Terror attack at Orly airport

A “radicalized Muslim” known to security services has been shot dead after attempting to steal a soldier’s gun at Paris Orly Airport.

The 39-year-old French citizen, identified as Ziyed Ben Belgacem, shot at police officers manning a checkpoint in northern Paris with an “air pistol” before launching the airport attack, the French interior minister said.

During a visit to the airport, Bruno Le Roux said one officer was shot during the routine check and was undergoing hospital treatment for injuries to his face.

“We can link the [airport attacker’s] identity with a check carried out at Garges-les-Gonesse by a patrol in Stains this morning,” he added.

 

Paris prosecutor Francois Molins told a news conference on Saturday evening that at the airport, Belgacem yelled he wanted to die in the name of Allah and said “whatever happens, there will be deaths”.

Mr Molins said the attacker held an air pistol to a soldier’s head and used her as a shield. He apparently wanted to use her weapon to shoot people in the busy airport.

Contrary to earlier reports by French officials, Mr Molins said the attacker did wrench away her powerful military-grade assault rifle.

The soldier’s colleagues fired three bursts – eight rounds in all – when they killed him.

Belgacem had a lengthy criminal history of violence, robbery and drug offences but was not on the “fiche S” list of terror threats, despite being investigated by the DGSI as a potential jihadi after indications of Islamist radicalisation emerged in 2015.

Mr Molins said three people were being held in police custody, and that Belgacem’s choice of target and evidence that he had been radicalised justified launching a terrorism investigation.

Belgacem is believed to have been radicalized in prison and was put under surveillance after being freed, although it was unclear when monitoring stopped.

Prosecutors said no evidence of extremism was uncovered in a search of his home, which was among scores raided in the immediate aftermath of the Paris attacks.

“The individual’s identity is known to the police and intelligence services.” Belgacem’s father and brother, as well as a cousin, have been detained for questioning.

Muslim who says she was fired for refusing flu shot sues Children’s Hospital Boston

February 4, 2014

 

A former Children’s Hospital Boston employee who said she was fired because her Islamic beliefs prohibited her from getting a mandatory flu shot sued the hospital today.

Leontine Robinson says in her complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Boston that her civil rights were violated because the hospital “intentionally discriminated against (her) due to her religious beliefs.” Some Muslims refuse flu shots because they contain a small amount of pork gelatine — a violation, the abstainers contend, of restrictions on consuming pork products.

Robinson, according to her complaint, worked in patient care at Children’s for about a year before a flu shot requirement was instituted in 2006. Hospital managers had known she was a Muslim when they hired her, the suit suggests, noting that she wore a traditional Muslim head-covering for women.

 

Boston Business Journal: http://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2014/02/04/muslim-who-says-she-was-fired-for.html

Muslim family challenges ‘do not resuscitate’ ruling over gravely ill man

November 9, 2013

 

A court will this week decide whether a seriously ill Muslim man should not be revived if his condition deteriorates – against the wishes of his family, who say it is God’s will that doctors must do all they can to keep him alive. The case, which will be seen in some quarters as a clash between the state and religion, is the first of its kind to deliver a judgment following a supreme court ruling last month that found doctors were right to withdraw treatment from a man in Liverpool.

The Muslim man, who has been in hospital for five-and-a-half months since suffering a heart attack, is barely conscious. The NHS trust in charge of the hospital where he is being cared for, and which cannot be named for legal reasons, argues that to revive him is not in the man’s best interests if his condition worsens.

The case will be studied closely by all faith groups, especially those who believe in a literal interpretation of scripture that, they claim, determines religious law must take precedence over law made by statute.

There have been legal challenges by Christian groups brought against right-to-die campaigners but this is the first challenge against a Do Not Resuscitate order following a ruling last month in the supreme court which said that appeal judges were right to allow doctors to withhold treatment from David James, a “gravely ill” man from Liverpool who died last December.

A verdict this week against the family is likely to dismay some Muslim groups. But, equally, many doctors’ groups are likely to resent any ruling that sees religious views take precedence. It is likely that either side could appeal if the ruling goes against them.

 

The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/nov/09/muslim-family-do-not-resuscitate-challenge-liverpool

Update: Dutch Court Jails Man for Plans to Fight in Syria

October 31, 2013

 

Last week, Nos television reported that a Dutch man had been jailed for planning to travel to Syria to take part in armed resistance against president Assad. Ignition fuses, aluminum powder and instructions for making explosives were among items found in his home.

The Rotterdam district court ruled that making preparations to travel to Syria, including buying a plane ticket and collecting funds, can be seen as preparation for murder and is punishable by law. The ruling is significant for the public prosecution of the Netherlands because until now there has been no jurisprudence on the issue, and this ruling will have implications for others planning to travel to Syria for similar purposes. The Public Prosecutor’s Office publicly commented on its support of the verdict.

In addition to jailing one man for a year on these grounds, a second man has been sent to a psychiatric hospital for the same intention. Mohammed G. collected money, cancelled rent, packed bags, and read ‘Jihadist texts’ as preparation for fighting in Syria. However, the man suffers from psychoses and will not receive a sentence but rather must go to a psychiatric hospital.

 

Dutch Newshttp://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2013/10/dutch_jail_man_for_preparing_t.php

NIS News: http://www.nisnews.nl/court-rules-preparing-for-jihad-is-a-crime.html

A Muslim daughter’s role in preparing her mother for burial – by Momtaz Begum-Hossain

October 25, 2013

I saw a wooden coffin, I answered the phone call to tell us that Umma, as we called our mother in Bengali, had left us, and later that same night saw her lying still like a ragdoll in the hospital ward. The burial was almost immediate. Within hours I was at the register office recording Umma’s death to get the certificate we needed to release her body. At home, my sisters were collating every teacup and saucer she had ever bought, for the well-wishers who were flooding our house with prayers.

We knew about the concept of heaven and hell and were warned that when a parent dies, their children’s prayers are the most important ones. Although a whole village in Bangladesh spent three days reading prayers for Umma, ours would have most impact.

Packed away in a suitcase in my parents’ bedroom was the white shroud that Umma was to be buried in. It had been washed in holy water from Mecca, for when the time came. She had been so busy talking about death and reminding us where to find the fabric that she never had a chance to explain to me and my three sisters that as her daughters we had duties after her death. In Islam it is a daughter’s duty to wash her mother and prepare her for the afterlife; boys attend to deceased fathers. Having never attended a funeral, I didn’t know what this involved. I soon discovered it wasn’t an elaborate bathe, but a wash down with sponges, towels, buckets of water and the bar of soap from my carrier bag.

There were two elder women in charge who directed us where and how to clean her. Umma was so devoted to her religion that I sensed she would be proud her daughters were taking part in such a symbolic ritual. As her limbs were lifted and we took it in turns to scrub her, it seemed as if her expressions were changing. She was a puppet, being moved, bent over, turned from side to side. I didn’t know it was possible to get this close to a dead person, let alone share in the most intimate experience their body would ever go through. She was washed an odd number of times. I can’t remember which number we settled on, just that the procedure was repeated until we were tired.

Afterwards she was dried with towels and scented with rose water. The room was suffused with the fragrance of Turkish delight, though she never wore perfume. Her beauty regime consisted of applying hair oil and moisturiser. I never saw her wear makeup and she had the smallest wardrobe of anyone I’ve ever known; just a handful of saris and blouses and petticoats she had made herself. Just as she had led a modest life, so it was for her funeral. Umma’s hair was combed and plaited and her body wrapped in the white fabric that Ubba, my father, had brought back from Mecca. When she was wrapped and laid to rest we anointed her with more rose water. We took her to a newly opened Muslim burial ground, she was buried there and her spot was marked with a hand-painted a plaque with my mother’s name and dates of birth and death.

Not everyone has a chance to say goodbye properly to someone they love, but I did more than that.

The Guardian: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/oct/26/muslim-daughter-mother-burial

Dutch Court Jails Man for Plans to Fight in Syria

October 23, 2013

Nos television reports that a Dutch man has been jailed for planning to travel to Syria to take part in armed resistance against President Assad. The court ruled that making preparations to travel to Syria, including buying a plane ticket and collecting funds, can be seen as preparation for murder and is punishable by law. The ruling is significant for the public prosecution department of the Netherlands because until now there has been no jurisprudence on the issue, and this ruling will have implications for other planning to travel to Syria for similar purposes. In addition to jailing one man for a year on these grounds, a second man has been sent to a psychiatric hospital for the same intention.

Dutch Newshttp://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2013/10/dutch_jail_man_for_preparing_t.php

Sixth Dutch Muslim Dies in Syria

20 September 2013

 

An 18 year old man fighting with rebel forces in Syria has become the sixth Dutch person to be killed in the conflict. Soufyan el H, who told his parents he was going to work in a hospital, was shot in the head during a gun battle with government forces.

According to the Volkskrant newspaper, officials estimate between 50 and 100 Dutch Muslims have travelled to Syria to join the conflict, but Muslim community sources place the number higher.

Islam, a Florentine woman forced to use the veil and beaten by her husband

In 2010, after having embraced the Islamic faith, she flew to Egypt where she married a man she met only a few months earlier. A husband, 33 year-old Egyptian man, who turned out to have an abusive side, this side which slowly became a river of aggression. Until last Sunday, August 25 when the woman, 30 year-old Florentine, exhausted and frightened, denounced her husband due to his abuse.

Due to the beating, the women, upon arrival at the hospital had bruises on her face and legs, her ordeal had also weakened in her psyche. She was also forced to wear the veil and dress conservatively in dark colors. She lived locked in the house with the windows sealed to avoid being seen also isolating her from potential help allowing her no space or autonomy. The 33-year old husband, in recent times, was becoming more extreme. So much so that he had taken over the phone, her only contact with the outside world.

Compounding the situation was that he beat her even in front of their own children during the 6 months and two years of their relationship.

He also threatened to kill her, even threatening her own family. Her mother was also beaten and threatened with death by the North African. Despite this his in-laws gave the couple money to buy a house in the southern suburbs of the city, where the young couple lived with their children.

The woman went to the Florentine hospital saying she had back pain but then burst into tears in front of the doctors.

police officers, directed by Dr. Alexander Ausenda, approached the victim inside the hospital while her husband waited in the waiting room. Then they accompanied him to the police station. Here an agent, a woman, handcuffed and took the man to prison. The 33 year old did not speak as his his wife and children were taken to a safe house.

‘Hero’ police officer stabbed at mosque is discharged from hospital

The police officer heralded a hero after being stabbed in the chest and stomach while he disarmed a knife-wielding attacker at a mosque is to be discharged from hospital. The 31-year-old officer was brutally attacked when he responded to an incident in Birmingham where a man who had brandished a knife was shouting “don’t mock Islam” and attacking worshippers. The alleged attacker was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and remains at a secure mental health unit after doctors deemed him unfit to be interviewed, West Midlands Police have confirmed.

 

Commenting on an official West Midlands Police Twitter account, the unidentified injured officer said: “Consultant has been in to see me this morning. Op went great. Will be discharged later today.” In the comment posted in the early hours of this morning, he also thanked medics and people at the mosque for their help during the incident last weekend, adding: “It means a lot to know the community has our backs.” Chief Superintendent Alex Murray, speaking yesterday, said there was nothing to suggest the incident was a hate crime, or that it was connected with other similar incidents in the wake of Drummer Lee Rigby’s death in Woolwich, south east London.

 

A 28-year-old man stabbed in the arm during the attack and a 36-year-old man who was stabbed once in the thigh remain in hospital in a stable condition, while a third man who suffered a hand injury is recovering at home.

Three men and a police officer treated in hospital after stabbing at mosque

Three men and a police officer are being treated in hospital after they were stabbed at a mosque, West Midlands Police have confirmed today. A 32-year-old man is now being questioned on suspicion of attempted murder, police said. Initial reports suggest an argument may have taken place inside the mosque prior to the attack. The male police officer was attacked after being called to attend reports that three men had been stabbed at the mosque in the Ward End area of Birmingham. All four men are described as in a stable condition. Mohammed Shafiq, the leader of national Muslim organisation the Ramadhan Foundation, said a nearby resident overheard an argument coming from inside the mosque and believes the attack followed a dispute between members. Officers were today conducting patrols in the area surrounding the mosque to reassure local residents. A cordon is in place while investigations continue at the mosque. Police are investigating whether the attack was a hate crime.