33 year old lives in a basement, neglected because he is a non-Muslim

March 28, 2014

 

“I live in a basement because I am not a good Muslim,” Miadi is 33 years old and since November has lived in a basement.

Miadi travelled to Italy in search of fortune, but for Miadi, a 33 year old Algerian, fate turned its back on him shortly after his arrival. Suffice it to say that the young man has been forced to live in a small cellar, near the outskirts of Milan. To be precise, since last November, when the young man was literally kicked out of an apartment in the Aurora area where he lived with some friends, the basis of the argument was purely religious.

Miadi, in fact, is not a Muslim and does not follow the Islamic faith, a major issue for the people with whom he lived for a short time. “One day they caught me eating ham and I was forced to pack up” says the 33-year old. “For a few days I slept on the side of a road, then I met a friend who gave me a hand. I found this cellar where at least I can rest. Definitely better than being under a bridge in the cold.”

But even in a basement hygienic conditions are not exactly the best. In the small space Miadi has placed a mattress and some blankets. “I manage as I can,” says the Algerian. To complicate the situation the young man also does not have a job and has no family in the area to garner support. “I worked for a short time in the market. But with the little money I made I could barely eat.”

 

Torino Today: http://www.torinotoday.it/cronaca/miadi-casa-cantina-islam-barriera-milano.html

 

No Mosque yet: A Divided Community is the Problem

March 25, 2014

 

It is an uphill struggle for the Muslim community to build a place of worship in Milan, many hoped it would ready for Expo 2015, instead the building has been delayed. According to Paolo Branca, advocate and Associate Professor at the Catholic University of Milan, the real problem, rather than the opposition of some in the Conservative Party, is the divisions within the Muslim community, split into two major areas of thought: Caim (Coordination of Islamic associations in Milan) which has never made ​​a secret of being close to the Muslim Brotherhood and Coreis (Islamic Religious Community), which is more secular and supported by the Diocese. “Many have advanced their concerns, not the mosque, but on its future management in the case that it incorporates close ties to the Brotherhood” explains Branca “ This could complicate the creation of a place open to all Muslims as well as Milanese.”

 

Il Fatto Quotidiano: http://tv.ilfattoquotidiano.it/2014/03/25/moschea-di-milano-branca-i-problemi-sono-le-divisioni-nella-comunita-islamica/271559/

 

The uncontrolled return of Jihadists from Syria is alarming the Spanish police

March 22, 2014

 

The Spanish intelligence services admitted for the first time that there are Jihadists, belonging to the Al-Qaeda cells returning from Syria to Spain. These are young people willing to do the jihad in Spain after being trained in weapons and explosives. ” We do not know how many have gone and how many of those who have returned. That is the danger, we do not know what we should know. Nobody is able to give reliable figures,”acknowledges a member of the General Information Office.

” The potential danger is brutal. They are people who have already killed. (…)Returnees are the biggest security problem we have, “said a Spanish police official.

So far the only known case of a returned Jihadist is of Abdeluahid Sadik Mohamed, born in Ceuta, age 28, married with two children aged 5 and 6 years old. He participated in the assault on the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad ( Iraq ) to free 500 jihadist prisoners and also participated in the heavy fighting in Syria before he was stopped at the airport of Malaga, in January 2014.

 

El País: http://politica.elpais.com/politica/2014/03/22/actualidad/1395507832_135409.html

Sharia law for wills

March 23, 2014

 

The Law Society is to issue a practice note to solicitors who may be interested in drafting “Sharia-compliant” wills for their Muslim clients. Some have argued that by issuing the note the law society has opened the doors on the technical issues surrounding gender discrimination inherent in Sharia not only regarding the inheritance provisions, but more importantly endorsing a different set of laws for different groups of people. The idea of equality before the law is being threatened.

In Britain, unless you draw up a will, your estate on death will be distributed according to the rules of intestacy. However, although people can do whatever they want with their assets and a lawyer must follow the client’s instructions; it has been argued that this guidance legitimises discrimination towards women, “illegitimate” and adopted children, and non-Muslim partners or offspring who may be the result of inter-marriage.

The key paragraph states: “The male heirs in most cases receive double the amount inherited by a female heir of the same class. Non-Muslims may not inherit at all, and only Muslim marriages are recognised. Similarly, a divorced spouse is no longer a Sharia heir, as the entitlement depends on a valid Muslim marriage existing at the date of death.”

It adds: “This means you should amend or delete some standard will clauses. For example, you should consider excluding the provisions of s33 of the Wills Act 1837, because these operate to pass a gift to the children of a deceased ‘descendant’. Under Sharia rules, the children of a deceased heir have no entitlement, although they can benefit from the freely disposable third [the third of an estate that can be given to non-heirs or charities].

“Similarly, you should amend clauses which define the term ‘children’ or ‘issue’ to exclude those who are illegitimate or adopted.” It has been argued that the ruling advises solicitors on how to discriminate and avoid equality legislation. But a person has always been able to distribute their assets in any way they choose, and a Muslim may legally have done so according to Sharia principles without letting the lawyer know the basis of the instructions. But the question now is that a solicitor could offer this service and develop a product specifically designed for a Muslim client who wants to distribute their assets according to their religious requirement, which could be considered socially unacceptable. Suppose a client instructed that their assets should not go to a relative because they happened to be of a different race or religion. Would that be acceptable? If one were to accept that people have the right to act in a discriminatory fashion with their assets if they choose to, this guidance encourages solicitors to adopt a separate approach to clients who are deemed “different” – in this case, clients who are Muslim. The guidance also states that “there are specific differences between Sunni and Shia rules on succession.”

The code of conduct for solicitors which all solicitors must abide by says: “As a matter of general law, you must comply with requirements set out in legislation – including the Equality Act 2010 – as well as the conduct duties contained in this chapter.”

 

The Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10717676/Sharia-law-for-wills-and-then-what.html

The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/03/23/sharia-law-enshrined-in-uk-legal-system_n_5016396.html

Government intervenes at school ‘taken over’ by Muslim radicals

March 22, 2014

 

The Birmingham school at the centre of an alleged campaign of “Islamisation” by Muslim radicals is to be placed in “special measures” by the Government’s education watchdog in a move that could see its head teacher and governors removed. Park View, previously rated “outstanding” by Ofsted, will be downgraded to “inadequate”, the lowest possible score, in the category of leadership and management, senior education sources said. This enables Ofsted to place the school in special measures, allowing the watchdog, if it wishes, to remove the school’s entire leadership.

The move, described as “seismic” by senior educational sources, follows a highly unusual two Ofsted inspections in the past three weeks at the school, the alleged victim of a campaign by Islamists called a “Trojan Horse” to remove secular head teachers and install Islamic practices in Birmingham state schools. The disclosure comes as parents and school governors and staff describe in detail how the campaign has destabilised and undermined successful schools.

At the supposedly non-religious primary school, Oldknow, anti-Christian chanting has been reportedly led by one of their teachers at assembly, as well as conducting weekly Friday prayers, school trips to Mecca subsidised from public funds and Oldknow like Nansen Primary has the requirement that all pupils learn Arabic (this is almost unheard of at primary level). Oldknow’s highly successful non-Muslim head teacher has been driven from her post for resisting the “Islamising agenda”. At another successful primary school, Springfield, the head teacher received death threats, had his car tyres slashed and is under “non-stop attack” by radical governors.

Several sources said their schools had repeatedly appealed to Birmingham city council and the education inspectorate Ofsted for help, but were ignored.

According to the Telegraph one of the alleged leaders of the Trojan Horse plot is Tahir Alam, an Ofsted inspector and a “specialist in school governance” at Birmingham city council. Mr Alam says the plot is a fabrication and denies any involvement. Officials from the Department for Education were sent to three of the schools allegedly targeted: Park View, Golden Hillock and Nansen Primary. All three state schools are run by Park View Education Trust, whose chairman is Mr Alam. The deputy head of Nansen Razwan Faraz is the brother of a convicted terrorist and is the administrator of an organisation called “Educational Activists” dedicated to pursuing what has been called an “Islamising agenda” in Birmingham schools.

The Department of Education confirmed that its officials were sent into Park View as part of an “ongoing investigation” into “serious allegations”. Officials are also expected to carry out a snap inspection at Nansen and Golden Hillock.

Hard-line teachers were recruited with some of the teachers telling pupils that music was sinful and as a consequence the children started to refuse to take the music lesson even though it is compulsory on the National Curriculum.

 

The Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10716855/Government-intervenes-at-school-taken-over-by-Muslim-radicals.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-birmingham-26482599

The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/mar/07/alleged-plot-birmingham-schools-islamic-principles

Mosque leader compares being gay to paedophilia and murder

March 20, 2014

 

The chairman of a mosque at the centre of a BBC censorship row over the issue of being both Muslim and gay has compared homosexuality to being “a compulsive murderer, gambler, or paedophile”.

Free Speech, the BBC 3 debate show, deliberately dropped the question “When will it be right to be Muslim and gay?” on its March 12 episode at the request of the Birmingham Central Mosque where it was being filmed. The live programme, which featured a panel including government minister and Lib Dem peer Susan Kramer, broadcast a pre-recorded question by Asifa Lahore, who bills himself as Britain’s “first and only gay Muslim drag queen”.

A week later Dr Mohammad Naseem, the mosque’s long-time chairman, defended his decision in a letter sent to Huffington Post UK.

He wrote: “There are people with homosexual tendency in Muslim countries but they respect the law and control their desire as others do.” Human beings do have weaknesses and tendencies which are not socially acceptable and so they try to have a control over them and do not give in. “A compulsive murderer, gambler, paedophile etc. could present the same logic and ask for accommodation by the society. Are we going to accept on the basis of freedom of action?”

Dr Naseem said Lahore “does not know his religion and has not got much links with it. He would have, otherwise, known that it is prohibited in Islam. If he wants to pursue [sic] his inclination then he is free to leave Islam and follow any ideology that suits him.”

Dr Naseem said the subject of homosexuality was not the topic for a TV discussion show but something that should be investigated by specialists and added that “Not being able to accept them in religion should not be confused with denying them their human rights such as their right to have education, employment, housing and respect.”

Free Speech said in a statement: “The Birmingham Mosque had offered the venue as a location for an episode. When asked if there were any issues for discussion that would be off limits, no concerns were raised. As a result the production company, together with the BBC and the mosque, made the decision to postpone the debate of the topic homosexuality and Islam until March 25th but agreed to show the pre-recorded segment.

 

The Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/10710750/Mosque-leader-compares-being-gay-to-paedophilia-and-murder.html

The Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/03/19/gay-muslim_n_4993241.html?utm_hp_ref=tw

BBC: http://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-26576673

The Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/media/2014/mar/14/bbc3-free-speech-debate-gay-muslim

 

Media coverage related to immigrants and its effects on public opinion

March 19, 2014

 

The reactions of German media towards the result of the Swiss referendum were immense. Most  comments by German media outcried their “shock” about the negative attitudes of parts of the Swiss population towards immigrants. Some journalists were caught off guard, without reflecting their own work, asking how biased media coverage on immigrants has become. While selecting topics for the news, majority of media representatives choose issues such as the “headscarf”, “migration into the welfare system” and “minarets” issues. Just as “bad news are good news”, contributions that mirror the economic, cultural and social vibrant lives of immigrants are hard to find. Immigrants and their issues are relatively represented at the local level, speaking out their claims in local media. They are clearly underrepresented in media at the national, which has a greater influence on the German public opinion.

Recent German media coverage on immigrants and Islam has been very negative. With regards to the upcoming elections for the European parliament, media representatives are responsible to report fair, balanced and comprehensive when covering stories about immigrants. This is said to be the only path for media to avoid the indirect support for right-wing populist parties, which scapegoat immigrants for their political interests.

 

 

MiGAZIN: http://www.migazin.de/2014/03/19/die-geister-die-sie-selbst-mit-rufen/

Salafist group calls for boycott of French local elections

March 20, 2014

 

The organization Anâ-Muslim (“I am Muslim”) is calling for a boycott of France’s local elections via its website, social network and brochures.

Anâ-Muslim is a nonprofit organization recognized by the French state. Its members share their vision of Islam on the organization’s website, on its Facebook and Twitter pages, and on YouTube. A few days ago, Anâ-Muslim called on Muslims to boycott French municipal elections, which will take place on March 23 and 30. They explain this decision by using various religious arguments and by saying that for a Muslim person, “voting is an act of submission … while abstaining is an act of resistance.”

On its website, the organization explains that this campaign is aimed at Muslim people between 18 and 40 years old. They argue that refusing to participate in French politics is a way to “preserve their faith”: “Voting means recognizing the power of men on earth and giving them absolutely sovereignty to create their own laws that have nothing to do with Islam.” The organization’s goal, as described in their mission statement, is to “teach Islam to Muslims … because Muslims are the only ones who can control their destiny … and contribute to Islam’s resurgence so that humanity may be saved”.

 

“This is the first time that a Muslim organization calls for boycotting elections for religious reasons” 

There have been similar calls for boycotts in the past, but these came from informal Islamist groups. This is the first time that a state-recognized Muslim organization calls for boycotting elections for religious reasons.

The Anâ-Muslim group and their website have existed for about three years. It became a state-recognized organization a little over a year ago. There are about 100 members and sympathizers who have signed up online. The organization is mainly targeted towards Muslim intellectuals and students.

The founders can be divided into two categories: some of them are close to jihadist movements but who believe Muslims living in France don’t have to wage jihad. Others are former jihadists who, today, believe that promoting their vision through legal means is the best solution. People from these two categories created Anâ-Muslim with the idea that they would work out in the open, and follow the law.

Anâ-Muslim is mostly active in the Paris region, but also in some other cities like Marseille and Lyon. Their main activities are preaching and distributing pamphlets in the street. They don’t want anyone to associate them with groups like Forsane-Alizza [an organization that the French authorities shut down in 2012 after members called for armed combat.]

To put it simply, the organization’s members are people who are close to the jihadist Salafist ideology, but without the war aspect. This involves, among other things, refusing the “Taghout”, meaning any leaders who do not respect the precepts of Islam.

 

Contacted by FRANCE 24, Dalil Boubaker, the rector of the Great Mosque of Paris, shared his thoughts on the organization:

“Anâ-Muslim is an epiphenomenon. It has no real weight. Most Muslims in France – the vast majority of whom are involved in public and political life – won’t pay any attention to their call for a boycott. We live in a democracy, and it’s obvious that not participating in elections would be counterproductive for the Muslim community. In fact, the call for a boycott goes against the precepts of Islam. When the Prophet Mohammad died, his companions gathered and voted for his successor Abu Bakr, the first caliph. The Great Mosque of Paris and the French Council of Muslim Faith encourages all Muslims in France to take part in the local elections, and all elections.”

 

Source: http://observers.france24.com/content/20140320-salafist-organisation-boycott-french-elections

French parents alone against Syria jihad recruiters

March 21, 2014

 

When Dominique Bons’ timid son stopped smoking overnight and started praying frequently at his home in the southern French city of Toulouse, she alerted the authorities.

They did nothing because Nicolas was not suspected of any crime. One day last year he disappeared. Then Bons was sent a text message saying the 30-year-old had been “martyred” on December 22 driving a truck bomb in the Syrian city of Homs.

He grew up in a middle class suburb to atheist parents but converted to Islam in 2009. Like his younger half-brother who died in Syria months earlier, he joined the al Qaeda splinter group, Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

They are among a growing number of people, an estimated 2,000 so far, who have left Europeans states to fight alongside Islamist rebels in Syria to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad. Europe’s authorities are struggling to stem the flow.

Bons is angry that her efforts to alert the government to a potential problem were ignored and is also convinced that the strategy of France and other European countries of jailing those caught trying to get to Syria makes the situation worse.

“It’s crazy,” said Bons, a retired military secretary who has set up a support group for parents of children who have been radicalized. “In jail they will be reinforced in their desire to go back to Syria… It seems like they (the government) are doing whatever they can to ensure that this continues.”

In March, three men aged 21 to 26 were arrested at an airport in eastern France for sentenced to between two and six years for conspiracy to commit terrorist acts.

The population of French prisons is estimated to be up to 70 percent Muslim. Moderate preachers employed by the state are lacking, so a void is filled by untrained imams who preach a Salafist or hardline form of Islam and hatred of the West.

 

THERAPY OVER JAIL

For Europeans, travelling to Syria is a cheap flight to Turkey and a quick trip over the border, so the problem is one faced by many countries.

Most Europeans fighting in Syria join the Nusra Front or ISIL, the two militant opposition groups that are closest to al Qaeda and considered most dangerous by the West.

French volunteers have formed a fighting brigade within the Nusra Front, radio station RFI reported, made up of more than one hundred soldiers with the main rallying point the fact they can communicate in French and not in Arabic.

Between 600 and 700 French nationals or residents are believed to have volunteered for fighting or were involved in recruitment for Syria.

As in France, many European governments take a tough line, sending suspects to jail or making it more difficult to come home. Britain has said it would consider stripping the citizenship of dual nationals who tried to return after fighting in Syria.

Bons wants to see softer touches involving therapy to stop them becoming radicalized but this is rare.

“The problem is that the government thinks all these kids are potential Merahs,” Bons said. “What’s needed is some way to treat them in advance, to do preventative work with the help of psychiatrists and experts in the problem.”

France has said it will set up a hotline for families to alert local authorities if they detect signs their children are becoming radical.

 

RECRUITMENT

A French judge said last month when the first wave of volunteers returns home they step up recruitment and that is partly why the numbers are growing.

Bons does not know who persuaded her sons to go and fight but suspects it was through someone Nicolas met in Les Izards, the suburb where Merah spent much of his childhood, an overwhelmingly immigrant area unlike where they grew up.

Toulouse, as well as Nice, Strasbourg and Paris, are thought to be fertile recruiting grounds. Two teenagers from the city were placed under formal investigation for conspiracy to commit terrorism in late January for trying to get to Syria, and several others have been arrested.

After a video was published where Nicolas appeared clutching a Koran and Kalashnikov rifle in July 2013, calling on President Francois Hollande to convert to Islam and urging others to join the fight, Bons instantly became the face of jihadism in France. He and his brother were on the front page of several newspapers. Dominique said her son looked like a different person in the video “like someone possessed”, whereas before he had been timid.

 

UNSYMPATHETIC

Bons said despite alerting the authorities of her concerns, she has had very little help from the state.

After Nicolas left for Syria in early 2013, Bons wrote to Hollande asking for help to bring him home. The presidency told her it had transferred her request to the interior and justice ministries, but no action was taken.

“At this point, as a parent, you are totally on your own, you have no idea where to turn,” she said.

French Interior Minister Manuel Valls said in January that the government planned to set up a hotline for families.

“Families must be on alert for certain behaviors,” he told parliament in January. “We’ll need to come up with ways involving local officials and mayors for these families to alert our services.”

For Bons the worst part is that it is proving difficult to bring the body back for burial in France. She says the French authorities have been unsympathetic and the situation is complex because France has broken off diplomatic relations with Syria.

A few other parents have reached out but most are ashamed. In the absence of support from the authorities, Bons and others parents have set up support groups. Hers is called “Syrien ne bouge, agissons” a play on the word “Syrian” in French which translates to “If nothing is changing, let’s act”.

In Belgium the “Concerned Parents Collective” aims to stop teens leaving the country. In the eastern French town of Strasbourg a loose-knit group of moderate Muslim associations protested in January under the banner “Hands off our children”.

As part of its counter-terrorism strategy, Britain runs a program called “Channel”, which is designed to provide support to “individuals vulnerable to recruitment by violent extremists”, involving police, schools, social workers and other figures from local communities.

Other non-governmental community organizations, such as London-based Active Change Foundation, also run projects to deal with violent extremism and terrorist recruitment.

Bons said she had been contacted by other parents of young jihadis, including a mother in Nice and the group in Belgium. They agree that European governments needed to find better ways to fight radicalism of their children.

“The mothers are on the front line,” Bons said. “There are fathers, too, of course. But mothers will stop at nothing.”

 

Source: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/sns-rt-us-france-syria-20140321,0,2183507,full.story