Myanmar soldiers confess to mass murder and rape of Rohingya Muslims

A Bangladeshi girl carries her sister's shoes near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh on 8 December 2017. [REUTERS/Damir Sagolj]
A girl carries her shoes near a camp for Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh on 8 December 2017 

Two Myanmar soldiers have gone on record confirming for the first time the atrocities committed by the army against the country’s Rohingya Muslim minority. The two defectors said on camera that they were ordered to carry out mass killings and rape in 2017 which, according to a human rights group, corresponds to accounts by survivors of the attacks in Rakhine state.

NGO Fortify Rights says that the testimony, which also claims that men, women and children were buried in mass graves, could be used as evidence of crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court (ICC). The rights group said that the two soldiers fled the country last month and are said to be in the custody of the ICC in The Hague.

Myo Win Tun and Zaw Naing Tun reportedly gave “the names and ranks of 19 direct perpetrators from the Myanmar army, including themselves, as well as six senior commanders… they claim ordered or contributed to atrocity crimes against Rohingya.”

READ: Myanmar, China and now India: Is Muslim dignity so cheap? 

According to Myo Win Tun, the commander of the 15th Military Operations Centre gave an order to “shoot all you see and all you hear” when raiding Muslim villages. They apparently killed and buried “eight women, seven children and 15 men and elderly” in one operation.

“We also raped Muslim women prior to shooting them,” he explained. “There were the corporals, sergeants and officers who raped Muslim women. I also raped one time.”

The Myanmar government has consistently denied accusations of genocide against the Muslim minority. Earlier this year it claimed that the allegations are based on a “distorted picture of the situation” after the International Court of Justice ordered Myanmar to prevent the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya.

The UN says that at least 10,000 people have been killed and more than 700,000 have fled Rakhine state since the military’s 2017 crackdown following attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) the previous year. Thousands of Rohingya women and girls, it is said, were raped, and between 2017 and 2019, around 200 Rohingya villages were razed to the ground.

ARSA was formed following the Rakhine State riots in 2012 which involved attacks on Muslim villages leaving tens of thousands displaced. Human Rights Watch described the incidents, which were supported by the Myanmar authorities, as “ethnic cleansing”.

READ: Egypt’s Al-Azhar hails Gambia on its stance over Rohingya Muslims

(Source / 10.09.2020)

Pictures| Israeli police storm Al Aqsa mosque, place loudspeakers on roof

Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- The Directorate of Islamic Waqf said that tension prevailed in the courtyards of Al Aqsa mosque today when the Israeli police stormed the holy mosque and placed loudspeakers and electronic devices.

the directorate added in a statement issued today that the Israeli police, accompanied by Israeli special forces, stormed the Al Aqsa mosque from Al Asbat gate and placed loudspeakers and electronic devices at the northern wall of the mosque.

The statement added that the raid took place after the Islamic Waqf rejected an Israeli order to open the gate of the minaret of Al Asbat gate a few days ago. The Israeli police used ladders to reach the top of the northern wall.

Meanwhile, dozens of Israeli extremists stormed the courtyards of Al Aqsa mosque today under strict protection by the Israeli police and special forces.

(Source / 06.09.2020)

Israeli Police Close Aqsa’ Doors For An Hour, Arrest Two Young Men

Photos File

Photos File

The Israeli occupation police on Wednesday evening closed all the Aqsa Mosque’s doors for about one hour after arresting two Palestinian young men at the holy site on allegations that they were found in possession of a knife.

According to local sources, police officers subdued and hauled two young men to a detention center after chasing them in the Mosque’s main courtyard.

The police claimed that one of the young men was spotted carrying a knife.

They also shut down the Mosque for about one hour and prevented Muslim worshipers from entering or leaving the holy site.

(Source / 30.01.2020) 

Saudi accused of ‘Judaising’ the Quran

A copy of the Qur’an that was translated to Hebrew and approved by Saudi authorities has more than 300 errors

A translation of the Holy Quran into Hebrew, approved by the Saudi authorities, has been found to contain more than 300 errors, a number of which appearing to support Israel’s narrative over its claim to Palestine and Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Amongst the most serious errors, discovered by the Palestinian news agency Shehab, is the omission of the name of the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh), who is mentioned at least four times in the Muslim holy text. Equally serious is the translation of Al-Aqsa Mosque to “The Temple” which is the Jewish name for the Muslim holy site.

The website of the King Fahd Complex for the Printing of the Holy Quran, which produces about ten million copies of the Quran every year in 74 different languages, displayed the error strewn copy on its website.

In response to queries about the mistakes, the King Fahd Complex said that the concerns had been presented to “competent authority in the complex, and is awaiting the appropriate procedure by the complex management after verification and study.”

A copy of the translation was made available to the public in a PDF format until last Saturday evening, before Shehab’s publication of a video alerting to the errors.

In the video, researcher on Israeli affairs, Aladdin Ahmed, is shown raising alarm over the mistranslation, many of which contain doctrinal implications. The name Al-Aqsa Mosque was replaced in the seventh verse of Surah Al-Isra (17th Surah) which tells of the miraculous event in which Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) is transported from Mecca to Jerusalem.

The Hebrew translation contains a parenthesis alongside the translation of Al-Aqsa Mosque to “The Temple” in which it is stated that it is the same place as where the temple of Prophet Suleiman (pbuh) is located.

Muslims are very likely to see this as a dangerous mistranslation, giving the impression that the Islamic holy text itself endorses a fundamentalist Jewish reading of history while at the same time justifying Israel’s attempt to demolish the holy site in order to rebuild the ancient temple.

Many are unlikely to see, what is thought to be a “Judaised” reading of the Quran, as being a mere coincidence. Saudi-Israel relations are at a crossroads at this current moment. Under Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, the kingdom appears to have turned its back on the Palestinians by signalling that he is ready for political normalisation with Tel-Aviv even if it means complete abandonment of the Palestinians.

READ: No peace in Middle East without recognising Palestinian rights, says Qatar Emir

It was the Saudis, in fact, that led the Arab Peace Initiative in 2002 which offered full normalisation with Israel in exchange for a full withdrawal from the occupied territories (including East Jerusalem) and a “just settlement” of the Palestinian refugee problem based on UN Resolution 194.

Israel’s ability to forge new relations with the Saudis despite not conceding to any of the demands in the Arab initiative has been presented by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a victory for him and a demonstration of Israel’s strength in the region.

Israel has been accused of removing the connection of Islam and Christianity to Jerusalem in an attempt to cement its exclusive claim to the occupied territory. In addition to passing laws reducing non-Jews to second class status by declaring Israel to be a Jewish state, lawmakers in Tel-Aviv have also banned the Muslim call to prayer, and regularly blocks and abuses worshippers in the holy sites.

(Source / 28.01.2020) 

130 EXTREMIST SETTLERS CARRY OUT PROVOCATIVE TOURS AT AL AQSA MOSQUE

Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- Groups of extremist Jewish settlers on Sunday broke into Al Aqsa mosque under protection by the Israeli police and special forces.

A source from the Department of Islamic Waqf told QNN reporter that 130 Jewish fanatics broke into Al Aqsa mosque this morning.

The intruders included 32 students from right-wing religious institutes and universities, who broke into the holy mosque escorted by an Israeli soldier.

35 settlers from the Israeli government also broke into the holy mosque.

QNN reporter added that the settlers performed rituals in the eastern area of the holy mosque while large numbers of Israeli special forces protected them.

The Israeli authorities had earlier this month prevented Palestinian worshipers from entering to Al Aqsa mosque for periods ranging from one week to six months, accusing them of performing prayers at the Mercy payer room.

(Source / 19.01.2020) 

Erdogan: Israel tries to dim Islam’s traces in Jerusalem

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan looks at his gift given by Justice and Development (AK) Party's Istanbul Deputy Nureddin Nebati (not seen) during the 2nd Conference of Inter-parliamentary platform on Jerusalem in Istanbul, Turkey on December 14, 2018. ( Murat Kula - Anadolu Agency )

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan looks at his gift given by Justice and Development (AK) Party’s Istanbul Deputy Nureddin Nebati (not seen) during the 2nd Conference of Inter-parliamentary platform on Jerusalem in Istanbul, Turkey on December 14, 2018

Turkish president on Friday accused Israel of trying to deliberately wipe out traces of Islamic heritage in Jerusalem over the last 50 years, Anadolu Agency reports.

“You [Israel] will not be able to wipe out,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at an Inter-parliamentary platform on Jerusalem in Istanbul.

You are deceiving yourself if you think you can destroy Jerusalem’s spiritual identity by moving a few embassies and consulates there, Erdogan said.

Tension has been running high in the occupied Palestinian territories since last year when U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Jerusalem remains at the heart of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem — now occupied by Israel — might eventually serve as the capital of a future Palestinian state.

READ: Why is Israel targeting Turkey’s presence in Jerusalem? 

Erdogan said criticizing the misconducts of Israel never means anti-Semitism, adding: “Some European countries side with the US and do not raise voice against Israeli occupation policies due to shameful scenes from World War II.”

Bombing children playing ball along the coast of Gaza is a crime against humanity as bad as the Holocaust, he said.

The Turkish president said Jerusalem is not merely a cause of a handful of Muslims in Palestine, but it is “our common cause.”

Erdogan thanked “heroes” who uphold the honor of Jerusalem and humanity and protect the dignity of the Muslim Ummah against occupiers.

Palestinians must put an end to discord among themselves in order to see the outcome of their friends’ efforts, the president added.

(Source / 15.12.2018)

Palestinian fisherman shot dead by Egyptian forces

A Palestinian fisherman stands on his boat in Gaza City on 26 February 2017 [MAHMUD HAMS/AFP/Getty Images]

A Palestinian fisherman stands on his boat in Gaza City on 26 February 2017

The Palestinian health ministry yesterday said that a fisherman was shot dead by the Egyptian naval forces as he was fishing off the coast of the besieged Gaza Strip.

The head of the Fishermen’s Union Committee, Zakaria Bakr, told Safa that the 32-year-old Mustafa Abu Ouda had been fishing alone in his boat off the coast of the southern border town of Rafah.

Palestinian fishermen suffer from strict Israeli restrictions on fishing, in addition to the Egyptian navy’s hurdles near the southern border of Gaza.

In recent years, at least three Palestinian fishermen were reported dead by Egyptian fire.

Read: Gaza Fisherman battles poverty with boat made of plastic bottles

(Source / 08.11.2018)

Grand Imam of Al-Azhar: Muslims Are Actual Terrorism Victims

Al-Azhar’s Grand Imam Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb gives an interview to Agence France Presse on June 9, 2015 in Florence

Al-Azhar’s Grand Imam Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb said Monday that despite Muslims being described “by brutality and violence….they are only victims of terrorism,” explaining that the reasons behind terrorism are not Islam or any other religion, but global regimes that trade religions, and morals for power.

During his speech in the opening of the Al-Azhar’s international symposium under the theme “Islam and the West: Diversity and Integration,” Tayeb added that the eastern civilization respects religion and science regardless of their source.

Tayeb continued that the terrible silence on terrorism enabled armed political movements to link Islam to other terrorist crimes.

In his speech before the attendees, Belgian former Prime Minister Yves Leterme said that the West knows that Islam is devoted to democracy and equality, stressing the importance of dialogue to achieve its goals.

Former president of Montenegro Filip Vujanovic stated that the Islamic culture is based on rejecting violence and on respecting others. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said that believers will work devotedly to lay a common ground through which risks can be faced and peace attained.

The three-day seminar, held at Al-Azhar Conference Center, will discuss a number of topics related to Islam and Europe, including tension between Muslims and others in Europe.

(Source / 23.10.2018)

IOA closes Ibrahimi Mosque to Muslim worshipers

Ibrahimi Mosque al-Khalil

The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) on Wednesday closed the Ibrahimi Mosque in al-Khalil city before Muslim worshipers in order to allow Jewish settlers to  mark Yom Kippur at the Islamic holy site.

According to director of the Ibrahimi Mosque Sheikh Hafdhi Abu Asnaina, the IOA will also close the Mosque before Muslims next Tuesday and Wednesday to allow settlers to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

The Mosque will be closed for another Jewish occasion on October 27.

The Mosque had already been closed for the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur last Sunday.

(Source / 19.09.2018)

PCHR: “Within less than 24 hours, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child”

19 SEP
3:18 AM

Date: 18 September 2018: Within less than 24 Hours and Without Posing Any Threat to Life of Soldiers: Israeli Forces Kill 4 Civilians, including Child, in Two Crimes in Southern and Northern Gaza Strip.

Within less than 24 hours, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child, and wounded 44 others, including 7 children, 2 women, 3 journalists and 2 paramedics in 2 separate crimes.

The first was in the southern Gaza Strip When Israeli warplanes launched missiles to kill 2 civilians; one of them was a child, without any justification or threat to the life of soldiers while the second was in the northern Gaza Strip when Israeli forces used excessive force against peaceful protesters near Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing.

PCHR’s investigations into the first case emphasize that the two killed were civilians who were present near the barbed-wire fence that is around 50 meters away from the main border fence.

Although no circumstances clarified the reason behind their presence in the scene, they did not pose any threat to the life of soldiers as both were unarmed; moreover, targeting them violates the principle of necessity and distinction.

In the second case, the investigations indicate that the Israeli soldiers used lethal and excessive force against the peaceful protestors who posed no threat or danger to the life of the soldiers in the protests area.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 22:30 on Monday, 17 September 2018, the Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence with Israel in eastern Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip opened fire at the area near the border fence in eastern al-Qedra, northeast of the city.

After around 20 minutes, an Israeli drone launched 2 missiles at the same area.  Later, the Spokesperson of the Israeli forces,

Avichay Adraee, declared on twitter that a military drone “attacked saboteurs who suspiciously approached the security fence in the southern Gaza Strip and planted a suspicious object near it”.  However, this was refuted by the PCHR’s investigations.

At approximately 00:15 on Tuesday, an ambulance crew belonging to the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) arrived in the vicinity of the area, and the ambulances stopped at the end of Street 2 to the east.

After coordinating with the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC), the ambulances started entering the border area and searching for possibly wounded persons.  Meanwhile, the Palestinian Liaison via phone directed the ambulance crew to where the two persons killed exactly was after the former’s contacted with the Israeli Liaison.

The PRCS crew said to PCHR’s fieldworker that at approximately 00:50 that near the barbed-wire fence established in the Palestinian territories, east of al-Qedra, that is around 50 meters away from the main border fence, they found two bodies of civilians dressed in civilian clothes.

One of them turned into pieces while the second was wounded with shrapnel throughout his body and features of his face was unclear due to the targeting.

The ambulance crew carried the two killed, taking them 300 meters away where the ambulances were parked.  They were then taken to Naser Hospital in Khan Younis.

Moreover, neither firearms nor suspicious objects were found near the bodies unlike what have been said by the Israeli Forces’ Spokesperson.

On Tuesday Afternoon, 18 September 2018, families of the 2 persons killed identified them after their photos were published on social media.  They were namely as Naji Jamil Hasan Abu ‘Aasi (17) and ‘Alaa Ziad Jamil Abu ‘Aasi (20); who are both from Bani Suhaila.

Though the circumstances have not clarified the reason behind their presence in the scene, they posed no threat to the life of Israeli soldiers as they were both civilians and unarmed, noting that the area was calm and did not witness any protests.  Moreover, many infiltrations into Israel for work there were reported in that area.

At approximately 17:00 on Tuesday, 18 September 2018, Israeli forces stationed at the Beit hanoun “Erez” Crossing in the northern Gaza Strip fired live bullets and tear gas canisters to disperse hundreds of civilians who were protesting near the crossing upon calls from the National Committee of March for Return and Breaking the Siege to participate in the “Together for the Rights of Refugees and Breaking the Siege” activity.

The Israeli Forces’ shooting resulted in the killing of 2 civilians who were identified as Mohammed Ahmed Mohammed Abu Naji (32) from Beit Lahia Housing Project who was hit with a bullet to the chest; and Ahmed Mohammed Muhsen ‘Omer (24) from al-Shati’ refugee camp who was hit with a bullet to the chest.  Both of them were taken to the Indonesian Hospital in Jabalia.

Moreover, 44 civilians, including 7 children, 2 women, 3 journalists and 2 paramedics, were wounded.  Seven of the wounded were hit with bullets while the rest were directly hit with tear gas canisters in addition to dozens who suffered tear gas inhalation.  Further, a tear gas canister hit and broke the window of a PRCS ambulance.

PCHR condemns these crimes which further prove that Israeli forces continue to use lethal forces against Palestinian civilians to kill them even though the later posed no threat to the life of soldiers.

PCHR emphasizes that continuously targeting civilians, who exercise their right to peaceful assembly or while carrying out their humanitarian duty is a serious violation of the rules of international law, international humanitarian law, the ICC Rome Statute and Fourth Geneva Convention.

Thus, PCHR calls upon the ICC Prosecutor to open an official investigation in these crimes and to prosecute and hold accountable all those applying or involved in issuing orders within the Israeli Forces at the security and political echelons.

PCHR also reiterates its call upon the High Contracting Parties to the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their obligations under Article 1; i.e., to respect and ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances and their obligations under Article 146 to prosecute persons alleged to commit grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

(Source / 19.09.2018)