image_pdfimage_print

December 25, 2011

5 Churches Burned in Nigeria Riots; Death Toll Passes 127

Sectarian violence sparked by cartoons of Islam’s most revered figure spread to three more Nigerian cities before the end of last week, resulting in the burning of five churches and pushing the total death toll to more than 127.

by Christian TodayPosted: Monday, February 27, 2006, 15:56 (GMT)

Sectarian violence sparked by cartoons of Islam’s most revered figure spread to three more Nigerian cities before the end of last week, resulting in the burning of five churches and pushing the total death toll to more than 127.

Armed with machetes and clubs, Muslim youths in the northern Nigerian city of Potiskum on Friday attacked shops owned by mostly Christians and burned churches reported resident Ibrahim Dagbugur according to The Associated Press. It took police several hours to quell the riot that claimed the lives of four people.

The violence followed weeklong protests and violence starting Feb. 18 when Nigerian Muslims demonstrating in the northern and predominantly Muslim city of Bauchi targeted Christians and killed 18 people.

Caricatures of the Muslim prophet Muhammad – first printed in September by a Danish newspaper and reprinted in European media and elsewhere – have sparked angry protests by Muslims worldwide who consider any depiction of Allah and their prophets to be blasphemy.

Recent fighting is the worst to hit Nigeria since 2004 when Muslim-Christians clashes in northern Nigeria killed more than 700 people. Nigeria is almost entirely split between a northern Muslim population and a predominantly Christian south.

Experts have pointed out that although on the surface the violence appear to be religiously motivated, many of the past “Christian-Muslim clashes” in Nigeria were linked to ethnic, economic, and political conflicts with religious overtones.

Beside Potiskum in northeastern Yobe state, Kontagora in northern Niger state and Enugu, capital of southeastern Enugu state were also sites of violence on Friday.

In Kontagora, ten churches were burned and two people killed a resident told AP.

The mainly Christian southeastern city of Enuga witnessed at least one person killed by mobs that attacked ethnic Hausa Muslims.

According to AP, out of the 127 people killed this week in sectarian fighting in Nigeria, 80 died in the southeastern city of Onitsha.

top

November 11, 2011

Turkey: Non-Muslims protest special tax from which Muslims are exempt

“Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.” — Qur’an 9:29

Under heavy pressure from the European powers, the Ottoman Empire abolished the payment of the jizya, which is the cornerstone of the system of dhimmitude, in the 1850s. But even the secular Turkish state found a way to reestablish it under another name. As the Islamization of Turkey continues to advance, eventually this pretense will no longer be needed.

Meanwhile, how many of the learned analysts who invoke Turkey as a prime example of Islamic moderation (even though Kemalist Turkey was established by means of active and conscious restriction of political Islam) know that in secular Turkey non-Muslims pay a special tax from which Muslims are exempt, just as is directed in the Qur’an?

“Non-Muslim minorities protest wealth tax, expect apology,” by Ilyas Koç for Today’s Zaman, November 10 (thanks to Twostellas):

Victims of the discriminatory wealth tax, who are all non-Muslim minorities, demand an apology from the state 69 years after legislation was passed by Parliament on Nov. 11, 1942, requiring non-Muslims to pay a much higher rate of tax to the state.

Many well-known families in Turkey are among the victims. One such victim is the prominent Turkish Jewish businessman Hayim Alaton, the father of Alarko Holding’s executive board chairman Ýshak Alaton. Hayim Alaton was sent to Aþkale in the province of Erzurum to perform manual labor because he had failed to pay two separate taxes imposed on him.

Within the scope of wealth tax payment requirements, 1,229 non-Muslims were sent to Aþkale via the Haydarpaþa railroad station in Ýstanbul to perform the jobs assigned to them.

Ýshak Alaton and a group of his friends have stated that they will visit the Haydarpaþa railroad station on Nov. 11 in order to keep the memories of this tragic incident alive. He will be accompanied by lawyer Cem Murat Sofuoðlu, Professor Serap Yazýcý, Professor Ergun Özbudun and others.

top

October 9, 2011

Scores of Coptic Egyptian Christians in Cairo Massacred While Conducting Peaceful Sit-In

Christian Copts of California

For more information, contact: Mounir Bishay (310) 641- 3387

                                                     WWW.Calcopts@sbcglobal.net

Sunday, October 9. 2001

Press Release

Scores of Coptic Egyptian Christians in Cairo Massacred While Conducting Peaceful Sit-In

Over 100,000 Coptic Egyptian Christians gathered in peaceful protest and to stage a sit-in outside the Egyptian state television building along the Nile, on Sunday, October 9, 2011.

The sit-in was a culmination of protests that took place over the last week in Cairo and other cities across Egypt. The Copts, a large Christian minority of about 15 million, were angered over numerous increasing attacks that have resulted in the destruction of many churches. The latest of these attacks targeted a newly built church in Almiranab, Aswan, south of Egypt. The church obtained all required building permits, including the governor’s approval, yet the Muslim neighbors objected to having a church constructed in their neighborhood. A compromise was reached where the Christians agreed to remove the bells and the cross from the top of the church. However, a few days later, after being incited by the Friday Muslim sermon, a large Muslim mob came in and destroyed, then burned the church to the ground.  The attack lasted several hours yet met no intervention from state officials – no police forces or fire fighters were dispatched to save the church.

As soon as the Sunday protest reached its meeting place in front of the TV building, the protesters came under attack by hundreds of thugs, in plain clothes, as well as large forces of police and military using live ammunition. Police vehicles and military tanks scaled sidewalks and ran over peaceful protesters, crushing their bodies and instantly killing them. This massacre by the Egyptian police and military is a stark contrast to the countless protests conducted by Islamists in which the government took no action against protesters.

This is just one criminal act out of a series of hundreds of terrorist attacks against Christians that have been escalating all over Egypt in recent months. The State authorities shared the responsibility for the previous attacks due to their lack of intervention, investigation, or prosecution of the attackers and today the blood of the Christians massacred falls squarely on the hands of Egyptian State Officials.

Recent fatwas (religious Islamic sanctions) issued by top Muslim religious leaders such as the Sheikh of Al Azhar and the Grand Mufti, maintained that Christians are infidels, thus putting Christians and their churches subject to religious cleansing by Muslims.

We call upon the United Nations to conduct an international inquiry in the matter as any investigation conducted by Egyptian authorities will likely be corrupted and biased.  We ask the International community to intervene to stop the persecution of the Coptic Christians of Egypt.

top

September 30, 2011

Muslims attack Egypt Coptic church as sectarian violence continues

Coptic Church in Egypt.

CAIRO: Tension between Muslims and Copts is blazing in the southern town of Edfu after two residential buildings were set on fire, eye witnesses from the town said Friday.

The clashes started early Friday after a group of Muslim men surrounded the Mare’e Girgues church in opposition to construction expansions happening inside the church. A number of the men reportedly attempted to attack the building.

Others say others set parts of the church on fire, before turning to Coptic homes and shops in the town.

Residents said the Muslim men are attempting to prevent fire fighters from reaching the burned out buildings and several shops owned by Copts were vandalized.

Reports have not yet mentioned if there were injuries or deaths as a result of the violence.

This is the third incidents in two days that targets Coptic churches in Egypt after violence in Fayoum, south of Cairo, claimed one life after a man guarding a church was shot dead by militants who then fled the scene.

Security sources on Thursday afternoon said that a drive-by shooting in Fayoum left at least one security guard dead.

The attack apparently was outside the church’s kindergarten.

Details of the attack on the Rouda Church in the town are still murky, but according to one witness nearby, the attackers drove past the church and opened fire, in what is the most recent attack that could spark renewed fears of sectarianism in Egypt.

“I just heard the gun shots and saw that one guard was on the ground in obvious pain,” said Mona, a witness nearby.

In recent years, sectarianism has been reportedly on the rise, with both religious groups clashing in numerous towns and villages across Egypt.

This week’s incidents highlight the growing chasm that exists between the two religious groups.

top

September 30, 2011

US attack in Yemen kills al-Awlaki

By KIMBERLY DOZIER and MATT APUZZO – Associated Press | AP – 1 hr 44 mins ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a devastating double-blow to al-Qaida’s most dangerous franchise, U.S. counterterrorism forces killed two American citizens who played key roles in inspiring attacks against the U.S., U.S. and Yemeni officials said Friday. U.S-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, who edited the slick Jihadi Internet magazine, were killed in an air strike on their convoy in Yemen by a joint CIA-U.S. military operation, according to counterterrorism officials. Al-Awlaki was targeted in the killing, but Khan apparently was not targeted directly.

After three weeks of tracking the targets, U.S. armed drones and fighter jets shadowed the al-Qaida convoy before armed drones launched their lethal strike early Friday. The strike killed four operatives in all, officials said. All U.S. officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss matters of intelligence.

Al-Awlaki played a “significant operational role” in plotting and inspiring attacks on the United States, U.S. officials said Friday, as they disclosed detailed intelligence to justify the killing of a U.S. citizen. Khan, who was from North Carolina, wasn’t considered operational but had published seven issues of Inspire Magazine, offering advice on how to make bombs and the use of weapons. The magazine was widely read. Following the strike, a U.S. official outlined new details of al-Awlaki’s involvement in anti-U.S. operations, including the attempted 2009 Christmas Day bombing of a U.S.-bound aircraft. The official said that al-Awlaki specifically directed the men accused of trying to bomb the Detroit-bound plane to detonate an explosive device over U.S. airspace to maximize casualties.

The official also said al-Awlaki had a direct role in supervising and directing a failed attempt to bring down two U.S. cargo aircraft by detonating explosives concealed inside two packages mailed to the U.S. The U.S. also believes Awlaki had sought to use poisons, including cyanide and ricin, to attack Westerners.

The U.S. and counterterrorism officials all spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss intelligence matters. Al-Awlaki was killed by the same U.S. military unit that got Osama bin Laden. Al-Awlaki is the most prominent al-Qaida figure to be killed since bin Laden’s death in May.

U.S. word of al-Awlaki’s death came after the government of Yemen reported that he had been killed Friday about five miles from the town of Khashef, some 87 miles from the capital Sanaa.

The air strike was carried out more openly than the covert operation that sent Navy SEALs into bin Laden’s Pakistani compound, U.S. officials said.

Counterterrorism cooperation between the United States and Yemen has improved in recent weeks, allowing better intelligence-gathering on al-Awlaki’s movements, U.S. officials said. The ability to better track him was a key factor in the success of the strike, U.S. officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.

Al-Awlaki’s death is the latest in a run of high-profile kills for Washington under President Barack Obama. But the killing raises questions that the death of other al-Qaida leaders, including bin Laden, did not.

Al-Awlaki is a U.S. citizen, born in New Mexico to Yemeni parents, who had not been charged with any crime. Civil liberties groups have questioned the government’s authority to kill an American without trial.

Awlaki’s father, Nasser al-Awlaki of Yemen, had sued President Barack Obama and other administration officials 13 months ago to try to stop them from targeting his son for death. The father, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights, argued that international law and the Constitution prevented the administration from assassinating his son unless he presented a specific imminent threat to life or physical safety and there were no other means to stop him.

But U.S. District Judge John Bates threw out the lawsuit in December, saying a judge does not have authority to review the president’s military decisions and that Awlaki’s father did not have the legal right to sue on behalf of his son. But Bates also seemed troubled by the facts of the case, which he wrote raised vital considerations of national security and for military and foreign affairs. For instance, the judge questioned why courts have authority to approve surveillance of Americans overseas but not their killing and whether the president could order an assassination of a citizen without “any form of judicial process whatsoever.”

U.S. officials have said they believe al-Awlaki inspired the actions of Army psychiatrist Maj. Nidal Hasan, who is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder in the attack at Fort Hood, Texas.

In New York, the Pakistani-American man who pleaded guilty to the May 2010 Times Square car bombing attempt said he was “inspired” by al-Awlaki after making contact over the Internet.

Al-Awlaki also is believed to have had a hand in mail bombs addressed to Chicago-area synagogues, packages intercepted in Dubai and Europe in October 2010.

Al-Awlaki’s death “will especially impact the group’s ability to recruit, inspire and raise funds as al-Awlaki’s influence and ability to connect to a broad demographic of potential supporters was unprecedented,” said terrorist analyst Ben Venzke of the private intelligence monitoring firm, the IntelCenter. But Venzke said the terror group al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula will remain the most dangerous regional arm “both in its region and for the direct threat it poses to the U.S. following three recent failed attacks,” with its leader Nasir al-Wahayshi still at large.

Al-Awlaki wrote an article in the latest issue of the terror group’s magazine justifying attacking civilians in the West. It’s titled “Targeting the Populations of Countries that Are at War with the Muslims.”

Al-Awlaki served as imam at the Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Falls Church, Va., a Washington suburb, for about a year in 2001.

The mosque’s outreach director, Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, has said that mosque members never saw al-Awlaki espousing radical ideology while he was there and that he believes Awlaki’s views changed after he left the U.S.

top

September 29, 2011

Iranian Pastor Faces Execution for Refusing to Recant Christian Faith

By Joshua Rhett Miller
Published September 29, 2011
| FoxNews.com

The lawyer of an Iranian pastor sentenced to death for refusing to renounce his Christian faith is hopeful an appeals court will acquit his client.

Attorney Mohammad Ali Dadkhah says he believes there’s a “95 percent chance” of acquittal for 32-year-old Yusuf Naderkhani.

Dadkhah told The Associated Press on Thursday that he has appeared before the appeals court over the past four days and expects a ruling by the end of next week.

An undated photograph circulated by religious rights organizations shows Yusuf Naderkhani and his family.

An undated photograph provided by the American Center for Law & Justice shows Yusuf Naderkhani, an Iranian pastor who faces execution for refusing to recant his Christian faith.

Related Stories

Facing Execution for the ‘Crime’ of Being a Christian In Iran
He says neither Iranian law nor clerics have ever stipulated the death penalty as punishment for converting from Islam to Christianity.

Additionally, CBN News is reporting that the death penalty sentence for Naderkhani may be overturned.

Jordan Sekulow of the American Center for Law and Justice said in an email Wednesday evening that he’d gotten word of the chief judge’s decision, although official notice from the court had not yet been received.

He stressed that the ruling doesn’t mean that Naderkhani “will be set free without some additional punishment, potentially a long jail sentence or worse.”

Naderkhani, who maintains he has never been a Muslim as an adult, has Islamic ancestry and therefore must recant his faith in Jesus Christ, the 11th branch of Iran’s Gilan Provincial Court ruled. Iran’s Supreme Court had ordered the trial court to determine whether Naderkhani had been a Muslim prior to converting to Christianity.

The judges, according to the American Center for Law & Justice, demanded that Naderkhani recant his Christian faith before submission of evidence. Though the judgment runs against current Iranian and international laws and is not codified in Iranian penal code, the judge stated that the court must uphold the decision of the 27th Branch of the Supreme Court in Qom.

When asked to repent, Naderkhani stated: “Repent means to return. What should I return to? To the blasphemy that I had before my faith in Christ?”

“To the religion of your ancestors, Islam,” the judge replied, according to the American Center for Law & Justice.
“I cannot,” Naderkhani said.

An unnamed source close to Naderkhani’s attorney, Mohammed Ali Dadkhah, told the American Center for Law and Justice that a judge has agreed to overturn Naderkhani’s death sentence, but the report could not be independently confirmed.
Even if the sentence is overturned, Jordan Sekulow, the executive director of the ACLJ, said the message is that it would be unlikely that Naderkhani would be set free.

Naderkhani is the latest Christian cleric to be imprisoned in Iran for his religious beliefs. According to Elam Ministries, a United Kingdom-based organization that serves Christian churches in Iran, there was a significant increase in the number of Christians arrested solely for practicing their faith between June 2010 and January 2011. A total of 202 arrests occurred during that six-month period, including 33 people who remained in prison as of January, Elam reported.

An Assyrian evangelical pastor, Rev. Wilson Issavi, was imprisoned for 54 days for allegedly converting Muslims prior to his release in March 2010, Elam officials told FoxNews.com.

Naderkhani, a pastor in the 400-member Church of Iran, has been held in that country’s Gilan Province since October 2009, after he protested to local education authorities that his son was forced to read from the Koran at school. His wife, Fatemeh Pasandideh, was also arrested in June 2010 in an apparent attempt to pressure him to renounce his faith. She was released in October 2010, according to Amnesty International.

Naderkhani was sentenced to death for apostasy last September based on religious writings by Iranian clerics, including Ayatollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, despite the fact that there is no offense of “apostasy” in the nation’s penal code, Amnesty International reports.

In June, the Supreme Court of Iran ruled that a lower court should re-examine procedural flaws in the case, giving local judges the power to decide whether to release, execute or retry Naderkhani. The verdict, according to Amnesty International, includes a provision for the sentence to be overturned should Naderkhani renounce his faith.

Elise Auerbach, an Iranian analyst for Amnesty International USA, told FoxNews.com that an execution for apostasy has not been carried out in Iran since 1990. Naderkhani’s sentence is a “clear violation of international law,” she said.
“The key is to keep up the pressure and to publicize the story because it obviously outrages most people,” Auerbach said. “It’s part of the pattern of persecution based on religion in Iran.”

Kiri Kankhwende, a spokeswoman for Christian Solidarity Worldwide, a human rights organization that specializes in religious freedom, told FoxNews.com that Naderkhani was asked for the fourth time to renounce his faith during a hearing early Wednesday and he denied that request.

“We’re waiting to hear the final outcome,” she told FoxNews.com. “We’re still waiting to hear what they’ve decided.”

Kankhwende said Naderkhani could be executed Wednesday or Thursday.
“Iran is unpredictable,” she said. “We can’t say when it might happen. It’s a very real threat, but we can’t say when exactly.”

Officials at the U.S. State Department declined to comment when reached on Wednesday.Attempts to reach his attorney, Mohammed Ali Dadkhah, were not successful.

House Speaker John Boehner said Naderkhani’s case is “distressing for people of every country and creed,” according to a statement released on Wednesday.
“While Iran’s government claims to promote tolerance, it continues to imprison many of its people because of their faith,” the statement read. “This goes beyond the law to an issue of fundamental respect for human dignity. I urge Iran’s leaders to abandon this dark path, spare [Naderkhani’s] life, and grant him a full and unconditional release.”

Father Jonathan Morris, a Catholic priest in the Archdiocese of New York and an analyst for Fox News Channel, said Naderkhani’s case is “unmistakable evidence” that Iran is executing Christians simply because they refuse to become Muslims.
Morris continued: “Will President Obama, and the free world, allow the United Nations to continue in its cowardly silence on this matter?”

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/09/28/iranian-pastor-faces-execution-for-refusing-to-recant-christian-faith/#ixzz1ZMLJHJ4O

top

September 16, 2011

NGO report: 93,000 Copts left Egypt since March

Nearly 93,000 Coptic Christians have left Egypt since 19 March, a report by an Egypt-based Coptic NGO has said. The number may increase to 250,000 by the end of 2011, according to Naguib Gabriel, the head of the Egyptian Federation of Human Rights, which released the report.

The current trend of Coptic immigration endangers the structure of Egypt’s population, Gabriel told Al-Masry Al-Youm on Sunday. He urged the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) and the Egyptian cabinet to work on curbing the phenomenon.

Gabriel based the data stated in the report on information from Coptic churches and communities abroad.

“Nearly 16,000 migrated to California, while 10,000 moved to New Jersey, 8000 to New York, and 8000 to other American states,” according to Gabriel. “Around 14,000 left to Australia, 17,000 to Canada, and 20,000 settled in the Netherlands, Italy, England, Austria, Germany and France.”

Gabriel attributed the Coptic emigration to hardline Salafi groups seeking to apply Islamic law, deny Copts senior government posts, and reduce incoming tourism. He also blamed attacks on Coptic churches and the government’s failure to bring attackers to justice.

Coptic author Kamal Zakher said the numbers in the report were exaggerated, but that concern over Coptic immigration is justifiable. Migration procedures take up to a year to complete, so it is illogical to say the January revolution caused the Copts to leave the country, Zakher said.

The head of the Evangelical denomination in Egypt, Safwat al-Bayadi, also voiced his anxiety about Coptic immigration, noting that the continuation of the trend depends on the political forces ruling the country in the future.

Christians form nearly 10 percent of Egypt’s population. Following the ouster of former President Hosni Mubarak in February, concerns have been growing among Christians over the mounting political influence of Islamist groups, some of which view Copts as infidels and deny them the right to assume top government posts.

However, Egypt’s biggest Islamist group, the Muslim Brotherhood, had stressed Christians’ right to the presidency and accepted them as members in its political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

top

September 9, 2011

Muslims Blockade Christian Village in Egypt, Demand Demolition of Church

(AINA) — Christians in the Upper Egyptian village of Elmarinab in Edfu, Aswan province, have been forbidden to leave their homes or buy food until they remove the dome of St. George’s Church, which was rebuilt in its previous location. Village Muslims, backed by Muslim Salafists from neighboring villages, have threatened to demolish the church on Friday September 9 after prayers and use it as a mosque.
Despite the presence of security forces, Muslims have blocked the roads to the village, refusing passage of any Christians under any circumstance.

Yesterday the military governor in Aswan was contacted as Christians were starving in their homes. Security officers were sent and accompanied two Christian youths to buy food for the villagers. Muslims at the entrance of the village tried to stop the two security cars. “Failing that they threatened that this would be the last time,” said one villager. “It was heart-breaking to see the elderly running with the children to get a loaf of bread.”

On Friday September 2, a “reconciliation” meeting was held under the auspices of security between Muslims and Christians in which the Christians were forced to give in to the Muslim demands of the new church being stripped of crosses, bells and outside microphones (which churches never have).

“For the sake of peace we agreed to their demands,” said Father Makarios Boulos, “although the approved permit included crosses, bells and domes.”

On Tuesday evening, the same Muslims who attended the reconciliation meeting started to congregate near the church demanding the removal of the six small domes, which would, according to the church’s priest, make the whole church collapse if removed.

Muslims also demanded removal of any signs of it being a church. “It has to be called a ‘hospitality home,'” Father Makarios said.

Confronted with escalating Muslim demands, the Bishop of Aswan, Anba Hedra, refused and warned those who incite sectarian violence, pointing to the fact that the church was rebuilt legally, and any concessions on the part of the church was done for the love for the country, which is passing through a difficult phase. The military council was asked to send troops to protect the village against Muslim violence.

Early this morning two army tanks arrived at the village, manned by officers. The military governor paid a visit to the village today together with area heads of security to solve this crisis.

They listened to the Muslims, who insisted the previous church was not a church, but a hospitality home. The Coptic side was represented by Father Makarious Boulos, Father Salib Elias of the Aswan Coptic Diocese and lawyers representing the church, who presented all valid documents.

According to Mr. Mikhail, a worker at St. George’s Church, who was interviewed by Coptic TV, the Muslims were not represented by any official. “They said they are people who have control over the Muslim youths.”

Muslims chanted “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the greatest) and said they want the church razed. Mikhail said Security tried to calm them down but fearing the situation would turn for the worse, the meeting was recessed with the promise that “the army and security representatives will come to a solution acceptable to both parties before they leave the village.”

The authorities demanded that no construction be carried out or services held in the church, and Muslims to refrain from violence.

Muslims have been spreading news that the new church was never a church but a hospitality home. Father Makarios said that the church was always a church and has been protected by the police for twelve years and they already have a hospitality home one block away.

The church of St. George, built a century ago with soft bricks and palm tree branches, was so dilapidated the local council said it would be unsafe to carry out services there. The church was given permission by the Aswan Governor in June 2010 to rebuild, and the authorities had approved the design. In June 2011 the building of the church began and services were held.

Father Makarious said the village Muslims never showed any bad feelings when permission for the rebuilding the old church was issued. “The church was nearly complete when Muslims started to complain.”

Village Copts have warned that any attack on their church will lead to sectarian clashes. It was reported that some Coptic youth are inside the church guarding it against potential vandalism. Copts have also reported that while they are detained in their homes, Muslims have destroyed their crops.

Egyptians Against Religious Discrimination (EARD) reported the incident to the justice committee affiliated to the Prime Minister’s office. A statement issued by EARD today condemed the incitement to demolish the domes of St. George’s Church. The statement accused the Salafists of inciting the village Muslims against the Copts and criticized the “obvious indifference, amounting to collusion, of officials responsible for the security of the country.” The statement held the Military Council responsible should of any harm come to the Copts, their property or their church together with its bells, crosses and domes.

Dr. Naguib Gabriel, head of the Egyptian Union of Human Rights Organization (EUHRO), said this incident is one in a series of persecutions and attacks on Copts and their churches. “The Muslim Brotherhood announced immediately after the revolution that it is impossible to build any new church in Egypt, and churches which are demolished should never be rebuilt, as well as no crosses over churches or bells to be rung.”

Dr. Gabriel, who is a Copt, said the siege of the Copts in their homes is an “international crime” where a minority, just because of its religion, is imprisoned in homes and threatened with destruction of their religious buildings. “When we bring the Coptic case to the International community, no one should blame the Copts or accuse them of exaggeration when they highlight the Muslim intolerance in Egypt.”
By Mary Abdelmassih

top

August 31, 2011

Muslims, police scuffle at Rye Playland over amusement park’s head scarf ban; 15 arrests made

NY Daily News

 

CORINNE LESTCH AND BILL HUTCHINSON, DAILY NEWS WRITERS

Police on the scene at Playland on Tuesday (Norman Y. Lono for NY Daily News)

Rye Playland was shut down Tuesday after cops scuffled with Muslims upset that women wearing head scarves were barred from the rides, witnesses said.

Fifteen people, including three women, were charged with disorderly conduct and assault in the chaos, authorities said.

The Westchester County park was packed with Muslims celebrating Eid-ul-Fitr –  the holiday marking the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.

One woman, Entisai Ali, began arguing with cops over the amusement park’s head scarf, or hijab, rule, said Dena Meawad, 18, of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.

The ban, which is not Muslim specific, was imposed about 3 years ago mostly to prevent hats from falling onto the tracks of roller coasters and other rides, park officials said.

“The cops started getting loud with her and she started getting loud, too. They pushed her on the ground and arrested her,” Meawad said.

Her cousin, Kareem Meawad, 17, went to try to protect the woman and was beaten by cops and also arrested, she added. Her brother, Issam Meawad, 20, was pushed to the ground and taken into custody when he tried to help his cousin, she said.

“She just wanted to get on a ride. That was it,” Dena Meawad said of the initial confrontation. “It’s clear, this all happened because we’re Muslim.”

John Hodges, chief inspector of Westchester County Public Safety, insisted that police did not use excessive force.

He said up to 100 cops from surrounding departments converged on the park.

Two park rangers were injured in the melee, prompting felony assault charges against two people arrested, officials said.

The ugly incident happened just after 1 p.m. The event was organized by the Muslim American Society of New York, and attracted 3,000 Muslims from Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Westchester County.

Ali’s sister, Ayman Alrabah, 24, of Brooklyn said her husband, brother and father were all tackled by cops and put into handcuffs when they tried to help her sister.

Alrabah said she was unaware of the head-scarf rule until she and her sister tried to get on the park’s Dragon Coasters.

“We requested a refund and all of a sudden an argument became a riot,” Alrabah said. “Cops came. They were hitting my brother, my dad. My husband was on the floor and they were handcuffing him.

She said her 4-year-old son was “traumatized” by seeing his father arrested.

“They treated us like animals, like we were nothing,” Alrabah said. “They came with their dogs and sticks. We came to have fun.”

‘It’s clear, this all happened because we’re Muslim,’ says Dena Meawad. (Norman Y. Lono for NY Daily News)

The park was closed for about two hours because of the fracas. It reopened at about 6 p.m.

Peter Tartaglia, deputy commissioner of Westchester County Parks, said the Muslim American Society of New York was warned in advance of the rule barring head scarves on rides for safety reasons.

“Part of our rules and regulations, which we painstakingly told them over and over again, is that certain rides you cannot wear any sort of headgear,” Tartaglia said. “It’s a safety issue for us on rides, it could become a projectile.”

Many Muslims were given refunds as they left the park disappointed.

“In this heightened state of Islamaphobia, a woman wearing a hajib is an easy target these days,” said Zead Ramadan, president of the Council on American-Islamic RelationsNew York. “Unfortunately, this turned ugly due to a lot of miscommunication.”

Photos: Top: Police respond to Rye Playland on Tuesday (Norman Y. Lono for NY Daily News)

Bottom: ‘It’s clear, this all happened because we’re Muslim,’ says Dena Meawad. (Norman  Y. Lono for NY Daily News)

top

July 16, 2011

HB 1388 PASSED

You just spent $20,000,000 to move members/supporters of Hamas, a terrorist organization, to the United States ; housing, food, transportation, the whole enchilada.

HB 1388 PASSED

Whether you are an Obama fan, or not, EVERYONE IN THE U.S. Needs to know….

H.R. 1388 was passed, behind our backs. You may want to read about it…

It wasn’t mentioned on the news… Just went by on the ticker tape at the bottom of the CNN screen.

Obama funds $20M in tax payer dollars to immigrate Hamas Refugees to the USA . This is the news that did not, and will not, make the headlines.

By executive order, President Barack Hussien Obama has ordered the expenditure of $20.3 million in “migration assistance” to the Palestinian refugees and “conflict victims” in Gaza .

The “presidential determination” (ain’t that nice?) which allows hundreds of thousands of Palestinians with ties to Hamas to resettle in the United States , was signed and appears in the Federal Register.

Few on Capitol Hill, or in the media, took note that the order provides a free ticket replete with housing, transportation and food allowances to individuals who have displayed their overwhelming support to the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) in the parliamentary election of January 2006.

Now we learn that he is allowing thousands of Palestinian refuges to move to, and live in, the US at American taxpayer expense.

These important, and insightful, issues are being “lost” in the blinding bail-outs and “stimulation” packages.

Doubtful? To verify this for yourself: www.thefederalregister.com/d.p/2009-02-04-E9-2488

YOU MUST PASS THIS ON… AMERICA NEEDS TO KNOW…

top

June 24, 2011

Bulletin of Islamic Attacks: May 26 – June 20, 2011

May 26, 2011
Pakistan
Muslim landowners use tractors to plough over a Christian cemetery in order to seize the land illegally. A 29-year-old mother is drugged and raped by six men. In both cases, police covers up for the culprits. Government must act, Faisalabad priest says.

May 27, 2011
Egypt
A Military court in Egypt has sentenced three Christian Copts to 5-years imprisonment on charges of possession of firearms and pocket knives. The Court released all other Muslims and Copts arrested following clashes on May 19 over the re-opening of St. Mary and St. Abraham churches in Ain Shams West.

Defense lawyer Abraham Edward said “This is a very unjust, severe and cruel verdict.” He said that as lawyers they are unable to fathom what is going on. “Today’s case is very strange, a case where there is not one shred of evidence to indict them. If this case went in front of the International Court of Justice they would all be set free.” He criticized the five-year prison sentence handed down to Ayad Emad Ayad for carrying a pocket knife.

Pakistan (Hat tip to Jihadwatch)
A powerful Muslim businessman, with the help of a group of accomplices, kidnapped two Christian sisters, forced them to convert to Islam and marry him. The girl’s father reported the kidnapping to the police but the police blocked investigations by reversing the facts: the daughters fled because of their father’s violence. A priest from Faisalabad points out that the kidnapping of young women has become “common practice”, because the authorities and police are “puppets in the hands of extremists.” Update HERE. More HERE.

Algeria
An Algerian Christian was sentenced to five years imprisonment for blasphemy on Wednesday after sharing his Christian faith with a neighbor. The verdict came days after authorities forced the permanent closure of seven Protestant churches in Algeria’s Béjaia province. More HERE.

May 29, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
An Egyptian military court on Sunday sentenced two Coptic Christians to five years in jail for violence and trying to turn a factory into an unlicensed church, judicial sources said. The two men, also convicted of possessing weapons, were arrested on May 18 after clashes between Christians and Muslims in Cairo’s Ain Shams district as the Copts planned to hold prayers in the building. A Coptic-led group that took part in a reconciliation meeting between the two sides says the two men are innocent and their lawyers will try to appeal the ruling.

May 30, 2011
Iraq
Iraq’s Christian community has been the victim of another targeted killing. This morning, an Orthodox Christian was killed in Mosul, northern Iraq. The dead man had been the victim of two attempted ransom abductions in the past, but in both cases, he was able to escape from his attackers. This time, the murderers waited for him as he went to work, firing at him several times in cold blood.

May 31, 2011
Pakistan/Iraq/Egypt
Raped and Ransacked in the Muslim World by Raymond Ibrahim. “Plundering the possessions, lives, and dignity of Christians in the Islamic world: is this a random affair, a product of the West’s favorite offenders-poverty, ignorance, grievance-or is it systematic, complete with ideological backing?”

June 1, 2011
Nazareth (Hat tipt to JihadWatch)
A senior Roman Catholic cleric in the Holy Land says the Christian community is in danger of dying out in Nazareth, an Israeli Arab city where Christians believe Jesus spent his youth. Bishop Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo says many of Nazareth’s minority Christians began emigrating more than a decade ago largely because of tensions with local Islamists.

Pakistan
Armed Muslims disrupted the worship service of a church outside Lahore on Sunday (May 29), cursing the congregation, smashing a glass altar and desecrating Bibles and a cross, Christian leaders said.

June 6, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The Islamic party of Pakistan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam, has filed an appeal to the Supreme Court of Pakistan and launched a campaign asking to ban the circulation of the Bible, described as a “pornographic ” and “blasphemous book”. This is a new attack against the Christian community in Pakistan, frightened by the attacks and threats suffered after the death of Bin Laden, already under attack due to the damaging effects of the blasphemy law, with the consequence of death penalty to those who insult the Koran or the Prophet Muhammad.

June 7, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Several provincial legislators in Punjab belonging to the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) have objected to Punjab cabinet member Kamran Michael presenting the budget on grounds that he is Christian.

Pakistan (Hat tip to AtlasShrugs)
An Islamist politcal party in Pakistan has called on the country’s Supreme Court to investigate “blasphemous” and “pornographic” passages of the Bible, appealing to Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy law. In response, the Catholic bishop of Lahore has appealed to the faithful to resist this provocation and asked for prayer and patience.

June 8, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to Translating Jihad)
This video shows Shaykh Ashraf Yusuf Hassan in the middle of a mob of Muslims, calling on them to burn down churches in the Cairo district of Imbaba. The original Arabic-language video was posted on YouTube on 9 May, just two days after the church was burned down. Twelve were killed and 52 wounded in just the latest round of violence against Egypt’s Coptic Christian minority. Apparently 48 Muslims and Christians have been arrested in connection with this incident, yet reportedly the man in this video continues to go free.

June 8, 2011
Indonesia
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has expressed “grave concerns” about increased violence against Christians and other religious minorities in Indonesia and urged the government to tackle Islamic extremism.

The Christian group visited survivors of clashes that killed several people, and spoke with officials of churches in cities Bekasi and Bandung, which “were forced to close”. CSW stressed several pastors complained that they “faced increasing harassment, threats and attacks.” Pastor Palti Panjetan of the HKBP Filadelfia church in Bekasi said despite winning a court ruling granting permission to use their building, the local mayor has forbidden the congregation to use the church.

June 9, 2011
Nigeria
Police in northern Nigeria said on Thursday they have arrested 14 suspected Islamists thought to be linked to bomb attacks on a church and police stations that killed 14 people this week. The arrests were made in the troubled city of Maiduguri, where attacks blamed on an extremist sect have killed dozens in recent months. More HERE. Update HERE.

June 10, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Eritrean Christians fleeing persecution in their homeland are facing imprisonment, torture, beatings and sexual assault in Egypt, reports Barnabas Fund. The charity, which supports the persecuted church worldwide, estimates that hundreds of Eritrean Christian refugees have been subjected to terrible abuse after arriving in Egypt.

Egypt is the most popular destination for Christians escaping from Eritrea, one of the most hostile countries in the world for followers of the faith.

June 11, 2011
Pakistan
Pakistani anti-terrorism court acquitted 70 people who, in various roles, were involved in the Gojra massacre of August 2009 (see Fareed Khan, “Eight Christians burned alive in Punjab,” in AsiaNews, 2 August 2009). The anti-Christian violence broke out following blasphemy allegations. During a wedding, a group of Christians supposedly burnt pages of the Qur’an, a pretext used to strike at the religious minority.

During the attack by hundreds of extremists (brought in by bus and trucks), ten people died, eight burnt alive. Four churches and various homes were also set on fire.

Egypt (Hat tip to NewEnglishReview)
Five weeks after the fall of the Egyptian regime, Ayman Anwar Mitri’s apartment was torched. When he showed up to investigate, he was bundled inside by bearded Islamists.

Mr. Mitri is a member of the Christian Coptic minority that accounts for one-tenth of the country’s 83 million people. The Islamists accused him of having rented the apartment-by then unoccupied-to loose Muslim women.

Inside the burnt apartment, they beat him with the charred remains of his furniture. Then, one of them produced a box cutter and performed what he considered an appropriate punishment under Islam: He amputated Mr. Mitri’s right ear. “When they were beating me, they kept saying: ‘We won’t leave any Christians in this country,'” Mr. Mitri recalled in a recent interview, two months after the March attack. “Here, there is a war against the Copts,” he said. His attackers, who were never arrested or prosecuted, follow the ultrafundamentalist Salafi strain of Islam that promotes an austere, Saudi-inspired worldview.

June 12, 2011
Nigeria (Hat tip to AtlasShrugs)
An extremist Islamic group is being held responsible for a series of recent attacks in Nigeria, which have left 16 dead and destroyed the Catholic Cathedral of St. Patrick in the northern capital city of Maiduguri. St. Patrick’s Cathedral was seriously damaged, windows and doors destroyed, the whole building was shaken to its foundations by the violence of the explosion.

Kosovo (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The Kosmet Strategic Network NGO, which gathers 70 Serb organizations of that type, has communicated that few days ago the church was broken into and turned into a public toilet and waste dump. The attacks on this church have been going on constantly even after the arrival of international forces in 1999, when the sanctity was burned from inside.

Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
On the night of March 8, Yasser Makram was on his way home from work, his pickup truck full of garbage, as he turned up the winding dirt road on the edge of Egypt’s capital to approach his home in the crowded Cairo slum known popularly as Garbage City. As he inched around a curve, he saw in his rearview mirror a swarm of people running toward the truck. “I didn’t know what was happening,” he says. Before he could consider the possibilities, the mob pulled him from the truck. “They demanded to know if I was Christian.”

Makram’s hospital report says the 27-year-old suffered “nerve damage” and “multiple deep wounds and fractures” that night. A long, sinister scar – a knife wound – now cuts across his face, ear to ear. And it will be at least a year before he can drive his garbage truck again. The mob stabbed him in the chest and beat him with pipes, breaking an arm and one of his ribs, before stripping him naked and dragging him, semiconscious, up a dark and dusty road to the foot of the Citadel, a medieval Islamic fort.

Three months later, no one has been charged with the crime, the police apparently having shown no interest in filing a report while Makram was hospitalized. And Makram has no idea who his attackers were. But he remembers their response to the strangers who finally intervened to help him: “This is a Christian son of a bitch,” they said. “We’re going to kill him.”

Egypt
Five weeks after the fall of the Egyptian regime, Ayman Anwar Mitri’s apartment was torched. When he showed up to investigate, he was bundled inside by bearded Islamists. Mr. Mitri is a member of the Christian Coptic minority that accounts for one-tenth of the country’s 83 million people. The Islamists accused him of having rented the apartment–by then unoccupied–to loose Muslim women.

Inside the burnt apartment, they beat him with the charred remains of his furniture. Then, one of them produced a box cutter and performed what he considered an appropriate punishment under Islam: He amputated Mr. Mitri’s right ear.

“When they were beating me, they kept saying: ‘We won’t leave any Christians in this country,'” Mr. Mitri recalled in a recent interview, two months after the March attack. Blood dripped through a plastic tube from his unhealed wound to a plastic container. “Here, there is a war against the Copts,” he said.

June 13, 2011
Algeria
The High Commissioner of police in Bejaia ordered all Christian churches closed, including places of worship still under construction; if not, the commissioner threatened “severe consequences and punishments” would result.

Pakistan
Sheikhupura police this month tortured a young Christian woman into revealing the whereabouts of the legal team helping her family after an influential Muslim family kidnapped her and her sister, sources said.
Police also helped the Muslim family beat relatives of the Christian woman on court premises and attacked the offices of the organization trying to help her family, they said.

June 14, 2011
Pakistan
Pakistan’s Islamist party, Jamiat-Ulema-e-Islami (JUI), has petitioned to have the Bible banned from Pakistan because it violates the nation’s notorious blasphemy laws. The move by the JUI is just the latest episode in the ongoing and increasingly deadly persecution of Christians in that Islamic nation.

According to JUI leader Maulana Abdul Rauf Farooqi, the Bible contains passages that show biblical figures whom Muslims regard as prophets (such as Abraham and Solomon) to be engaging in “a variety of moral crimes.” As such, the JUI has called on Pakistan’s supreme court to have the entire Book banned from the country if the offending passages are not removed.

June 15, 2011
Pakistan
At least 10 Christian families in a village in Pakistan’s Punjab Province have fled their homes after a throng of area Muslims accused a Christian of blaspheming Islam on Friday, June 10th.

Britain (Hat tip to GatesofVienna)
A debate on the treatment of Christians took place on May 24th in the oldest building on the Parliamentary estate, Westminster Hall. While much was said about the appalling way in which Christians are systematically persecuted throughout the world today, attention was also paid to the way in which citizens of the United Kingdom are maltreated due to their Christian faith.

June 17, 2011
USA – Dearborn, MI (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Pastor Terry Jones led a rally against radical Islam at city hall before trying to continue his protest at the nearby Arab International Festival, but he never made it there. Protesters got physical with Jones as he tried to head for the festival. He barely made it off the corner of Michigan and Schaefer. Dearborn police made several arrests after urging the pastor to take a car instead of trying to walk the two miles to the festival. More HERE.

Pakistan
The students of a madrassa tried to force a Christian child to convert to Islam. His uncle was attacked for defending him, and accused of blasphemy. A priest said, “This is a common practice in the region. Many cases of forced conversions are not made known”. The authorities turn a blind eye to the problem.

Pakistan
Christians in Pakistan remained fearful Thursday, June 16, after a court in Pakistan acquitted 70 Muslims who were suspected of killing Christians in one of the country’s worst sectarian clashes in recent memory. At least eight Christians burned to death in August 2009, in what became known as the “Gojra Massacre” named after the town where the killings took place, some 160 kilometers (100 miles) outside Punjab province’s capital, Lahore. Two others also died in separate attacks on Gojra’s Christian colony by Muslim extremists, and churches and homes were reportedly set on fire.

However a Pakistani anti-terrorism court acquitted the 70 suspects, citing an absence of Christian witnesses in the courtroom and a lack of evidence against the accused, trial observers said.

June 20, 2011
Uzbekistan
Recently a Christian in eastern Uzbekistan was beaten by police, another was threatened with death by an axe while a Baptist congregation was promised prison for failure to co-operate in a pre-trial investigation of their pastor.

Poland
Poland has granted asylum to 16 Christian refugees who accompanied Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski on a flight back from Tunisia.The Foreign Ministry said Friday, June 17, that the six adults and 10 children were “political refugees” from Eritrea and Nigeria, whose lives have been upturned by recent turmoil in North Africa.

top

June 6, 2011

Al-Qaida militant killed in US strike in Pakistan

By ISHTIAQ MEHSUD, Associated Press – 1 hr 20 mins ago

DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan – A top al-Qaida commander and possible replacement for Osama bin Laden was killed in an American drone-fired missile strike close to the Afghan border, a fax from the militant group he heads and a Pakistani intelligence official said Saturday.

Ilyas Kashmiri’s apparent death is another blow to al-Qaida just over a month after bin Laden was killed by American commandos in a northwest Pakistani army town. Described by U.S. officials as al-Qaida’s military operations chief in Pakistan, the 47-year-old Pakistani was one of five most-wanted militant leaders in the country, accused of a string of bloody attacks in South Asia, including the 2008 Mumbai massacre, as well as aiding plots in the West. Washington had offered a $5 million bounty for information leading to his location.

His death was not confirmed publicly by the United States or Pakistani officials. Verifying who has been killed in the drone strikes is difficult. Initial reports have turned out to be wrong in the past, including one in September 2009 that said Kashmiri had been killed. Sometimes they are never formally denied or confirmed by authorities here or in the United States.

But a fax from the militant group he was heading — Harakat-ul-Jihad al-Islami’s feared “313 Brigade” — confirmed Kashmiri was “martyred” in the strike at 11:15 p.m. Friday in South Waziristan tribal region. It was sent to journalists in Peshawar.

“God willing, America, which is the ‘pharaoh’ of this, will soon see a revenge attack, and our real target is America,” it said. The statement was handwritten written on a white page bearing name of the group, which has not previously communicated with the media.

The Pakistani official also said Kashmiri was among nine militants killed in the strike. He spoke on condition of anonymity in line with his agency’s policy. On Friday night, officials said several missiles hit a compound. The official Saturday said the men were meeting in an apple orchard near the house when the missiles hit.

Kashmiri’s name was on a list of militants that the United States and Pakistan recently agreed to jointly target, officials have said. The successful strike could help repair ties between the two countries that were badly damaged by the unilateral American raid, especially if Islamabad helped provide intelligence leading up to the attack.

Said to be blind in one eye and missing a finger, Kashmiri was one of the country’s most accomplished — and vicious — militants. He fought with jihadi fighters in Afghanistan and in Indian-held Kashmir in the 1990s and was so close to al-Qaida’s central command that he had been mentioned as a contender for replacing bin Laden, though many analysts thought the fact that he was not an Arab meant he was unlikely to get the post.

Indian officials have alleged he was involved in the 2008 Mumbai siege that killed more than 160 people. He has also been named a defendant in an American court over a planned attack on a Danish newspaper that published cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad in 2005.

In an ongoing terror trial in Chicago, testimony from an American-Pakistani militant has alleged that Kashmiri helped plan the Mumbai siege and wanted to attack U.S. defense contractor Lockheed Martin. Kashmiri had been angry over U.S. drone attacks inside Pakistan and wanted to target the company, David Coleman Headley testified.

Kashmiri has most recently been linked to last month’s 18-hour assault on a naval base in Karachi. He is also accused of masterminding several bloody raids on Pakistan police and intelligence buildings in 2009 and 2010, as well as a failed assassination attempt against then-President Pervez Musharraf in 2003.

The U.S Department of State says he organized a 2006 suicide bombing against the U.S. consulate in Karachi that killed four people, including an American diplomat.
American drones began firing missiles at al-Qaida and Taliban targets along the border in 2005, but the attacks picked up pace in 2008 and have risen in frequency ever since. Pakistani army officers and politicians publicly protest them, too weak to admit to working with the ever unpopular America in targeting fellow Pakistanis, but the country’s intelligence agencies have been known to occasionally provide targeting information.

Opposition to the strikes grew this year after a CIA contractor shot and killed two Pakistanis in the street, triggering ever more intense anti-American anger. After the bin Laden raid, which was seen by many here as an outrageous violation of the country’s sovereignty, the parliament issued a declaration calling for the attacks to end.

Pakistani leaders were not immediately available for comment on Friday’s attack. Kashmiri was accused of killing many Pakistanis, including police and army officers, so their public reaction may be muted.

The United States does not acknowledge the CIA-run program, though its officials have confirmed the death of high-value targets before, including the head of the Pakistani Taliban, Baitullah Mehsud, in 2009 — a strike welcomed by many Pakistan officials because he too was a sworn enemy of the country. Washington says the strikes are accurately killing militants and are disrupting plots against the West as well as planned attacks on U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

top

May 26, 2011

Bulletin of Islamic Attacks: May 2 – May 25, 2011

May 2, 2011
Pakistan
Hundreds of Muslims in Gujranwala attacked Christians’ homes, a school and a Presbyterian church building after learning that police had released two Christians accused of “blasphemy” – amid reports of another alleged desecration of the Quran.

May 3, 2011
Pakistan
In the aftermath of the April 30th Muslim attacks on a Presbyterian seminary after a false accusation that Christians desecrated the Koran, at least 3,000 Christians have fled for their lives.

May 6, 2011
Nigeria

Muslim attackers killed seventeen Christians and burned down several Christian homes in the village of Karum. Since the introduction of Sharia law in northern Nigeria in 1999, thousands of Christians have been killed by Muslims, and local officials have failed to bring the perpetrators to justice. Update HERE on the killing of Christian Nigerians.

May 7, 2011
Pakistan
Police have charged a mentally ill Christian with “injuring religious feelings” under Pakistan’s widely condemned blasphemy laws.

Syria
Christian communities across Syria have been attacked by anti-government protesters in recent weeks who are being led by hard-line Islamists. Also Christians have come under pressure to either join in protests demanding the resignation of President Bashir Assad, or else leave the country. Eye witnesses report seeing around 20 masked men on motorcycles open fire on a home in a Christian village outside Dara’a, in southern Syria. Another source said that churches had received threatening letters over Easter, telling them either to join the protests or leave. In Karak, Muslim Salafists forced villagers to join the protests and remove pictures of the president from their home. One man who refused was reportedly found hanged on his front porch the next morning.

Egypt
Update of this story: Thousands of Christians flocked to Saint Mark’s Cathedral in Cairo Friday in response to a protest organized by Salafi Muslims last week in front of the church. The conservative Islamist group had gathered its members to protest for the release of the wives of two Coptic priests, who some believe have been detained by the church after allegedly converting to Islam. There was a strong military presence at the cathedral Friday ahead of the protest. Mina Salib, one of the protesters, said that “Christians all over Egypt were deeply disturbed by last Friday’s protest and came to express their anger and assert their defense of the Cathedral against any attacks.” Mina added that people immediately responded to the call to protect the church as result of the attack directed against Pope Shenouda.

May 8, 2011
Egypt
Christians Copts in the area of Embaba were attacked Saturday evening by Muslim Salafis. The attacks lasted for 14 hours. The Muslims fired guns and rifles and hurled Molotov cocktails at Coptic churches, houses and businesses. 12 Copts were killed and 232 injured.

The church of Saint Mina was the first to be attacked. According to its pastor Fr. Abanoub the attack started at 5.30 PM on Saturday May 7, when church parishioners noticed a large number of Salafis, estimated at 3000 men, congregating near the church. Anticipating trouble, the army was called. The Salafis went to the church and asked to search it because they believed a Christian girl named who had converted to Islam, married a Salafi and wanted to revert back to Christianity, was hiding inside the church.

The second church attacked by Salafis was St. Mary and St Abanob, also in Embaba. Muslims prevented the fire brigade from reaching it. The third church attacked was St. Mary Church in Wehda Street in Embaba, the ground floor of which was completely torched. More HERE.

May 9, 2011
Malaysia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Islam is under siege in Malaysia because aggressive Christians are determined to convert Muslims who are nonchalant about their faith, several Islamist groups alleged. The Muslim Organisations in Defence of Islam accused Christians of strategising an elaborate plan to ensure that more and more Muslims leave the faith, which is illegal in Malaysia. The National Evangelical Christian Fellowship, together with partners Global Day of Prayer, Marketplace Penang and Penang Pastors Fellowship, said the claims against their community were lies.

May 12, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Once more, Pakistan’s ‘black law’ strikes again. A Muslim businessman has used the infamous blasphemy law against a rival and former associate, who happens to be Christian. More and more, the law is being used to persecute the country’s Christian minority or settle personal scores. The victim is Gulzar Masih, from Sialkot, who owns a bookstore. Yesterday, he and his son had to flee town, fearing reprisals by local Muslims who tried to set fire to his shop. Only the intervention of police stopped the attackers.

May 15, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Violence erupted in a Cairo neighborhood when pro-Coptic protesters clashed with unidentified men, leaving at least two people dead and 60 injured. The demonstrators initially staged a sit-in in front of the state TV building to demand greater rights for the religious minority. Problems between Egypt’s Muslim majority and its Coptic Christian minority have been on the rise in recent months, with a number of violent clashes reported between the two groups. More HERE.

May 16, 2011
Iraq (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
An Iraqi Chaldean Christian man was abducted, tortured and then beheaded by Al Qaeda jihadis. The victim was from Kirkuk, northern Iraq. He had been kidnapped three days ago and the family had received a ransom request. However, negotiations for his release did not work out and so he was brutally murdered. A pastor in Kirkuk said that kidnappers had pressured his employer to fire him because he was a Christian. More HERE.

Nigeria
Christians from a local Evangelical Church congregation in this Plateau state town have been displaced after Muslim extremists set their church building and some homes on fire last month. The Rev. Ishaku Danyok of the church said that the April 29 incident occurred after Muslims approached Christian music shop owner Gabriel Kiwase and told him that his music was disturbing them as they said their prayers.

The young Christian man “quietly switched off the music set, and then the Muslims left, only to return about 20 minutes later to burn down the music shop and then go on rampage, burning down houses belonging to some Christians in the town,” Danyok said. Update HERE.

May 17, 2011
EU (Hat tip to Persecutin.org)
A religious liberty campaigner has been heckled at an EU meeting for saying Christians should not be sent to prison for peacefully expressing their opinions. A room full of feminist and homosexual activists jeered at Dr Gudrun Kugler when she spoke about the intolerance faced by Christians in Europe. Some of the crowd said that Christians ought to be thrown in jail if they make a “negative comment” against a “minority group”.

May 18, 2011
Pakistan
Two more shocking cases have surfaced in Pakistan where Christians were badly treated by Muslims. The first concerned two Christian women working at a Lahore, Pakistan, hospital, who were allegedly “manhandled” by a leader at the Fatima Memorial Hospital on Tuesday, April 19, 2011. A source close to the situation said that Nusrat Bibi and Muneeran Bibi, who are both married female sanitary workers at the hospital were “brutally thrashed” and “unlawfully detained for several hours,” after being assaulted by a Muslim officer at the medical facility.

In another disturbing case, this one in a town located in the Punjab, the Christian Communication Network Pakistan (CCNP) told ANS that “a gang of Muslim men, on the behest of a former member of the Punjab Provincial Assembly, “invaded two Christian houses” in the city. Adnan Sher, an activist of CCNP, said that a Christian man, Sharif Gull, was abducted at gunpoint by the Muslim “hoodlums.”

Adnan Sher then alleged that the Muslim mob also attacked at the house of another Christian man, Idrees Asif. He added that the alleged culprits, armed with clubs, thrashed the men and women of Asif’s family and ripped off the cloths of the Christian women and made publicly nude.

Azerbaijan (Hat tip to Persecution.org)
Within the space of three days in mid-May, three Protestant communities in the town of Sumgait (Sumqayit) north of the Azerbaijani capital Baku were raided by police and officials of the State Committee for Work with Religious Organisations.

Syria
Syria’s minority Christians are watching the protests sweeping their country with trepidation, fearing their religious freedom could be threatened if President Bashar Assad’s autocratic but secular rule is overthrown. For many Syrian Christians, the flight of their brethren from sectarian conflict in neighboring Iraq and recent attacks on Christians in Egypt have highlighted the dangers they fear they will face if Assad succumbs to the wave of uprisings sweeping the Arab world.

Iraq
The body of Chaldean Christian Ashur Issa Yaqub was found on Monday (May 16) with marks of severe torture and mutilation. He had worked as a construction worker from the northeastern city of Kirkuk, and al Qaeda members had demanded $100,000 for his release, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP). Sources close to a Christian reportedly kidnapped, tortured and murdered by al Qaeda over the weekend said the kidnappers had pressured his employer to fire him because he was a Christian.

May 19, 2011
Pakistan
An influential Muslim family in a village near Sheikhupura is holding a 17-year-old Christian girl hostage because one of her brothers allegedly eloped with a woman from the Muslim family. The Muslim parents have threatened further retaliation against the Christian family if they do not produce their daughter, whom they have also threatened to publicly shoot dead as an “honor killing.”

An area clergyman identified only as Father Emmanuel called the situation “critical,” saying it has pitted the area’s 1,800 Muslim families against its 70-to-100 Christian families and could lead to violence. More HERE.

Indonesia
Islamic extremist groups disrupted two post-Easter services in Cirebon as police failed to stop the violence, this according to Hendardi, chairman of the Setara Institute, an NGO fighting for human rights and religious freedom in Indonesia. The activist slammed police for its “powerlessness” vis-à-vis “hostile” acts perpetrated by radical movements, which interrupted religious services.

Pakistan
The situation in Abbotabad is “critical” for religious minorities, who are “fasting and praying for peace in the region”, Fr Javed Akram Gill, a parish priest in the town where Osama Bin Laden was killed tells AsiaNews. The priest confirms that the death of the Al Qaeda “has raised fears within the Christian community” because “every time the Americans say or do something, Christians [in Pakistan] become the number one target.” Together with the Catholics, the faithful of other Christian denominations “prefer to stay inside” and their leaders refrain from making pastoral visits.

Egypt
On the morning of May 19 two Coptic priests went to St. Mary and St. Abraham Church and opened it together with some of the Coptic residents, but later in the day thousands of Muslims surrounded the church to protest its opening, hurled stones at the church building and the Copts, who responded by throwing stones. The army and the police stood there watching and did not intervene.

Unable to secure the church, the army and police closed it and arranged for a “reconciliation” meeting between the Coptic priest and the Salafi sheikhs. “The atmosphere of the meeting was belligerent,” said attorney Ashraf Edward, “and one of the sheikhs threatened us by saying that should the church be opened without their permission it would end up like the church in Soul which was demolished by Muslims.”

May 20, 2011
Pakistan
Two nurses at the Fatima Memorial Hospital, Lahore, were attacked and abducted for several hours by a fellow Muslim. The man also charged them with theft after stealing their mobile phone and a sum of money. In a second incident, a group of Muslims – at the behest of a former MP of the area – attacked the houses of two Christians, to force the owners to abandon them and transfer the land ownership over to him.

Turkey
Turkey’s Christians are under siege.

May 23, 2011
Germany
A Coptic Christian bishop warns the native Germans about the threat of Islamic dhimmitude and where it leads.

Pakistan (Hat tip to Persecution.org)
Pakistani Christians have expressed concerns about renewed kidnappings and abuse of women and girls by Muslims in a country still reeling from the recent assassination of a Christian government minister.

Among those targeted was Sehar Naz, a 24-year-old employee with Pakistan’s State Life Insurance Corporation in Punjab province, who was recovering of her injuries Monday, May 23, after she was allegedly kidnapped and raped by a Pakistan Army officer.

May 24, 2011
Sudan
Sudanese National Security Intelligence and Security Service agents have arrested a Christian woman in a Darfur camp for displaced people, accusing her of converting Muslims to Christianity, said sources who fear she is being tortured.

At the same time, in Khartoum a Christian mother of a 2-month-old baby is wounded and destitute because she and her husband left Islam for Christianity. More HERE.

Pakistan
Christians in Pakistan remained concerned Monday, May 23, over the situation of Pastor Paul Ashraf and his family after they reportedly narrowly survived a drive by shooting by suspected Islamic militants in Punjab province, seriously injuring their eldest son. “Pastor Ashraf was in a van with his wife, Rubina Ashraf, and eldest son Sarfraz Ashraf, on April 27 when two unidentified men on a motorbike opened fire” on their car, said the Centre for Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement. . . . Pastor Ashraf and Rubina were unharmed but Sarfraz” who drove the vechicle, “was shot in the side and face. The masked gunmen fled from the scene when they saw that Sarfraz had been seriously injured,” CLAAS explained.

May 25, 2011
Algeria
Algerian authorities have ordered the immediate closure of seven Protestant churches and demanded that the Algerian Protestant Church Association close all churches under their authority.

top

May 2, 2011

Osama Bin Laden Is Dead

By LAURA MECKLER and ADAM ENTOUS

WASHINGTON– Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is dead, President Obama said. The U.S. has his body in its possession, U.S. officials said late Sunday.
Mr. bin Laden was killed in a joint raid in Pakistan’s northwestern district of Abbottabad, some 40 miles from Islamabad, in a joint raid overnight Sunday, according to a senior Pakistani official.

The town also is home to a Pakistani military academy. Two American helicopters took part in the operation, the official said. One Pakistani helicopter involved in the raid crashed after it was hit by firing from militants.

President Barack Obama made the announcement late Sunday at the White House.

Timeline: Osama bin Laden

The development capped a manhunt of more than a decade for the architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that left 3,000 people dead and dramatically altered U.S. foreign policy and the nation’s sense of security.

Although Mr. bin Laden was not thought to be a critical operational leader of Al Qaeda, he had been the worldwide symbol of the terrorist network. Because he has been so difficult to find for more than a decade, the killing of Mr. bin Laden is a major victory for Mr. Obama, who demanded an aggressive expansion of Predator drone strikes in Pakistan.

In a recent book on Mr. bin Laden, Michael Scheuer, former chief of the Central Intelligence Agency’s bin Laden unit, wrote that the al Qaeda leader’s goal was to attack the West, and then to move on to Arab states and Israel, but that “he has given no indication that he expects to live long enough to finish the job.”

Instead, Mr. Scheuer wrote, Mr. bin Laden “has anticipated a war of attrition, one that might last decades,” so he began passing the torch to younger al Qaeda activists.

President Barack Obama will make the announcement late Sunday at the White House. The development capped a manhunt of more than a decade for the architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that left 3,000 people dead and dramatically altered U.S. foreign policy and the nation’s sense of security.

top

April 28, 2011

Panel Blacklists Egypt for Religious Oppression

The Washington Times reports that a congressional commission on religious freedom placed Egypt on its blacklist for the first time ever Thursday. The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom designated Egypt a “country of particular concern” (CPC) for the “systematic, ongoing and egregious violations of religious freedom” against Christians and minority Muslim sects. The panel also noted that President Obama has not heeded any of the panel’s recommendations in adding countries to the State Department’s list. “There is a problem with the failure to cite countries, and then a failure to take action when countries are cited,” commission Chairman Leonard Leo told The Washington Times. The panel reported on 28 countries, but Egypt was the only country moved from the watch list to the CPC designation. Egypt receives about $1.5 billion a year in U.S. aid.

top

March 2, 2011

Bulletin of Islamic Attacks: March 2 – March 22, 2011

March 2, 2011
Egypt
Christian Copts staged a massive demonstration on Monday, February 28, against the Governor of Minya Ahmed Dia-el-Din, calling for his resignation. The demonstration was prompted by the governor’s decision to demolish a church community center for the care of the handicapped.

Pakistan
Shahbaz Bhatti, minister for Minorities Affairs and a Christian was gunned down in the back seat of his car while leaving his mother’s home. He was the only Christian in the Pakistani cabinet and was murdered for criticizing the blasphemy law that prescribes the death penalty for those insulting Islam by leaving the religion. More HERE.

March 3, 2011
Pakistan
A Christian community is facing more wrongdoings by local landlords who grabbed Christian-owned fields and shops with the complicity of local police and officials. Also Christian symbols are desecrated but the blasphemy law is not applied in this case. Local authorities say accusations are all made up but fail to provide legal backing for grabbing Christian property. More HERE.

Ethiopia (Hat tip to AtlasShrugs)
Thousands of Muslims shouting “Allah Akbar” razed five churches and the homes of two evangelists. The Muslims started the attacks after falsely accusing the Christians of desecrating the Koran.

March 4, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The Islamic terrorists responsible for Christian Minister Bhatti’s murder–Tanseem Al Qaeda and Tehrik-e-Taliban threaten to send all of those like Shabaz Bhatti “one by one to hell.” A translation of the jihadi letter.

March 5, 2011
Turkey
Istanbul police’s anti-terror unit apprehended two suspects accused of plotting to assassinate a Christian priest in the city’s Fatih district.

March 7, 2011
Ethiopia (Hat tip to InfidelsAreCool)
A mob of Muslim extremists overpowered police to get to Christians handing out Bibles.

Egypt
Egyptian Christians protested on Monday after a church was set on fire on the outskirts of Cairo, the first sectarian flare-up since the January 25th revolution.

Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
Documents seized from State Security offices reveal the government’s involvement in the bombing of a Coptic Church on New Year’s Day in Alexandria that killed 21 people and injured 80.

March 9, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to InfidelsAreCool)
According to Father Abram Fahmy, pastor of St. Simon the Tanner Monastery in Mokatam Hills, on the outskirts of Cairo, Copts were killed and injured today in an attack by Muslims. It was reported the Egyptian army fired live ammunition on Copts. The attack has claimed until now the lives of 9 Copts and injured 150, 45 seriously. Muslims threw fire balls at the Monastery from the top of the hills. Coptic youth have arrested five of them, who are now being held within the Monastery grounds, waiting to be handed over to the authorities. Eight homes and 20 garbage recycling factories owned by Copts have been torched, as well as 30 garbage collection vehicles.

March 11, 2011
Malaysia

Christian leaders report that the Malaysian government is holding in detension 30,000 imported bibles written in the Malaysian language. Update HERE.

March 12, 2011
USA (Hat tip to GatesofVienna)
With the only Christian in Pakistan’s government murdered outside his mother’s home, Coptic Christian churches being burnt in Egypt, and Iraq’s Christian population reduced by about half of its 1.4 million total of 25 years ago, the future for many Christians in the Muslim world looks at best uncertain.

Dr. Walid Phares wants the Chicago area to be aware of the ongoing persecution and Saturday stressed the unknowns of the political situation in many countries in the region. He is particularly anxious about what type of government might replace any overturned regimes.

March 15, 2011
Pakistan
A Christian convicted for blasphemy was found dead in his jail cell. The official word is he died from a heart attack but many suspect that he might have fallen prey to active hate campaign going on in the country on this issue by extremist groups. More HERE.

Turkey
Discrimination, slander and attacks against churches were among the examples of ongoing harassment that the Turkish Association of Protestant Churches (TEK) recorded in 2010. In an eight-page report published earlier this year, TEK’s Committee for Religious Freedom and Legal Affairs outlined problems Protestants face. Turkish laws and “negative attitudes of civil servants” continue to make it nearly impossible for non-Muslims to establish places of worship, the committee reported.

Iran
Five Iranian house church Christians were behind bars Wednesday, March 15, after being sentenced to one year imprisonment on charges of “crimes against the Islamic order” and there were reports that Iranian authorities have been burning Bibles.

March 16, 2011
Pakistan (Hat tip to Persecution.org)
Pakisti Christians are converting to Islam due to threats and intimidation at the rate of 60 per month. In one madrassa in Lahore alone, 678 Christians embraced Islam in 2009. Last year they were almost 700. These are “dangerous days” minorities, activists say as the blasphemy law is used to force them to change religion.

March 17, 2011
Malaysia
A Christian lawyer in Malaysia has failed in her attempt to be allowed to practice in the Muslim Shariah courts.

March 18, 2011
Malaysia
The Christian community said today that it is appalled by what it says is the government’s desecration of 5,100 holy books shipped in from Indonesia that were detained and has flat out refused to collect the Port Klang shipment.

March 19, 2011
Iraq
Archbishop Bashar Warda made his alarming prediction at a press conference for the launch of the Aid to the Church in Need report on oppressed Christians abroad, Persecuted and Forgotten? Speaking alongside Archbishop Vincent Nichols, Archbishop Warda said that there were fewer than 200,000 Christians left in Iraq and “the time for waiting” was running out. He cited Mosul, one of the most dangerous cities in the world to be a Christian, where hundreds were driven out in October 2009, saying: “In 2003 there were 4,000 Chaldean families, 1,000 Christians from other churches, and 11 active Chaldean churches. Now six churches have been closed, and if it goes this way, it won’t be this long before certain areas of Iraq are evacuated.

Libya
Libya’s minority Christians were among those facing danger Saturday, March 19, as the international community began enforcing a no fly zone over the predominantly Sunni Muslim nation to halt attacks by forces loyal to embattled Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.

Heavily Islamic Libya currently ranks number 25 on the annual Open Doors’ World Watch List of 50 nations known for their reported persecution of Christians. North Korea tops the list at number 1. While there are no laws that explicitly provide for religious freedom, the country adheres to Islamic law and all citizens are Sunni Muslims ‘by definition’, according to rights activists. It is prohibited to evangelize to Muslims or distribute Arabic scriptures, according to Open Doors investigators.

March 20, 2011
Egypt
Many Egyptian Christians say they voted to reject proposed constitutional amendments because they fear hasty elections to follow may pave the way for Islamist groups to rise to power and further religious persecution. More HERE.

Ethopia (Hat tip to InfidelsAreCool)
Evangelical churches and homes have been burnt down by mobs of Muslims in the southwestern Jimma region of Ethiopia. The attacks have left at least one person dead and 7,000 displaced. “This is a strategically planned attack by an extremist Islamic group.

Nigeria (Hat tip to InfidelsAreCool)
Two men were killed in the Nigerian city of Jos when explosives they were carrying on a motorbike went off, preventing what local residents said was an attempted attack on a Christian community. More than 200 people have been killed since late last year in and around Jos, which lies in Nigeria’s “Middle Belt” between the mostly-Muslim north and predominantly Christian south. More HERE.

March 21, 2011
Indonesia
Some 100 members of a Christian congregation conducted services on the sidewalk in Bogor Sunday after police prevented them from using a contested church site that has been sealed off by city officials in defiance of a Supreme Court order.

Turkey
A Turkish court ordered five military officers and two civilians jailed Monday in a probe into the 2007 killing of three Christians, including a German national, over allegations that the attack was part of an alleged plot to topple the government. The Christians — a German and two Turks — were tied up and had their throats slit at a Bible-publishing house in the southern city of Malatya. More HERE.

March 22, 2011
Saudi Arabia
Two Indian Christians working in Saudi Arabia have been arrested in Riyadh, and sentenced to 45 days in prison. On March 11, 2011, Vasantha Sekhar and Nese Yohan were arrested and beaten. They were accused of proselytizing. ICC contacts in Saudi Arabia believe they were arrested to keep them from practicing Christianity privately in their home.
SPECIAL REPORT:
The World
Seventy five percent of religious persecution in the world is against Christians, claims a new report by a U.K. Catholic organization. Examining 33 countries, the British branch of Aid to the Church in Need reported that most of the persecution was occurring in the Middle East, Africa and Asia in its 2011 “Persecuted and Forgotten? A Report on Christians oppressed for their faith.”

Produced by Political Islam.com
Publisher: Bill Warner; Edited by Asma Marwan
Permalink

top

March 2, 2011

The religion of peace in action

February 11, 2011
Indonesia
Christian leaders faulted Indonesian authorities for security breaches that allowed Islamic extremist mobs this week to attack a defendant convicted of defaming Islam, the judge that sentenced him, two churches and a Christian school.
February 16, 2011
Indonesia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
In a fiery speech in court, a suspended Islamic Defenders Front leader on trial for inciting attacks against a Christian group in Bekasi continued to issue threats against church leaders on Monday. A former chapter leader of the hard-line group, FPI, warned the Batak Christian Protestant Church (HKBP) against holding prayers in Bekasi, a predominantly Muslim district in West Java.
Nigeria
Police blame Muslim radical sect for attempted church attack in troubled northern Nigeria.
Pakistan

A Pakistani Christian was killed by his employer says his parents.

February 18, 2011
Tunisia

A Polish priest was found dead with his throat cut at the School of Our Lady in Manouba where he worked.
Takjikistan

Authorities ban sales of a Jesus cartoon, claiming that the cartoon advocated a foreign religion.
Under a new version of the Law on Religion and Religious Associations adopted in Tajikistan in 2009, sharia is the law of the land and proselytising is against the law.
Turkey (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The Syro-Orthodox monastery, Mor Gabriel, which dates from 397 A.D., has lost its land to the Turkish government. The upkeep of the monks and the monastery is dependent on the income from this land.


February 19, 2011

Egypt (Hat tip to Mary Abdelmassih)
Muslims broke into the home of a Coptic family and abducted their 18-year-old daughter Nesma Sarwat. The home belongs to the building contractor who built the controversial St. Mary and St. Michael church in Talbiya, within the Omraniya neighborhood of Giza. The abductors wrote messages on the home’s wall, the messages said “Islam is the solution” and “The Church has to be demolished.”

February 22, 2011
Sudan
A Christian widow in north Sudan is agonizing over the kidnapping of her daughter eight months ago by suspected Islamic extremists in Khartoum.

February 23, 2011
Egypt (Hat tip to Mary Abdelmassih)
Egyptian armed forces demolished fences surrounding ancient Coptic monasteries, leaving them vulnerable to attacks by armed Arabs, robbers and escaped prisoners, who have seized the opportunity of the state of diminished protection by the authorities in Egypt to carry out assaults and thefts. See update for February 24, 2011

Egypt

Thousands of Coptic Christians demonstrated in the city of Assiut in Upper Egypt for the second day after a priest was found stabbed to death inside his home. Protesters demanded the arrest of the murderers chanting, ‘With our souls and blood we sacrifice our lives to the cross.” More HERE.


February 24, 2011

Indonesia (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The head of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) was convicted in an attack on a priest and a Christian elder last September. The cleric was sentenced to five-and-a-half months in prison for urging protesters to disrupt the church’s worship activities. Two hundred radical Muslims shouted “Allahu Akbar” (God is Greater) and “Free Murhali” outside the court as 350 police officers guarded the trial.

India
Suspected Islamic militants set fire on Feb. 19 to the School of the Convent of St. Luke, a Protestant educational institution that began its activities about 17 years ago in Srinagar, Kashmir.

Somalia
A Christian convert from Islam was killed by members of the terrorist group Al-Shabbab. They accused Roble of spying and ‘fitna,’ or causing religious discord among Muslims.

Afghanistan
Two Afghan Christians who were arrested for their conversion to Christianity remain behind bars despite diplomatic efforts by the United States to secure their release. In a letter smuggled out of their prison in Mazar-e-Sharif, one Christian wrote that he may receive the death penalty for apostasy.

Egypt
For the second time in as many days, Egyptian armed force stormed the 5th century old St. Bishoy monastery in Wadi el-Natroun. Live ammunition was fired, wounding two monks and six Coptic monastery workers. Several sources confirmed the army’s use of RPG ammunition. Four people have been arrested including three monks and a Coptic lawyer who was at the monastery investigating yesterday’s army attack. Video HERE.


February 25, 2011

Egypt (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The deputy to Osama bin Laden issued al-Qaida’s second message since the Egyptian uprising, accusing the nation’s Christian leadership of inciting interfaith tensions and denying that the terror network was behind last month’s bombing of a Coptic church in Alexandria that killed 21 and sparked protests.

February 27, 2011
Gaza
A prominent Christian surgeon in the Gaza Strip said assailants threw a bomb at his vehicle and sent him threatening messages. He said Sunday that after the blast that he received text messages to halt evangelical work or face harsh punishment. Ayyad says he does not preach his faith.

February 28, 2011
Nigeria (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
A Christian mother and her four children were killed in a jihad attack by Muslims.

Special Report from Iraq
Iraq (Hat tip to JihadWatch)
The secular western world is incapable of fully understanding the threat of a “reawakening of Islam” in the Middle East, according to an Iraqi bishop beset by radical movements in his own archdiocese.
Produced by Political Islam.com
Publisher: Bill Warner; Edited by Asma Marwan

top

January 18, 2011

Christian ‘Genocide’ In The Mideast

January 18, 2011 – 10:08 AM | by: Greg Burke

 

http://liveshots.blogs.foxnews.com/2011/01/18/christian-genocide-in-the-mideast/?test=latestnews

Dec. 31, 2010: Coffins of slain Christians killed in the attack at St. George Chaldean Church in Baghdad, Iraq. (AP)

Christians have been getting pushed out of the Middle East for some time now, but the attacks on them have recently become particularly ferocious.
It’s enough to look at the bombing at a Coptic church in Alexandria, Egypt, on New Year’s Day that left 23 dead, or the brutal siege on St. George Chaldean Church, a Catholic church in Baghdad that killed more than 50.
“If you look at the technical definition of what genocide is, it is the attempt to annihilate a particular group because of their ethnicity or their religion,” says David Alton a Catholic member of Britain’s House of Lords. “And certainly that is what is happening to many of the ancient churches of the Middle East.”
Lord Alton, a prominent campaigner for religious freedom, told Fox News in an interview that radical Muslims target Christians as a way of hitting the West.
“They use Iraq as a staging post for that, and as a pretext for attacking groups they say are U.S. allies, and so Christians are in the firing line for that reason,” Alton notes. “It is absurd in many respects, but it is a very convenient piece of shorthand for those who carry out the attacks.”
John Pontifex of Aid to the Chuch in Need points out that the rise of radical Islam is putting extreme pressure on other religious groups, but especially Christians.
As the number of Christians falls drastically in the Middle East, Pontifex says, the radicals rejoice.
“Extremist groups have made it clear that because of this change in numbers, they are getting close to achieving their objective, which is the wipeout of Christianity in some of its oldest heartlands.”
While Christians are hardest hit in the Mideast, that’s not the only region they’re feeling pressure, whether it be slighter forms of discrimination, or outright violence.
Pontifex estimates that there are 30 or more countries where Christians suffer “very severely,” and that “in certain of those countries, that persecution is very endemic and very persistent and has as its objective an end to the Christian presence.”
Pope Benedict’s annual speech to diplomats last week focused on religious freedom as a fundamental human right, and mentioned the attacks in Iraq and Egypt.
Benedict also called for Pakistan to overturn its blasphemy law, saying it serves as a “pretext for acts of injustice and violence against religious minorities.”
Egypt responded by recalling Aly Mekhemar Hamada, its ambassador to the Holy See to Cairo for consultations. Before leaving, Hamada gave an interview in which she said her government did not agree that Christians suffered discrimination in Egypt.
And in Pakistan, the response on the street was a not a friendly one, as protesters burned the Pope in effigy.

top

January 14, 2011

“Shoe Bomber” Sentence

Remember the guy who got on a plane with a bomb built into his shoe and tried to light it?

Everyone should hear what the judge had to say.

Ruling by Judge William Young , US District Court.

Prior to sentencing, the Judge asked the defendant if he had anything to say. His response: After admitting his guilt to the court for the record, Reid also admitted his ‘allegiance to Osama bin Laden, to Islam, and to the religion of Al lah,’ defiantly stating, ‘I think I will not apologize for my actions,’ and told the court ‘I am at war with your country.’

Judge Young then delivered the statement quoted below:

January 30, 2009, United States vs. Reid .

Judge Young : ‘ Mr. Richard C. Reid , hearken now to the sentence the Court imposes upon you.

On counts 1, 5 and 6 the Court sentences you to life in prison in the custody of the United States Attorney General. On counts 2, 3, 4and 7, the Court sentences you to 20 years in prison on each count, the sentence on each count to run consecutively. (That’s 80 years.)

On count 8 the Court sentences you to the mandatory 30 years again, to be served consecutively to the 80 years just imposed.. The Court imposes upon you for each of the eight counts a fine of $250,000 that’s an aggregate fine of $2 million.. The Court accepts the government’s recommendation with respect to restitution and orders restitution in the amount of $298.17 to Andre Bousquet and $5,784 to American Airlines.

The Court imposes upon you an $800 special assessment. The Court imposes upon you five years supervised release simply because the law requires it. But the life sentences are real life sentences so I need go no further.

This is the sentence that is provided for by our statutes. It is a fair and just sentence. It is a righteous sentence..

Now, let me explain this to you. We are not afraid of you or any of your terrorist co-conspirators, Mr. Reid . We are Americans. We have been through the fire before. There is too much war talk here and I say that to everyone with the utmost respect. Here in this court, we deal with individuals as individuals and care for individuals as individuals. As human beings, we reach out for justice.

You are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist.. You are not a soldier in any war. You are a terrorist. To give you that reference, to call you a soldier, gives you far too much stature.. Whether the officers of government do it or your attorney does it, or if you think you are a soldier, you are not—– you are a terrorist. And we do not negotiate with terrorists. We do not meet with terrorists. We do not sign documents with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice.

So war talk is way out of line in this court. You are a big fellow. But you are not that big. You’re no warrior. I’ve known warriors. You are a terrorist. A species of criminal that is guilty of multiple attempted murders. In a very real sense, State Trooper Santiago had it right when you first were taken off that plane and into custody and you wondered where the press and the TV crews were, and he said: ‘You’re no big deal.’

You are no big deal.

What your able counsel and what the equally able United States attorneys have grappled with and what I have as honestly as I know how tried to grapple with, is why you did something so horrific. What was it that led you here to this courtroom today?

I have listened respectfully to what you have to say. And I ask you to search your heart and ask yourself what sort of unfathomable hate led you to do what you are guilty and admit you are guilty of doing? And, I have an answer for you. It may not satisfy you, but as I search this entire record, it comes as close to understanding as I know.

It seems to me you hate the one thing that to us is most precious. You hate our freedom. Our individual freedom. Our individual freedom to live as we choose, to come and go as we choose, to believe or not believe as we individually choose. Here, in this society, the very wind carries freedom. It carries it everywhere from sea to shining sea. It is because we prize individual freedom so much that you are here in this beautiful courtroom, so that everyone can see, truly see, that justice is administered fairly, individually, and discretely. It is for freedom’s sake that your lawyers are striving so vigorously on your behalf, have filed appeals, will go on in their representation of you before other judges.

We Americans are all about freedom. Because we all know that the way we treat you, Mr. Reid , is the measure of our own liberties. Make no mistake though. It is yet true that we will bear any burden; pay any price, to preserve our freedoms. Look around this courtroom. Mark it well. The world is not going to long remember what you or I say here. The day after tomorrow, it will be forgotten, but this, however, will long endure.

Here in this courtroom and courtrooms all across America , the American people will gather to see that justice, individual justice, justice, not war, individual justice is in fact being done. The very President of the United States through his officers will have to come into courtrooms and lay out evidence on which specific matters can be judged and juries of citizens will gather to sit and judge that evidence democratically, to mold and shape and refine our sense of justice..

See that flag, Mr. Reid ? That’s the flag of the United States of America . That flag will fly there long after this is all forgotten. That flag stands for freedom. And it always will.

Mr. Custody Officer. Stand him down.

So, how much of this Judge’s comments did we hear on our TV sets? We need more judges like Judge Young. Pass this around. Everyone should and needs to hear what this fine judge had to say. Powerful words that strike home.

top

January 5, 2011

Pakistani men grooming British girls for sex

50 out of 53 pimps convicted in last 10 years in UK are Muslims (95%)

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/uk/Pakistani-men-grooming-British-girls-for-sex/articleshow/7223824.cms

IANS, Jan 5, 2011, 07.45pm IST

LONDON: Pakistani-origin men in Britain are grooming white girls aged between 11 and 16 for sex with Asian men, a media report said Wednesday.

Police and social services were silent on the exploitation because of fear that it would be termed a racial issue, The Daily Mail reported.

Researchers from University College London’s Jill Dando Institute of Security and Crime Science said the victims were “typically white girls” while “most central offenders are Pakistani”.

The offenders were not viewed as paedophiles but had picked the girls because of their “malleability”.

The report, however, concluded that “race is a delicate issue” that should be handled sensitively “but not brushed under the carpet”.

It said the grooming usually began with older groups of men befriending girls aged 11 to 16 they meet on the street.

The victim was initially treated as a girlfriend and showered with gifts and attention.

But the relationship quickly becomes more “sinister” as the abuser plies the child with drinks and drugs before effectively pimping her out to friends and associates.

The worst cases involve girls being moved around the country to be repeatedly abused.

However, charities working with police to help victims of sexual abuse have publicly denied there was a link between ethnicity and the grooming.

A police officer at West Mercia called for an end to the “damaging taboo” connecting grooming with race.

“These girls are being passed around and used as meat. To stop this type of crime, you need to start everyone talking about it but everyone’s been too scared to address the ethnicity factor,” Chief Inspector Alan Edwards said.

“No one wants to stand up and say that Pakistani guys in some parts of the country are recruiting young white girls and passing them around their relatives for sex, but we need to stop being worried about the racial complication,” he said.

In 17 court cases since 1997 where men were prosecuted, 53 of the 56 people found guilty were Asian, 50 of them Muslim, while just three were white, according to The Times.

Five Asian men were jailed in November 2010 for 32 years for sexual offences against girls aged between 12 and 16 in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.

Judge Peter Kelson said the men were “sexual predators”.

Mohammed Shafiq, director of Lancashire-based Ramadhan Foundation, a charity working for harmony, said: “I think the police are overcautious because they are afraid of being branded racist.

top

January 1, 2011

THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary

_________________________________________

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                        January 1, 2011

Statement by the President on the terrorist attacks in Egypt and Nigeria
I strongly condemn the separate and outrageous terrorist bombing attacks in Egypt and Nigeria. The attack on a church in Alexandria, Egypt caused 21 reported deaths and dozens of injured from both the Christian and Muslim communities.  The perpetrators of this attack were clearly targeting Christian worshipers, and have no respect for human life and dignity. They must be brought to justice for this barbaric and heinous act.  We are continuing to gather information regarding this terrible event, and are prepared to offer any necessary assistance to the Government of Egypt in responding to it.

The attack near an army barracks in Abuja also reportedly killed more than 20 people and wounded many more. Killing innocent civilians who were simply gathering like so many people around the world to celebrate the beginning of a New Year further demonstrates the bankrupt vision of those who carry out these attacks, and we are similarly prepared to offer assistance to the Government of Nigeria as it works to bring the perpetrators to justice.

The United States extends its deepest condolences to the families of those killed and to the wounded in both of these attacks, and we stand with the Nigerian and Egyptian people at this difficult time.