Sociologist Smaïn Laacher claims that “Neither Whores Nor Submissives” is a Victim of its Own Success

In her new book Femmes invisibles, leurs mots contre la violence (Invisible Women, Their Words Against Violence, Calmann-Lévy 2008) sociologist Smaïn Laacher (CNRS – EHESS) claims that the community association Neither Whores Nor SUbmissives (Ni Putes Ni Soumises) has had problems representing Muslim girls in the suburbs of France because it was so popular amongst young women in its beginnings and the expectations were too high. The organization never had the infrastructure to be able to properly respond to the demand. In addition, its press releases and communication were direct and addressed major issues like secularism, Islam, immigration and the Israeli-Palestian conflict. According to Laacher, the media therefore exaggerated the importance and power of the organization, so that many of its members were disappointed by its actual power.

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French Magazine Express International Banned in North Africa – Some Claim it Offends Islam

This week’s issue of L’Express International, a French newsmagazine, has been banned in Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco, on the grounds that its cover story “The Jesus-Muhammad Shock” is offensive to Islam. The story title is the same as a book covered in the story. The newsweekly’s staff claim that they attempted to portray Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, with adherence to Islamic norms by covering his face with a white veil.

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International Herald Tribune

International Herald Tribune

L’Express

Macleans Magazine

Associated Press

Netherlands’ Group Launches Shelters For Ex-Muslims

‘Open Doors,’ a major Netherlands-based Christian group, has launched a global initiative to set up shelters for ex-Muslims who have converted to Christianity. Founder of the organization Anne van der Bikl said that the shelters will be safe places where former Muslims can find safety and spiritual support. He added that ‘Open Doors’ will also provide medical aid and job support for those who have suffered as a direct result of their conversion.

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French Magazine Express International Banned in North Africa – Some Claim it Offends Islam

This week’s issue of L’Express International, a French newsmagazine, has been banned in Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco, on the grounds that its cover story “The Jesus-Muhammad Shock” is offensive to Islam. The story title is the same as a book covered in the story. The newsweekly’s staff claim that they attempted to portray Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, with adherence to Islamic norms by covering his face with a white veil.

See full-text articles:

International Herald Tribune

L’Express

Macleans Magazine

Associated Press

The Muslim Girl

A magazine for American Muslim teenage girls, The Muslim Girl features include “Muslim Girl of the Month,” fashion tips such as “cool hijabs” and “long dresses for the long days of the summer,” expert advise on issues such as health, relationships, and ethics, profiles of young female athletes, and celebrity interviews. Readers can view partial articles online or subscribe by mail.

On ballots this November: More Muslim American women

While many things have changed for Muslim Americans since the September 11th terrorist attacks, one remarkable and positive change is currently unfolding – more Muslims, particularly Muslim women, are running for political office.

Agha Saeed, founder of the American Muslim Alliance, has tracked Muslim candidates for over a decade. Before September 11th, less than 5 percent of the candidates were women, and now one in three Muslim candidates is a woman.

On local levels, there is Jamilah Nasheed, a female Missouri Democratic state representative vying for re-election. Ferial Masry is facing a tough state assembly race in a heavily conservative district near Los Angeles.

While dozens of Muslim Americans hold seats on city councils and are busy in Washington, only two serve in Congress – Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Andre Carson of Indiana. “9/11 had a big impact. We kind of came to the conclusion that sitting on the sidelines… was not going to be a successful strategy, and that people needed to get involved,” said Ellison.

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Muslim teen ‘brainwashing’ by extremists targeted

Muslim teenagers in danger of being “brainwashed” by extremists preaching hatred of western society are being targeted by an anti-racism group. It is just one of the new initiatives from Race Equality First designed to promote tolerance across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan.

Director Mohammed Tufail said: “There are young people in the UK who are trying to brainwash other young people into hatred. We want to develop a project to work with young people to make them realise that by falling into the hands of extremists, they are not only damaging themselves, they are also going against their religion. Islam is a great religion to talk about tolerance. These people are in danger of being excluded by these idiots who take the Koran out of context. We can beat these extremists by the force of our argument, which is that we see our diverse society as a great thing.”

Mr. Tufail, who took control of the predominantly voluntary organisation just a few months ago, said Cardiff is a successful, diverse city, but must break down the final barriers of ignorance if it is to truly become a world-class city. He said Cardiff will thrive if the remaining negative attitudes are challenged and corrected. He has put in place a new casework team to investigate allegations of discrimination from anyone within one of Cardiff and the Vale’s 150 black and minority ethnic communities.

Mr. Tufail said he plans to work as closely as possible with partners such as local authorities, the police and the business community to ensure racism in all its forms is stamped out.

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English law reigns supreme over sharia, says Straw

The Lord Chancellor confirms that sharia ‘courts’ will remain subservient to common law. There is ‘no room for parallel legal systems’ and the law has not changed, he says: Earlier this week, I said here that the Lord Chancellor should deliver a major speech addressing people’s fears about Islamic law in Britain. Never let it be thought that this writer is without influence in high places. Yesterday Jack Straw did just that, addressing the Islamic Finance and Trade Conference in London. This, in full, is what he said on the subject of sharia: “As a Government, it has always been our aim to extend opportunity and prosperity to all – to all parts of the country and to all different communities. This is not about preferential treatment. It is about fairness. This is not about political correctness. It is about respect. “Whether it is employers with prayer rooms; faith schools; kosher and halal food in work places and public services like hospitals; laws to tackle hate crimes; or the provision of financial products that fit with religious beliefs – we have worked to provide a space in which the rights and diversity of people of all faiths are protected, whilst at the same time setting a clear framework of acceptable behaviour for all citizens. “This is the thinking which underpins our approach to sharia law. Of course those who live in this country will always be governed by English law and will be subject to the jurisdiction of English courts. “But there has been much speculation over sharia law in recent weeks, so it may be worth me setting out the true position. “Many dreadful things have been done in the name of mainstream religions. Barbaric practices such as stoning have been – quite wrongly – justified by reference to Islam, for instance. The same was true in earlier periods, for instance when the state apparatus was used to run Inquisitions in countries like Spain. Joshua Rozenberg reports.

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Egypt to deport German family for ‘Islamic extremism’

Cairo – Egypt imprisoned and said it would deport a German family that tore up its German identification papers upon arrival, fearing the documents would connect them to an “infidel state.”Egypt accused the family of Islamic extremism and imprisoned the family, which consisted of a man, his wife, his two sisters and his mother. They were being prepared for deportation, Egyptian Independent al-Badeel newspaper reported. According to media reports, the family does not want to return to Germany. The German embassy in Cairo is cooperating with Egyptian officials to deport the family, the paper said. However, it has declined to give them new identification documents for fear they would also be destroyed. It must also be determined which country will pay for the flight.

Eyewitnesses said the female members of the family wore garb that only allowed their eyes to be seen. None of the family is fluent in Arabic, which made communication with police authorities difficult. After their arrest, they debated whether a true Muslim would allow himself to be photographed for a passport.

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Muslim community finds message on church marquee offensive

A sign posted outside a church in Jacksonville, Florida that reads “God Loves You, Allah Hates” has caused offense against local Muslims. A reporter from Channel 4 News called the pastor of the First Conservative Baptist Church to get an explanation, but was hung up on. One Muslim woman who asked not to be identified said: “What have I done? What have I done to deserve that kind of hatred in my neighborhood? The thing that bothers me so much is that this is in my neighborhood, where I live with my children. To know that people that feel this way are in my neighborhood is scary.”

CAIR has called the church’s sign offensive and wrong, citing that concerning the matter of words – God and Allah – the two quintessentially mean the same thing.

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