Are some mosques brewing militant Islam and terrorism? France thinks so, and they are doing something about it.
Over the past three years, France has deported 40 foreign imams for “preaching hatred.” A quarter of those have taken place since the January terror attacks in Paris, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said on Monday.
The minister vowed to clamp down on mosques and preachers inciting hatred after a suspected Islamist beheaded his boss during an attack on a gas factory last week, according to Radio France International.
Any “foreign preacher of hate will be deported,” said Cazeneuve, adding that several mosques were being investigated for inciting terrorism and if found to be doing so, “will be shut down.”
Yassin Salhi, 35, on Sunday confessed during interrogation to killing his boss and pinning his head to a fence of the Air Products factory near the eastern city of Lyon.
The severed head was discovered flanked by two Islamic flags and it later emerged Salhi had sent a selfie of himself with the head to a number believed to belong to a French jihadist currently in Syria.
After the attack French Prime Minister Manuel Valls told French television, “We cannot lose this war because it’s fundamentally a war of civilization. It’s our society, our civilization that we are defending.”
Radical cleric Abu Qatada has appeared in court in Jordan after being deported from the UK. His plane left RAF Northolt at 02:46 BST for his home country, where he was formally charged with terror offences, which he denies. Prime Minister David Cameron said he was “delighted” at his removal. Abu Qatada was first arrested in the UK over alleged terror connections in 2001. He was rearrested in 2005, when attempts to deport him began. The Palestinian-Jordanian cleric’s deportation was finally able to proceed after the UK and Jordan signed a treaty agreeing that evidence obtained through torture would not be used against him.
Home Secretary Theresa May said she was glad that the government’s determination to remove him had been “vindicated”. “This dangerous man has now been removed from our shores to face the courts in his own country,” she said. She added that she wanted to streamline such deportation processes in future. “I am also clear that we need to make sense of our human rights laws and remove the many layers of appeals available to foreign nationals we want to deport.
Speaking on BBC Breakfast, Mrs May said she had been provided with updates on the deportation throughout the night and that she had been “as frustrated as the public” about the estimated £1.7m cost and length of time it had taken to remove Abu Qatada, but that people would welcome the end result.
There was tight security as Abu Qatada arrived back in Jordan – where he grew up – for the first time in more than 20 years. He was immediately driven from Marka airbase to the state security court – a journey that would have taken just a few minutes. After the hearing his lawyer Tayseer Diab said: “The attorney general interrogated him today, and he directed a series of accusations towards him – he accused him of conspiracy to take part in terrorist acts. My client denied all the allegations, and he asserts that his return to Jordan was out of his own free will, in order to be with his family. The procedure was carried out well, and he received good treatment.”
Asked whether Abu Qatada’s wife and children would have the right to stay in the UK, Mrs May said they would have to decide what they want their future to be before the government gets involved.
June 20 2013
Parool reports that a Moroccan woman living in Amsterdam faces deportation as an illegal immigrant, though her four children have Dutch nationality.
Aicha el Maher was picked up by officials carrying out a spot check on the take-away café where they say she was working illegally. El Maher denies this. She has been held since in a deportation center in Rotterdam.
El Maher’s four children aged 8, 6, 3, and almost 2, are being cared for by a friend while immigration lawyers argue her case.
A spokesman for the deportation service said earlier this week that El Maher can opt to take her children back to Morocco with her. Her husband is 20 years older than her and is unable to care for them.
The Minister of Interior Hans-Peter Friedrich (CSU) aims to facilitate the expulsion and deportation of religious extremists living in Germany. Salafists and fundamental Muslims would threaten the peaceful coexistence.
The Minister proposes to expand the the law of expulsion, deporting foreigners who have been using “violence to achieve their religious goals”, or have “called for violence or threatened to use it”. So far, this law legitimizes the expulsion and deportation of foreigner with the ambition to use violence for “political goals”.
Also, the Minister proposed to to tighten the law in deporting foreigners who have been convicted and sentenced for one year imprisonment. The law of expulsion legitimizes the deportation of foreigners in case of three years imprisonment.
The proposals are not expected to be implemented as they do not apply to EU immigrants, unless they construct a “imminent threat for society”, and foreigners living in Germany over five years. However the proposals are interpreted to be tactically motivated. This September, the German Federal parliamentary elections will take place and the Minister is expected to motivate the conservative voter base.
Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper welcomes the news Abu Qatada could return to Jordan, saying: “We all agree he should stand fair trial there so justice can be done.” The Radical Muslim cleric Abu Qatada will return to Jordan voluntarily when the Jordanian parliament ratifies a deal with Britain that ensures he will receive a fair trial, the cleric’s lawyer told a London court on Friday. Abu Qatada’s pledge is a victory for the British government after nearly eight years of unsuccessful attempts to deport the cleric, who is accused of spreading radical ideas that once inspired one of the Sept. 11, 2001 hijackers.
Courts have repeatedly blocked deportation on the grounds that a trial in Jordan of Abu Qatada, whose real name is Mohammed Othman, risked being tainted by the use of evidence obtained using torture.
Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper said: “This could be very good news if it means Abu Qatada returns to Jordan as soon as possible – as we all agree he should stand fair trial there so justice can be done. Abu Qatada should have made this decision a long time ago as this legal process has dragged on far too long. We will watch the next steps closely until he departs, but I hope this saga can now be brought to an end.”
In this piece The Guardian the home secretary, Theresa May, has said police are examining evidence seized over the recent arrest of Islamic cleric Abu Qatada to see if he can be prosecuted in UK courts. Judges at the court of appeal have repeatedly blocked the preacher’s deportation, amid fears he would face an unfair trial based on evidence obtained by torture in his native Jordan. On Thursday she refused to set a timetable on when he would be deported. May has negotiated with the Jordanian authorities to secure assurances about the evidence that would be used in his trial. She is due to launch a UK Supreme Court appeal against her latest rebuff.
French Secretary of State, Manuel Valls, has warned of the dangers of Islamic radicalisation in France. In an interview published by Le Parisien, Valls voices his concern about the state of Islamic radicalism in the country and estimates that there are dozens of more new Merahs in the country who need to be fought against.
According to him, France is fighting an “exterior enemy” in Mali whilst simultaneously fighting on a battlefront against the “enemy from within”, Muslim radicals, in France itself. As a result of France’s battle against fundamentalists, the government has dismantled a number of radical groups in the country and threatened with the deportation of radical preachers.
He calls on “French Islam” to ally itself with French imams educated in the country’s universities “who speak French and preach in French”. He however also speaks of the financial situations of mosques and raises the question of looking into who is behind the funding of mosques, whether its “friendly states or not”.
IFP Press – March 25, 2012
A Muslim lesbian couple who claim they will be killed if deported to their native Israel due to their sexuality is being given a second chance to remain in Canada. Iman Musa and Majida Mugrabi, of Toronto, arrived in Canada from Tel Aviv in 2007 and filed unsuccessful refugee claims that were appealed to the Federal Court of Canada.
Judge Roger Hughes on March 8 granted the couple another hearing by an Immigration and Refugee Board based on new information that shows one of Mugrabi’s cousin confessed to the “honour killing” of his sister 12-years ago. The couple in an emotional letter that was presented to court claimed they would be killed if turfed to Israel for being a same-sex Muslim couple.
The couple, through their lawyer, Daniel Kingwell, said they were pleased by the court’s decision but still fear for their lives. “Musa’s brother has threatened to kill her if she does not leave her lesbian relationship and marry a male,” the women alleged. “There are several police complaints regarding the threats of her brother.”
Kingwell said the women will be killed if deported to Israel. No date has been set for a new hearing.
In the jittery months after the 9/11 attacks, the federal government created a program that required thousands of Arab and Muslim men to register with the authorities, in an effort to uncover terror links and immigration violations.
After complaints that the practice, known as special registration, amounted to racial profiling, the Homeland Security Department scaled back the program in 2003, and ended it late last month, saying it “no longer provides a unique security value.”
But for Mohammed G. Azam, a 26-year-old Bangladeshi native who came to the United States when he was 9, its legacy lives on. When he registered in Manhattan in 2003, officials began deportation proceedings, and now, eight years and numerous hearings later, his case has outlasted the program.
Mr. Azam is one of hundreds, or perhaps thousands, of people still caught in the program’s net, immigration experts say.