Let illegals work! say small businesses

Unizo, the Flemish small business association, has called for workers across the European Union to be given access to jobs in the Belgian labor market. Citing a shortage of workers, the association also states that the number of job vacancies in Flanders is twice the number of job seekers. Unizo favors giving illegal immigrants who have integrated into Belgian society the right to legally work in the country.

Norway: Ansar al Islam leader threatens Norway

The former head of Ansar al Islam allegedly made threats against Norway days after a court upheld a state expulsion order saying he was a security threat. Mullah Krekar, the former head of the terrorist group Ansar al Islam, said Norwegian authorities wouldn’t carry out the deportation because it would invoke a reaction from Islamic supporters, Aftenpost said Thursday.

Dutch lawmaker planning film criticizing the Quran

The HAGUE — A Dutch conservative lawmaker said Wednesday he is making a film to highlight what he describes as “fascist” passages in the Quran, his latest high profile criticism of Islam. The interior and justice ministers said they were concerned, but believed they had no authority to prevent the lawmaker, Geert Wilders, from screening his film.

Headscarf ban for employees in Ghent

Ghent, Belgium’s third largest city, has banned employees from wearing Muslims headscarves and other religious or political symbols. The ban was proposed by the Flemish liberal party, and approved by the city council. All city personnel such as librarians, child care workers, and such will not be allowed to wear such garments if they come into contact with the public.

The City of Alcorcón offers Arabic language courses

The city of Alcorc_n plans to offer Arabic as part of its _Libraries Open’ program seeking to promote multiculturalism and expose its citizens to the social realities of other cultures. Arabic will be taught in courses divided into three categories – basic, intermediate, and advanced. The courses will be taught in the library of Jose Iron Alcorc_n.

Veiled Muslim women workers approved to work for company in Murcia

Agrolimentaria, an agricultural company with about 300 employees in the Murcian neighborhood of Torre Pacheco, must be allowed to employ veiled Muslim women as part of their workforce. The company has about 300 employees involved in the packaging of vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, and lettuce – half of these employees are Arab women. The company will allow women to use their own veils, but may also supply their own during working hours. Many companies like Agrolimentaria condemn the veiling of Muslim women, citing reasons related to hygiene.

Guard Accused of Hiding Ties to Imam

A former security guard at Andrews Air Force Base is on trial for providing inaccurate information on his job application. Federal prosecutors said the Darrick Michael Jackson, failed to list Abdul-Jalil Mohammad as an alias when applying for a job at the suburban Washington base in an effort to conceal his ties to a controversial Washington imam. Stephen Manning reports.

Teacher in jail in Sudan for teddy bear named Muhammad

A British teacher faces a jail sentence in Sudan for insulting Islam by letting her class of seven-year-olds name a teddy bear Muhammad as part of a school project. Gillian Gibbons, 54, from Liverpool, has been accused of blasphemy – an offence punishable by 40 lashes under Sharia – and could be imprisoned for up to six months. Rob Crilly in Khartoum and Lucy Bannerman report.

Three Moroccans try to reach Spain on surfboard

Three would-be immigrants from Morocco tried to paddle their way through rough waters across the Strait of Gibraltar on a surfboard before they were picked up by a ferry that was passing by. Spotted about 20 minutes out of the Moroccan port of Tangiers, the three had told the ferry crew that they left Rabat the previous night to try and reach Spain.