Austrian police interrogates Palestinians and Arabs over alleged ties to political Islam

“Do you know Yahya Ayyash and Yasser Arafat?”, was one of the questions during interrogations

Vienna (QNN)- Austrian police started a campaign against Muslims, arresting 70 people last week as part of the government’s “war on Islamism” in the country.

The Austrian police claimed it targeted headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, which were raising funds for both political groups.

In the same context, refugee charity associations told QNN that nearly 70 workers were arrested by the police and interrogated regarding their work for refugees.

They added that those who were interrogated were asked about the Palestinian cause, especially Hamas movement, and their opinions about the occupation state.

“Some questions about beliefs have been randomly mixed with others about the Palestinian cause… do you have native Austrian friends? do you wake your children up for Fajr prayer? do you know Yahya Ayyash?”, the source said.

“The police asked them if they knew Yahya Ayyash or Yasser Arafat although that has nothing to do with the financing of terrorism.”

Most of those, whose houses were raided, were Egyptians, in addition to some Syrians and Palestinians, said the sources. Some raids were harsh, breaking the doors and using canines. The police also tried to interrogate some children to know the places where the father hides his money.

Police also seized smartphones, documents, computers and large sums of cash, but no weapons or explosives, reported the Times. Austrian media said €25 million have been confiscated from those, who were arrested. That has not been yet confirmed by the prosecutor.

The operation comes after reports of a visit by senior officials in the Egyptian intelligence three weeks ago. It also comes as part of Austria’s “war on Islamism”, called for by Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.

Kurz, at the time, told German newspaper Die Welt: “Islamist extremism wants to divide our society. This hatred should not be given space. The enemy are extremists and terrorists, not immigrants. There must be no tolerance of intolerance.”

(Source / 17.11.2020)

Thousands at Al-Aqsa Mosque protest Macron’s remarks

Palestinians seen during a protest against comments by French President Emmanuel Macron defending cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, held after the Friday Prayer outside the Dome of the Rock in the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound, in the Old City of Jerusalem, on October 30, 2020 [Mostafa Alkharouf / Anadolu Agency]
Palestinians seen during a protest against comments by French President Emmanuel Macron defending cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, held after the Friday Prayer outside the Dome of the Rock in the Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound, in the Old City of Jerusalem, on October 30, 2020

Thousands of Palestinians gathered on Friday at the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex in Jerusalem to protest French President Emmanuel Macron’s anti-Islamic remarks.

Preacher at Al-Aqsa Mosque Sheikh Ekrima Sabri condemned the republication of caricatures insulting the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), as well as Macron’s statements.

“The French president has declared his hostility towards Muslims around the world,” Sabri announced.

After Friday prayer, thousands of worshippers gathered at the Al-Aqsa complex, holding banners praising the Prophet Muhammad, criticising Macron and calling for a boycott of French products.

Israeli police prevented thousands of Palestinians from the occupied West Bank from reaching Al-Aqsa Mosque, impeding them from performing Friday prayer.

Following the demonstrations, eyewitnesses told Anadolu Agency that Israeli police chased the worshippers and arrested one of them, in addition to a cameraman.

Opinion: The humiliation of Arabs

Earlier this month, Macron described Islam as “a religion in crisis” and announced plans for tougher laws to tackle “Islamist separatism” in France.

French Muslims have accused him of trying to repress their religion and legitimising Islamophobia.

Turkey has also condemned Macron’s attitude towards Muslims and Islam, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stating that the French leader needed a “mental health check”.

Macron’s attitude towards Islam, the republication of caricatures insulting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad and their projection on the walls of buildings have triggered boycotts of French products in several countries including Qatar, Kuwait, Algeria, Sudan, Palestine and Morocco.

Read: Turkey’s Erdogan calls for boycott of French products

(Source / 31.10.2020)

Archbishop Atallah Hanna: Insulting Muslims is rejected and condemned

Occupied Jerusalem (QNN)- Archbishop Atallah Hanna Archbishop of Sevestia of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in Jerusalem on Monday said that Christian Palestinians have always carried a message of love, brotherhood, and peace and rejected the culture of hatred, sectarianism, violence, and grudge and that is why they reject insulting Islam as well as all religions.

“Driven by our Christian values and belonging to the holiest church in the world, we condemn and reject any insult against religious symbols in all religions”, Hanna said.

He added that insulting Muslims is completely rejected and condemned and that the church rejects offending Islamic religious symbols just like it rejects offending Christian religious symbols, stressing that those who insult religions and incite hatred and violence in our world do not represent any moral, spiritual, or humanitarian values.

“All humans belong to one human family created by God, who did not discriminate between people”, Hanna said. “From Jerusalem, we call on all believers to work on spread the discourse of love, tolerance, and human fraternity.”

(Source / 26.10.2020)

Hamas: French cartoons provocative to Islam, beliefs

Palestinians gather to stage a protest against the republication of offensive caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in France and the statement of French President Emmanuel Macron, in Rafah, Gaza on 24 October 2020. [Mustafa Hassona - Anadolu Agency]
Palestinians gather to stage a protest against the republication of offensive caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in France and the statement of French President Emmanuel Macron, in Rafah, Gaza on 24 October 2020

Hamas on Saturday slammed France for publishing cartoons that degrade Islamic symbols, Anadolu reports.

“[French President Emmanuel] Macron’s encouragement to publish insulting cartoons of the Prophet [Muhammad], peace be upon him, is an attempt to revive the Crusades where France was the source of its debut,” said Sami Abu Zuhri, senior spokesman for the Palestinian group.

Abu Zuhri said publishing the cartoons was “provocative to the feelings of the [Islamic] Nation and an aggression on its religion and beliefs.”

Publishing the insulting cartoons of Prophet Muhammad, along with Macron’s remarks about Islam and the Muslim community,sparked widespread condemnation in the Arab world on the official and other levels with official statements decrying his remarks.

Activists launched boycott campaigns against French products in several Arab countries.

Morocco: Hashtag calling for boycott of French products trends on Twitter 

(Source / 25.10.2020)

Erdogan says Macron needs ‘mental treatments’ following Islamophobic statements

France has recalled its envoy to Turkey for consultations after Erdogan’s comments

Istanbul (QNN)- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Saturday that French President Emmanuel Macron needs “mental treatment” because of his hostility towards Islam.

“What is Macron’s problem with Islam and Muslims? He needs mental health treatment,” Erdogan said at the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) congress in central Kayseri province.

“What can be said to a head of state that treats millions of members of a religious minority in his country this way? First of all, (he needs) mental check,” Erdogan added.

France recently started an extensive campaign against the Muslim community following Macron calling Islam a problematic religion that needs to be contained. Many non-governmental organizations and mosques have been shut down in the last two weeks, while assaults against Muslims have peaked. Several Muslims have been reportedly attacked in deadly attacks as well.

Responding to Erdogan’s comments, Paris recalled its envoy to Ankara for consultations.

“President Erdogan’s comments are unacceptable. Excess and rudeness are not a method. We demand that Erdogan change the course of his policy because it is dangerous in every respect,” a French presidential official told Agence France-Presse (AFP).

The Elysee official, who asked not to be named, also said that France had noted “the absence of messages of condolence and support” from the Turkish president after the beheading of teacher Samuel Paty outside Paris.

The attack, carried out by an 18-year-old Chechen, came following measures, restricting mosques and Muslims in the country.

The official also expressed concern over calls by Ankara for a boycott of French goods.

Macron this month described Islam as a religion “in crisis” worldwide and said the government would present a bill in December to strengthen a 1905 law that officially separated church and state in France.

(Source / 25.10.2020)

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)

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) 

HOW ANTI-MUSLIM WAR MAKES US DEMOCRACY IMPOSSIBLE

By Edward Curtis

The “usual suspects” are already being rounded up. U.S. citizens with Iranian names and backgrounds are being selected for special screening at the border. City police departments in New York and Los Angeles have vowed to be on alert for Iranian terrorists.

It’s been the same story for decades. Nearly anytime the United States has a military conflict with a country or group that is labeled Muslim, the civil and human rights of Muslims or people who “look Muslim,” whatever that means, are violated by both the U.S. government and some of its citizens.

Anti-Muslim war-making has made real democracy impossible.

I was nine when 52 white Americans were held hostage for more than a year at the U.S. embassy in Iran in 1979. As yellow ribbons went around the trees, and anger grew across the country, Iranians and brown people associated with Iranians were attacked, harassed, and questioned.

My Arab-American grandmother knew there might be trouble. At the least, she was concerned about reputational damage. I remember her telling strangers that Iranians were not Arabs, and so we had nothing to do with the hostage crisis.

I look back on that moment and realize that she was acting out of fear. And her fear was rational.

No matter how assimilated a Muslim or “Muslim-looking” person is—my grandmother was Christian—the federal government’s policies toward Muslims end up depriving U.S. citizens not only of their political rights but of their chance for social equality, too.

This practice has been rooted as much in repressing Islam among U.S.-born Black Muslims as it has been in restricting the rights of foreign-born Muslims and their families.

In the 1950s, Elijah Muhammad’s Nation of Islam gave birth to some of the most potent dissent in America. Malcolm X’s charismatic critique of white supremacist Christianity, anti-Black racism, and U.S. military intervention abroad was a serious political challenge to the U.S. during the Cold War. The government repressed the group, and the civil rights of Nation of Islam members were violated by the FBI’s Counterintelligence Program (COINTELPRO), federal prisons, and local police departments.

Though Muhammad Ali would be revered later as a principled opponent of the Vietnam War, it is hard to overestimate how much he was hated by Democrats and Republicans alike for refusing induction into the U.S. military in 1967.

That association of Muslims and Islam with “the enemy” was transformed after 1979 as so-called “Middle Eastern-looking” Muslims took center stage in the federal government’s policy-making and law enforcement.

During the 1991 Gulf War and especially after 9/11, the nation’s focus on war-making in Muslim-majority lands meant that, even as Black Americans remained the group whose civil rights were most violated, Muslims became a class of people whose basic Constitutional rights could be denied as a matter of law.

Long before President Trump implemented his legal ban on Muslim and other visitors, President Obama’s administration singled out Muslims for special treatment in domestic counter-intelligence, devoting extraordinary FBI resources to mass surveillance, undercover informants, and entrapment. The Democratic President profiled Muslims without any suspicion of guilt, used secret evidence to prosecute terrorists, and assassinated U.S. citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan in Yemen. Muslim youth became the targets of sophisticated sting operations that tried to entice them to wage a violent jihad on their fellow citizens even as right-wing neo-Nazi and other white supremacist groups grew stronger. [1]

And before President Obama, there was President Bush’s USA PATRIOT Act, extraordinary rendition, extra-legal detention at Guantanamo Bay, torture of both foreign nationals and U.S. citizens such as Brandon Mayfield, warrantless wiretaps, and a litany of human rights abuses perpetuated against Muslims both at home and abroad.

Since 9/11, the treatment of Muslims has exposed a rot at the core of American democracy, and that rot has been disturbingly bipartisan.

Too many Americans, conservative and liberal, are willing to make exceptions to the Bill of Rights when they believe their security is at risk. Too many are willing to prioritize the safety of some of us over the safety of all of us.

As the President wages war on yet more Muslims, it is important to remember that while Muslims will be its primary victims, this long war on Muslims damages what holds us together, our shared belief in human freedom and dignity for all.

(Source / 16.01.2020) 

BRITISH RACIST BEHIND ‘PUNISH A MUSLIM DAY’ JAILED FOR 12 YEARS

London (QNN)- The British racist behind a “Punish a Muslim Day”, which incited attacks on Muslims, who also sent a letter to a US mass murderer, praising his ‘ethnic cleansing’, a court heard on Monday.

David Parnham, 36, sent hate filled letters to Muslims across the country, which resulted in ‘fear and paranoia spreading across Muslim communities’.

He also sent hundreds of hate filled letters to the Queen of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, and Theresa May between June 2016 and his arrest on 12 June last year.

Parnham also praised white supremacist Dylann Roof, who murdered nine black parishioners in Charleston, South Carolina, in December 2016, the Old Bailey heard.

He admitted offences including soliciting murder, encouraging crime, bomb and noxious substance hoaxes and sending letters with intent to cause distress.

In early 2018, a series of typed “Punish A Muslim Day” letters were sent out to encourage violence on the date of an American white supremacist’s birthday.

The letters claimed Europe and North America was being “overrun” by Muslims and contained a makeshift scorecard for attacks ranging from pulling off women’s headscarves to acid attacks, torture, bombing a mosque and “butchering” Muslims with guns, knives and vehicles.

Judge Anthony Leonard QC said Parnham had been suffering from an autistic spectrum disorder but rejected the suggestion he was psychotic at the time of the offences.

(Source / 04.09.2019) 

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)