision after applying a new test set out by the Supreme Court of Canada dealing with witnesses wearing a veil.
“I conclude that to permit N.S. to testify at the preliminary inquiry with her face obscured by the niqab will impair defence counsels’ ability to assess her demeanour, as well as the [judge’s] ability to assess her credibility,” Weisman said.
CBC, 24 April Read more

Greece pulls nude Olympic statutes after Qatar wanted to cover ‘members’ with black cloth
“The statues have already returned to Greece,” a culture ministry source told AFP, adding: “Organisers in Qatar wanted to cover up the statues’ members with black cloth. So they were never put on display, they went back into storage and returned on April 19.”
Agence France-Presse, 23 April Read more

Nour Responds to Panorama’s Secret of Britain’s Shariah Councils
What’s even more saddening is that unfortunately, many of our Imams do not comprehend many of the issues faced by the multicultural Muslim community in the UK. …. many do not fully understand and appreciate matters of domestic abuse and the severity which comes with it.
Muslimmatters.org, 22 April Read more

Shariah Councils in Britain are ‘archaic’, ‘incompetent’
“The Shariah law was put together in the ninth and tenth centuries. People want to apply it in twenty-first-century Britain without realizing that they are living in different times.” He said council adjudicators were “full of enthusiasm but lacking competence. They can do nothing right. They simply do not understand the issues.”
Center for Islamic Pluralism, 22 April Read more

Beware of LGBT and freedom of religion movements, Muhyiddin tells Muslims
…. “There are parties who are becoming more strident in demanding freedom of religion without limits, including the right for Muslims to become apostates,” he said.

Islam Is More Dangerous Than Other Religions, Radicals Aren’t Just Fringe Element
“All religious are not alike. As many people have pointed out — ‘The Book of Mormon,’ did you see the show? … OK, can you imagine if they did ‘The Book of Islam’? Could they do that? There’s only one religion that threatens violence and carries it out for things like that. Could they do “The Book of Islam” on Broadway?”
OpposingViews.com, 21 April Read more

Morocco’s High Council of Ulemas’s Death Sentence Fatwa on Apostates Sparks Controversy
The High Council of Ulemas backed up their opinion with the Koranic verse “And whoever of you reverts from his religion [to disbelief] and dies while he is a disbeliever – for those, their deeds have become worthless in this world and the Hereafter, and those are the companions of the Fire, they will abide therein eternally, “Surat Al-Baqarah [verse 217]. And the prophet’s Hadith “…The Prophet said, ‘If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.‘
Morocco News Tribune, 19 April Read more

Tunisian Salafists storm female student hostel to stop dancing
Hardline Islamists threw stones and bottles at young women in a student hostel in Tunis to stop them staging a performance of dance and music, witnesses said on Thursday, in another blow to secular freedoms in the country that spawned the Arab Spring.
Reuters, 18 April Read more

Veil fury as students forced to show faces
Young women arriving to take their final exams at a women’s college in Islamabad last week were shocked when they were confronted by male proctors demanding they remove their face veils for identification before being allowed to enter the examination room.
The Age, 15 April Read more

Qantas derided as the ‘flying Mosque-a-roo’ over pork ban
Qantas is weathering an attack on social media over its decision to ditch food containing alcohol or pork on its European flights through Dubai.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 11 April Read more

After cathedral clash, Copts doubt their future in Egypt
When Egyptian Christian Kerollos Maher watched on television as petrol bombs and rocks rained on Cairo’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral he had only one thought – emigration.
Reuters, 11 April Read more

Cleric defends medieval punishments and decrees opposing Khamenei is ‘evil’
…. a member of powerful Assembly of Experts …. defended medieval punishment including being hurled off a cliff, stoning, public hanging, mutilation, taking out eyes, juvenile execution and torture.
National Council of Resistance of Iran, 9 April Read more

Bangladesh protesters demand blasphemy law
Hundreds of thousands of people have held protests in Bangladesh to demand that the government introduce an anti-blasphemy law that would include the death penalty for bloggers who insult Islam.
Al Jazeera, 7 April Read more

Toronto dad upset he’s not allowed to watch daughter’s swim class
“I spoke to a staff member and she told me that it’s because of Muslim women, that we’re not allowed to look at them or whatever,” Chris, 38, told the Toronto Sun Friday. “I don’t think religion has a role to play in a public pool.”
TORONTO SUN, 6 April Read more

Pigs can’t fly – Qantas bans pork on in-flight menu to respect Islam
No food containing pork or pork products will be served on those flights – which now has a stopover in Dubai – because it is strictly forbidden in Islam and is considered “unholy”.
The Daily Telegraph, 5 April Read more

Surgical Paralysis Ordered in Saudi Arabia as Punishment for Teenage Assault
Ali Al-Khawahir, 24, is awaiting court-ordered surgical paralysis in Saudi Arabia for an assault he committed when he was 14 years old.
The convicted man’s mother told [said] that the family is seeking help raising $270,000 in “blood money,” which in Saudi Arabia can be requested by a crime’s victim …. in exchange for punishment. “We don’t have even a tenth of this sum,” she said.
U.S. News & World Report, 4 April Read more

Pakistan Anti-Christian Violence Injures 18
The violence in the city’s Francis Colony area followed Muslim anger about Easter Sunday prayers in local churches and a dispute among Muslim and Christian youngsters over loud music.
BosNewsLife, 3 April Read more

24-year-old man sentenced to be paralyzed
Al-Khawahir has been in jail for the past decade. He was told that he needed to pay the victim $266,000.00 and if he doesn’t come up with the money, he will suffer the same fate that his friend did.
The man sentenced to be paralyzed wouldn’t be the first criminal to experience such an intense punishment either.
Examiner.com, 3 April Read more

March 2013

Saudi Arabia ‘may end’ Twitter user anonymity
…. local media reported the government had asked telecom companies to look at ways they could monitor, or block, free internet phone services such as Skype.
Twitter is highly popular with Saudis and has stirred broad debate on subjects ranging from religion to politics in a country where such public discussion had been considered at best unseemly and sometimes illegal.
Al Jazeera, 31 March Read more

Amputation for theft added to draft penal code
The draft penal code bill has been amended to include punishments as prescribed in the Quran, such as amputation for theft.
Minivan News, 30 March Read more

Muslim headwear stirs complaint at Northwest Indiana charter school
The parents of a Muslim student say their daughter was discriminated against when a teacher sent her to the office for wearing traditional Muslim headwear called a hijab, but officials at her school say the teacher was only following school policy regarding hats and head coverings.
Sun-Times Media, 29 March Read more

Poll shows French back veil ban in private sector
The survey found that 86 percent of French people back introducing legislation that would ban “all signs of religious or political affiliation” in private schools and nurseries. According to the same poll, 83 percent support imposing a law making it illegal in all privately-owned businesses.
FRANCE 24, 26 March Read more

Two-thirds of humanity suffers from ‘Islamophobia disease’: Turkey’s religious head
“Islamophobia has become an illness in the hearts of two-thirds of humanity. We are facing different kinds of challenges against Islam,” Görmez said in a meeting with religious officials in the western province of Izmir.
Hurriyet Daily News, 25 March Read more

Saudi Arabia ‘threatens to ban’ Skype, WhatsApp, other instant messaging apps
The Saudi Arabian government has threatened to ban the use of instant messaging applications because of failure to control them, Saudi media reveal. It comes a month after the minister for media and culture confirmed censorship of Twitter.
TV-Novosti, 24 March Read more

Pakistan ‘Blasphemy’ Girl Facing Prison; Mother Death Sentence
Pakistani authorities have reopened the trial against a mentally challenged Christian girl on charges of “blasphemy” while a Christian mother faces a possible death sentence for allegedly making “derogatory remarks” about Islam’s prophet Mohammed, lawyers told BosNewsLife.
BosNewsLife, 23 March Read more

Topless Tunisian protestor deserves a stoning, says Islamist chief
Mr. Adel Alami, head of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice in Tunisia, called this week for the unnamed girl to be whip-lashed one hundred times in punishment. Then, fearing that he might be going easy on the nude feminist, Alami changed his mind and decided on stoning instead.
Al Bawaba, 21 March Read more

Egypt’s Islamists warn giving women some rights could destroy society
…. The Muslim Brotherhood warned the declaration would give girls sexual freedom, legalize abortion, provide teenagers with contraceptives, give equality to women in marriage and require men and women to share duties such as child care and chores.
Reuters, 14 March Read more

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood Condemns UN Report on Women
Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, the country’s largest Islamist movement, criticized a United Nations report that aimed to end violence against women and girls, saying it violates principles of Islamic law.
BLOOMBERG, 14 March Read more

Alleged blasphemy: Mob burns scores of Christian homes in Lahore
A highly-charged mob of thousands burnt more than 40 Christian houses in Badami Bagh area of Lahore on Saturday to “take revenge of the blasphemy” allegedly committed by a Christian two days earlier.
The Express Tribune News Network, 9 March Read more

Belgian Man Sentenced to 4 Months in Jail for Tearing Koran
…. But racism or the specter of hate crimes is being used to ram through Islamic blasphemy law by another means. Blasphemy law is still unacceptable in the West, so those being charged with it have to be charged with other offenses.
FRONTPAGEMAG.COM, 7 March Read more

Burkinis to help Muslim Swedes take the plunge
The municipal leisure committee had received a citizens petition asking if the swimming pool could have a separate time slot for women, in order to facilitate for residents who chose for religious reasons to not show their bodies to members of the opposite sex. The local politicians, however, decided to decline the petition.
Instead, they want to buy in burkinis – swimsuits that cover all parts of a woman’s body – which their observant Muslim swimmers could buy before taking the plunge.
The Local Europe, 6 March Read more

Egyptian Muslim Scholar Says Christian Copts Will Pay Jizya
According to the Al Azhar professor, “If non-Muslims were to learn the meaning of ‘jizya,’ they would ask for it to be applied–and we will apply it, just like Islam commands us to.” His logic is that, if Christians pay the jizya, they would buy for themselves “protection,” hence why they themselves should want to pay it.
Assyrian International News Agency, 6 March Read more

No room for Sharia law in multicultural society
ISLAMIC law and polygamous marriages will be denounced as forever unacceptable in Australia in a bipartisan parliamentary report that will define what multiculturalism means for our nation, and state there must be only “one law for all”.
…. The committee heard that Australians were comfortable with multiculturalism and racial diversity, but an overwhelming number of people expressed concerns Muslims were not integrating and were coming to Australia to impose their values.
The Australian, 3 March Read more

February 2013

#Staff to target Islamic College of South Australia on scarfs
THOUSANDS of school workers are being urged to protest directly to an Islamic school that threatened to sack non-Muslim female staff if they did not wear a headscarf.
The Advertiser, 28 February Read more

Sudan man’s foot, hand ‘amputated’ by court order
The amputation of Adam Al Muthna’s right hand and left foot took place by court order at the interior ministry’s Al Rebat hospital in Khartoum on February 14, the rights groups said, citing “reliable sources.”
AFP, 28 February Read more

Christians grow anxious in “100 percent” Islamic Sudan
The structure was one of several small churches that the government has knocked down over the past few months, shocking Christians who worry they will not be able to practice their faith in majority-Muslim Sudan now that the country’s south – where most follow Christianity or traditional animist beliefs – has seceded.
Reuters, 27 February Read more

Nearly half Saudi women are beaten at home
Nearly half Saudi women are beaten up by their husbands or other family members at home and many of them are hit by sticks and head cover, according to a university study published in local newspapers on Tuesday.
Emirates247.com, 26 February Read more

‘Prostitutes’: Saudi cleric insults recently-appointed female Shura members
A controversial Saudi cleric used Twitter to publicly insult the recently-appointed female members of the Shura Council. Derogatory terms such as “prostitutes” and “the filth of society” were used to describe the highly-achieved female academics and technocrats.
AL ARABIYA NEWS, 24 February Read more

Imprisoned American says Iranian captors ‘waiting for me to deny Christ’
American pastor Saeed Abedini, jailed in a notoriously brutal Iranian prison for his Christian faith, is facing physical and psychological torture at the hands of captors demanding he renounce his beliefs, according to supporters.
Fox News Network, 22 February Read more

Orthodox patriarch opposes plan to make Hagia Sophia a mosque
…. Once the patriarchal basilica of Constantinople, the Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque when Muslims conquered the city. In 1935, Turkey’s government made the building a museum, as part of the secularizing campaign under the leadership of Kemal Ataturk.
CatholicCulture.org, 20 February Read more

Wilders in Australia: Islam is an ideology because it aims for an Islamic state and wants to impose Islamic Sharia law on all of us
I am also here to warn Australia about the true nature of Islam. It is not just a religion as many people mistakenly think; it is primarily a dangerous totalitarian ideology.
I am here to warn you that what is happening in my native country might soon happen in Australia too, if you fail to be vigilant.
The Iconoclast, 19 February Read more

When An Arab Denounces The Arabs For Their Backwardness, Etc. What Is It He Can’t Say?
Every so often …. you can see a video of an Arab journalist, or professor, or political figure, who denounces the sorry condition of his fellow Arabs, deplores their miserable state, their plight, their wretchedness, their backwardness, their conspiracy-mentality, their everything. …. Look behind their denunciation of “the Arabs” to what they are really semaphoring: a denunciation of Islam.
The Iconoclast, 19 February Read more

Lebanese women take on Muslim judges who call rape a ‘marital right’
Lebanese women are taking to the streets to demand that the government takes domestic violence seriously, by introducing laws to protect women from abusive partners.
CNN, 18 February Read more

OIC gears up to get denigration of religions criminalized
Getting the go-ahead from the Cairo Islamic Summit, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has been actively trying to get the denigration of religions recognized as a criminal offense, according to a top official.
Saudi Gazette, 18 February Read more

Libya arrests suspected Christian missionaries
Four foreigners were arrested in Libya on suspicion of distributing books about Christianity and proselytizing, a Libyan police spokesman said on Saturday.
Associated Press, 16 February Read more

Three churches attacked with petrol bombs in Indonesia
ATTACKERS threw petrol bombs at three churches in central Indonesia, in the latest assault on religious minorities in the world’s biggest Muslim-populated nation.
AFP, 15 February Read more

Islamists denounce Valentine’s Day as an excuse for forbidden sex, ban gift-buying in Indonesia
Many teenagers use the Western holiday as a time to express their love, which often leads to premarital sex, said Idris Abdul Somad, deputy mayor of Depok, a town on the outskirts of Jakarta, the capital.
Associated Press, 14 February Read more

Non-Muslim staff told to wear headscarves in Adelaide
An Islamic College in Adelaide has threatened to dismiss its non-Muslim female staff if they don’t wear headscarves, as critics say it’s wrong to compel women to identify with a religion they don’t practice.
SBS, 13 February Read more

Cleric affirms death penalty for leaving Islam on Al-Jazeera
…. failed to respond to a recent Al-Jazeera TV broadcast, in which a top imam affirmed the death penalty for anyone who quits Islam.
THE DAILY CALLER, 12 February Read more

Islamist Censorship Charges On – Now sharia advocates are trying to stop the use of the word “Islamist”
In just the latest episode of censorship in the prophet’s name, Muslim activist groups now want reporters to stop using the word “Islamist.” “Islamist” is an important and useful word — it identifies the politically motivated Muslims who are intent on injecting sharia into Western law and culture, and distinguishes them from other followers of Islam.
National Review Online, 11 February Read more

Egypt court suspends YouTube over anti-Islam film
The country’s administrative court ordered the ministries of communication and investment to block YouTube, owned by Google, inside Egypt because it had carried the film “Innocence of Muslims,” said state news agency MENA.
Reuters, 9 February Read more

Is violence a sign of Islam’s strength or its weakness?
…. Some take pride in the apostasy law as evidence of Islam’s supremacy. Dr Wan Azhar Wan Ahmad, senior fellow at the Institute of Islamic Understanding in Kuala Lumpur, commented that the apostasy law reinforces Islam’s truthfulness and perfection, and respect for ‘freedom of worship’ demands that non-Muslims must grant Islam the right to use violence against apostates:
markdurie.com, 7 February Read more

A day after fatwa, Kashmir’s all-girl band calls it quits
Kashmir lost its only all-girls rock band on Monday as its three teenage members decided to call it quits, a day after the Grand Mufti issued a fatwa terming singing as un-Islamic and asked them to abandon it.
THE TIMES OF INDIA, 4 February Read more

Two Children to be Tried for Insulting Islam in Egypt as Anti-Christian Hostility Escalates
…. anti-Christian hostilities in the restive country are getting worse as the two boys are to be tried in a court in Beni Suef – the same city where a mother and her seven children were convicted last month for reconverting to Christianity – for showing “contempt to Islamic religion and insulting the Koran.”
The Christian Post, 3 February Read more

A Pakistani Nuclear Physicist: “Deep Down, Muslims Feel That They Have Failed”
…. When I started teaching here at Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad in the early ‘70s, there was only a single student in the entire campus wearing a burka. Today around 70 per cent of the women here are fully covered. Only 30 per cent go around normally.
No Compulsion, 2 February Read more

A Pakistani nuclear physicist gives a lucid account of the state of Islam in the 21st century
…. A real liberation will only happen when the political changes are followed by cultural ones, and also by a change of attitude. Arab Muslims must get rid of the false but widespread belief that science contains any kind of religious elements.
This Insh’allah mentality, according to which Allah is responsible for everything, is the opposite of the scientific way of thinking.
The Muslim Times, 2 February Read more

January 2013

Qaradawi: “If They [Muslims] Had Gotten Rid of the Apostasy Punishment Islam Wouldn’t Exist Today”
Yusuf al-Qaradawi, Spiritual Guide to the Muslim Brotherhood and popular Al-Jazeera television personality, whose oeuvre of Sharia supremacism and traditional Islamic Jew-hatred inspired the Orwellian-named Al-Qaradawi Centre for Islamic Moderation and Renewal in Qatar, and The Arab Spring itself, has once again aired his Sharia-compliant views on apostasy.
Andrew Bostom, 30 January Read more

Saudi shops to build sex-segregation walls
SAUDI authorities have ordered shops employing both men and women to build separation walls to enforce the strict segregation laws of the ultra-conservative kingdom, local press report.
It stipulated that a separation barrier, not shorter than 1.6 metres, should be erected to divide working men and women.
NEWS.com.au, 29 January Read more

‘Admitting you are a secularist can get you killed in Pakistan’
Urdu linguists have distorted the meaning of the word “secular,” and falsely translated it as la-deen (non-religious). The use of the word is so dangerous now that even mainstream leftist political parties in the country are afraid of talking about it.
The Express Tribune News Network, 28 January Read more

Iran sentences American pastor to 8 years in prison
…. The 34-year-old father of two denied evangelizing in Iran and claims he had only returned to his native land to help establish an orphanage. Authorities pulled him off a bus last August and threw him into the notorious Evin Prison in Tehran.
FoxNews.com, 27 January Read more

Islam: 74% of French say it’s an ‘intolerant’ religion
The survey, published on the Le Monde newspaper website, also showed eight out of 10 French people believe the Islamic religion tries to impose its views on others, 10% believe a majority of Muslims are fundamentalists, and another 44% believe a many but not all Muslims are fundamentalists.
ANSAmed, 24 January Read more

Man gets 5 years for insulting Islam on Facebook
The Bandung High Court has added one more year to the prison term of Sebastian Joe, who was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment for the blasphemy of Islam by the Ciamis District Court in West Java.
The Jakarta Post, 23 January Read more

Police stop Saudi woman driving family car – Man asked wife to drive after feeling ill
…. the police learnt that the woman’s husband was sitting with her and that she took the wheel after he complained of uneasiness and the situation required her to drive the car. The husband, an engineer in a local company, was taken to a clinic for treatment. He however pledged not to allow his wife to drive again, in line with local traditions.
Gulf News, 22 January Read more

Why Germans distrust Islam
Fewer than one-fifth of Germans believe Islam is compatible with German culture.
The cashier at the supermarket wears a headscarf, copies of the Koran are handed out on the streets, and mosques have become part of some cities’ landscapes. Islam appears to be encroaching on life in Germany and that bothers a lot of people.
“For decades, woman fought for equal rights, and we have attained something. And now, women are choosing to wear headscarves. I don’t want that and it scares me,” a unversity-educated woman from Cologne says.
Deutsche Welle, 21 January Read more

Iran Resorts to Hangings in Public to Cut Crime
Black-clad executioners were inspecting the remote controls they would use to hang the men, both in their early 20s, who were convicted of stabbing a man in November and stealing his bag and the equivalent of $20.
The New York Times, 20 January Read more

Raised on Hatred
Mainstream educational television programs are consistently anti-Semitic. In songs, books, newspaper articles and blogs, Jews are variously compared to pigs, donkeys, rats and cockroaches, and also to vampires and a host of other imaginary creatures.
The New York Times, 17 January Read more

Where are the Healthy Gender Relations in the Muslim Community?
If Islam’s essence is justice, then aren’t we violating the essence of Islam when we accept Muslim men marrying non-Muslims while we violently reject Muslim women doing the same?
altmuslim, 17 January Read more

Election is banned in Islam: Saudi scholar
A well-known Saudi Islamic scholar has issued a new fatwa (edict) saying holding elections for a president or another form of leadership is prohibited in Islam.
emirates247.com, 17 January Read more

Saudi clerics protest against appointing women to advisory body
Dozens of Saudi clerics staged a rare protest in front of the Royal Court on Tuesday against King Abdullah’s decision to appoint women to a body that advises the government on new laws, a sign of growing conservative unease at modest social reforms.
Reuters, 15 January Read more

Hate Crime Stats Deflate ‘Islamophobia’ Myth
A detailed analysis of FBI statistics …. since the 9/11 terrorist attacks reveals that, on a per capita basis, American Muslims, contrary to spin, have been subjected to hate crimes less often than other prominent minorities. …. Americans should keep these numbers in mind whenever Islamists attempt to silence critics by invoking Muslim victimhood.
Right Side News, 14 January Read more

Turkey’s science state council halts publication of evolution books
The Scientific and Technical Research Council of Turkey has put a stop to the publication and sale of all books in its archives that support the theory of evolution.
Hürriyet Daily News, 14 January Read more

“Democracy is Forbidden in Islam”
Thanks to the “Arab Spring,” which has seen the rise of Islamists to power in a number of countries, Muslim extremists today feel free to express their opinion on political and religious issues.
One of them …. ruled this week that democracy in its concept as “ruling of the people by the people” and “should be forbidden in Islam.”
Gatestone Institute, 11 January Read more

Plan for Muslim housing enclave in Sydney suburbs
AN interest-free housing project aimed at the Muslim community and boasting 100 per cent halal housing has sparked a major row, with critics labelling it a discriminatory plan that could lead to a Muslim enclave.
The Daily Telegraph, 9 January Read more

How Muslims Created Islamophobia
What do I mean by “self-created fear of Islamophobia”? Do I dare to say that Islamophobia actually doesn’t exist at all? Yep, it didn’t exist but some of our Islamic centres created the term and spread it around through their actions.
The Huffington Post, 8 January Read more

Aceh bans women from straddling motorcycles
“The government is only preserving morals. Women must not straddle motorbikes because it provokes the male drivers,” declared Yahya, who has been in office for eight months. “We are implementing Islamic law here,” he said.
However, he also added that women were allowed to straddle motorbikes if they were driving, as long as they were dressed in a “Muslim way”.
Deutsche Welle, 8 January Read more

Democracy, Elections are Forbidden in Islam: Salafist Leader
The Jordanian leader of the hardliner Salafi Jihadi current said that democracy in its concept as “ruling of the people by the people” is in contradiction with Islam’s concept of the sovereignty of God’s law.
Ammonnews.net, 6 January Read more

French magazine sparks another controversy over Mohammed cartoons
A French satire magazine has published a special issue containing cartoons on the life of Islam’s Prophet Mohammed. Similar images, which are deemed blasphemous by Muslims, have sparked international protest in the past.
RT, 2 January Read more

Belgian Hema store wrong to sack headscarf-wearing worker
The tribunal ordered Hema to pay the 21-year-old woman six month’s salary – €9,000 – in compensation. The company has since drawn up formal clothing requirements for its Belgian stores.
DutchNews.nl, 2 January Read more

Is Islam compatible with democracy?
…. It appears civil law is not sufficient for this Islamist who prefers Islamic punishment, thus reflecting a mentality whose logical conclusion is cutting hands for stealing and stoning for adultery.
But the indications are not encouraging for the Arab world, and worrying as far as Turkey is concerned.
[A READER’S COMMENT] There is no literal concept of democracy or tolerance in any Abrahamic religion. These modern values came thousands of years later. In that sense Islam is no different from Christianity or Judaism.
What is different is that Islam has actually regressed, not progressed, in the era of globalization. After the fall of the Ottoman caliphate, Wahabis with their oil money filled the gap of Islamic jurisprudence. The world has greatly suffered ever since.
Hürriyet Daily News, 1 January Read more

Missing Pieces – 5.0 The Media

This lists the media covered and shows the number of news reports and articles from each individual publication/source

5.1 UK-Based Media

UK-Based Media
Media News Items
News Items
Left Leaning National Media:
The Guardian (47)
The Independent (37)
The Huffington Post UK (31)
BBC (29)
144 40
Right Leaning National Media:
Daily Mail (43)
The Telegraph (30)
73 20
Other National Media 31 9
Regional Media 32 9
Other & Web Publications 63 18
Organisations 13 4
Totals 356 100

Other National Media
Daily Express (3), Daily Star, Financial Times (2), The Daily Mirror (3), The New Statesman (2), The Spectator (6), The Sun (2), The Sunday Times (2), The Times, Sunday Express, Standpoint, Press Association, Channel 4, ITV (2), Sky News (3)

Regional Media
Bedfordshire News, Belfast Telegraph, Birmingham Mail (3), Bradford Telegraph and Argus, Cambridge News, Daily Post, Derby Telegraph (2), East Grinstead Courier and Observer, East London Advertiser, East London and West Essex, Guardian Series, Evening Standard (3), Express & Star, Herald express, HeraldScotland (2), Keighley News, Lancashire Evening Post, Lancashire Telegraph (2), Telegraph and Argus, The Bolton News, The Scotsman (2), Yorkshire Post (3).

Other & Web Publications
al-bab.com (5), Archbishop Cranmer (5), Asian Image, Christian Today (3), ConservativeHome (2), Harry’s Place (16), Homo economicus (3), Howie’s Corner, Index on Censorship, Lapido Media, Liberal Conspiracy (2), Mick Hartley, openDemocracy (3), Religious Watch, Student Rights, The Commentator (12), The Freethinker (3), VICE UK, womensgrid – women’s news

Amnesty International UK, Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain (2), Lawyers’ Secular Society, National Secular Society (7), Richard Dawkins Foundation, University of Cambridge

5.2 English Language Media Based Outside the UK

Media with 3 or More Items Selected
Reuters (20), Agence France-Presse (13), Hurriyet Daily News (Turkey) (9), The Huffington Post (8), Associated Press (8), Al Jazeera (8), The Copenhagen Post (Denmark) (7), The Christian Post (6), Amnesty International (5), Deutsche Welle (Germany) (5), The Daily Beast (5), The Express Tribune (Pakistan) (5), The Iconoclast (5), The Local Europe (5), The Washington Post (5), Trending Central (5), AL ARABIYA NEWS (4), Arab News (4), CNN (4), Clarion Project (4), Fox News (4), Emirates247.com (4), FRANCE 24 (3), BLOOMBERG (3), BosNewsLife (3), CBC News (3), National Post (3), The New York Times (3), RT/TV-Novosti (3), The Washington Times (3), USA TODAY (3), Human Rights Watch (3), THE TIMES OF INDIA (3)