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News on Orphans: Fatwa Gives Lifeline to Sudan Orphans

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  • Zafar Khan
    Fatwa Gives Lifeline to Sudan Orphans IslamOnline.net & Newspapers Sat. Apr. 5, 2008
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 5, 2008
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      Fatwa Gives Lifeline to Sudan Orphans
      IslamOnline.net & Newspapers
      Sat. Apr. 5, 2008


      CAIRO — Thanks to a Muslim fatwa (religious edict) and
      efforts by the government, backed by religious leaders
      and aid groups, children born out the wedlock are
      finding a new chance in Sudanese society.
      "It is really a social revolution," Mona Abdullah
      el-Faki, a government social worker, told The New York
      Times on Saturday, April 5.

      Abandoned children in Sudan are traditionally viewed
      as the product of an illicit union and therefore a
      disgrace, discouraging many Sudanese from adopting
      children whose parents are not known to have died.

      Maygoma orphanage mirrored how abandoned children
      whose parents were not known to have died were

      They were totally neglected, left to grow nearly mute
      and badly stunted.

      "It was no place to raise children," said Osman Abu
      Fatima, a UNICEF program officer.

      "There were children who could not speak because no
      one talked to them. Some were malnourished. All were
      unloved. No one touched or held them. After my first
      visit I was traumatized by it for a long time."

      But the situation totally changed following a fatwa
      issued by Sudan's highest religious body that
      abandoned children are also orphans that the society
      has a duty to care for them.

      The fatwa also said that children born out of wedlock
      should not be made to suffer the consequences of their
      parents' sins.

      The government, helped by UNICEF and local aid groups,
      also joined to change the societal view of the
      abandoned children, adopting a law allowing adoption.

      "It was very difficult to persuade people that
      adoption is not forbidden in Islam. There are a lot of
      misconceptions," said Faki, who supervises foster care
      of children from Maygoma.


      The concerted efforts are beginning to bear fruit,
      encouraging some Sudanese to adopt abandoned children.

      "A home with no children is a very bad place," Fatima
      told the Times.

      "Family is very important in our society."

      The 40-year-old and her husband have been trying for
      years to conceive a child until they gave up hope of
      ever having a family.

      But one day, Fatima heard a radio program about foster
      care through Maygoma Orphanage.

      Fatima brought a boy named Khalid home but she was
      worried that her husband would reject.

      "But he said, ‘it is very important for us to adopt
      this child,’ " she said.

      "God loves all children."

      Changes, however, are not that complete as many
      husbands still oppose adoption.

      Khanssa Sandal has been a foster mother to seven
      children, the latest being Muayid, whom she took in
      when he was 2 months old. But her husband refused to
      allow her to adopt the one-year-old child.

      "Each time it gets more painful to say goodbye," she
      said, clinging to big-eyed Muayid, who hid in the
      folds of her shawl.

      Among the children she also wanted to adopt was a boy
      named Siddiq but the husband opposed.

      "I wanted to adopt him, but my husband refused," she
      said. "I cried for weeks. I still miss him."

      Back to Iraq for Orphans
      IslamOnline.net & Newspapers
      Fri. Apr. 4, 2008


      CAIRO — No sooner Army Capt. Jon Powers returned to
      Washington after a 14-month dusty, exhausting tour of
      duty in Iraq, he went back to the war-torn country for
      helping the Iraqi orphans traumatized by the US-led
      "When I finally had time to decompress at home is when
      I decided to go back," Powers told the Christian
      Science Monitor on Friday, April 4.

      Powers returned to Iraq in August 2005, a year after
      he had left to run a charity to help Iraqi orphans.

      "This is an extension of my time there. War Kids is an
      extension of my time there," he said.

      After spending a 14-month dusty, exhausting tour of
      duty in Iraq, Powers returned to Buffalo, New York, in
      July 2004.

      One day, he got a call from a filmmaker making a
      documentary about Powers's unit in Baghdad to speak
      about his experience in Iraq in 20 US cities.

      "All this traveling around to talk about it helped me
      better understand my thoughts on the war," he said

      ".… I realized for the first time my story wasn't as
      personal as I thought it was.

      "I could be a voice for it."

      During a screening in New York City, Powers met with a
      member of Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, Joe
      Donahue, who asked him what he would do if he could go
      back to Iraq.

      "Without a doubt, help the kids," Powers replied

      "If we don't find a way to positively engage these
      kids we'll be fighting them for centuries. It plays
      right into the extremists."


      Enthusiastic about Powers's idea, Donahue pledged to
      seek backing from the Vietnam Veterans of America

      After getting a funding contract from the foundation,
      Powers returned to in August 2005 to found an
      orphanage in Baghdad.

      "I literally talked my way into the green zone," he

      For week, the Iraq war veteran met with high-ranking
      Iraqi ministers to drum up support for the project. He
      also sent discreet delegations of Iraqis to meet with
      the directors of two orphanages in Adhamiyah

      "He had a lot of passion for the project," Donahue
      said of Powers, who has also outlined plans for a
      Baghdad network of work-study centers for the older
      kids but has not yet obtained funding though the Iraqi
      government now has the blueprint for setting up the

      Five years after the 2003 US-led invasion, the daily
      lives of Iraqis have worsened with millions having
      insufficient access to clean water, sanitation,
      electricity and health care.

      With estimates putting the death toll at between
      100,000 and one million, millions of families are left
      without bread-winners

      According to the United Nation, 17 percent of Iraqi
      children are permanently out of primary school.

      An estimated 220,000 more are missing school because
      they and their families have been displaced or have to
      help support the family.

      Powers says his orphanage is the result of his
      "defining experience" in Iraq.

      "For me, it's been a real long process to get to the
      point I am today."

      Orphans Day: Tulkarem thriving, Hebron facing closures
      by Israeli forces
      04.04.08 - 14:04


      Tulkarem / PNN – Friday marks “Orphan Day” in
      Tulkarem, which runs one of the oldest and most
      important institutions. The Orphans Society House was
      established in 1961, but shut down for a time in 1967
      under the pretext of “helping the children of

      The children receive food, clothes, housing, social
      and educational studies, and love and care. A group of
      women began this project and it is thriving.

      In the southern West Bank’s Hebron Israeli forces
      continue to threaten to close several orphanages, with
      one given a notice until 1 May. Students and children
      who live in the cities orphanages are protesting via
      nonviolent sit-ins on a daily basis. Public offices
      are calling for international help against the Israeli
      interference in this Palestinian city.

      President of the Orphans Society House in the northern
      West Bank’s Tulkarem, Abu Bakr Attaf, says, “We have
      been more than 45 years strengthening the spirit of
      homeless children. The general population contains 55
      girls and 45 boys.

      “We provide all of the basic needs, but also
      humanitarian and charitable educations and social
      The President continued, “We are Muslim people who
      have in our religion a love and kindness, a need to
      care for the marginalized, as a part of our belief
      system. We assume responsibility for these children.
      This is one of the oldest institutions of its kind.”

      Abu Bakr is asking that official, civil, local, Arab,
      Islamic and international institutions offer their
      support and assistance to enable the orphanage to
      “continue the journey” and perform its mission.

      Twenty-two people are on staff, including the business
      sector of accountants and secretaries, but also social
      workers, teachers and cooks.

      Orphan welfare


      According to UNICEF reports, there are as many as one
      hundred thousand orphans in the Valley. There is no
      denying the fact that scores of orphanages operate in
      the Valley. These orphanages are doing a commendable
      job and deserve appreciation. However, these special
      homes cater to the needs of two thousand orphans only.
      Rest have been left by the indifferent society to fend
      for themselves. Both the state and the society have an
      important role to play viz-a-viz rehabilitation of
      orphans. The state, for obvious reasons, has decided
      not to help the orphans of militants. The society,
      therefore, is left with no option but to take up the
      challenge. According to International Journal of
      Current Medical Science and Practice, the Valley
      people used to adapt the orphans in their respective
      localities before the militancy commenced. But during
      the turmoil when this was needed most, the people
      became indifferent. Even the surviving relatives of
      the orphans have failed to provide succor to these
      hapless souls. The problem, according to the Journal,
      can be addressed and solved if the collective
      conscience of the society awakens. But this is where
      the problem lies. Gone are the days when the people
      used to look in their neighbourhood for orphans and
      widows. In contemporary times nobody has time for such
      phinltrophic activities. Present day Kashmir is
      predominantly Muslim in character. Muslims are under a
      religious obligation to work for upbringing of the
      orphans. Allah has made a mention of orphans at scores
      of places in the Holy Quran and directed them to treat
      them well. Similarly the last Messenger of Allah has
      repeatedly urged Muslims to work for welfare and
      rehabilitation of orphans. But the Muslims seem to
      have ignored these teachings. The results are obvious.
      The hapless souls are suffering and God forbid if
      preventive measures are not taken now, the neglected
      orphans can turn into anti-social elements. And if it
      happens, the consequences can only be imagined. If
      perceived from a religious point of view, the orphans
      are not unfortunate or children of “Lesser God.” In
      fact they are special children as they enable a Muslim
      to achieve ultimate salvation. Therefore, by helping
      an orphan a Muslim is actually helping himself.
      Ignoring an orphan who lives in a neighbourhood is an
      unpardonable sin. Allah the almighty shall take such
      persons to task on the day of judgement. The problem
      can be solved if people rise to the occasion. If there
      are a handful of orphans in a particular locality, the
      local people can feed them well on their own without
      outside assistance. Contributing a few hundred rupees
      every month for the welfare of orphans should not be a
      problem for the well off persons who live in that
      locality. The orphans do not need hefty sums. Yes,
      money is needed but the orphans need love and
      affection as well. The Holy Prophet (SAW) has shown
      how orphans have to be taken care of. One has to get
      personally involved in the job. This is the sunnah of
      the Holy Prophet (SAW). The persons who cannot
      contribute to orphan fund can be entrusted with the
      job of interacting with orphans. Welfare of the
      orphans is the collective responsibility of the
      society. Every body has to play his role. Nobody can
      escape responsibility. “One who eats while his
      neighbor starves is not a Muslim.” This is what the
      Last Messenger (SAW) of Allah has said.

      Israeli Army Loots a Palestinian Orphanage
      Sabbah's blog
      March 17, 2008


      Who creates the violence and the terror attacks on
      Israel, the Zionist regime itself or the charitable
      organizations? Who is the real terrorist and criminal:
      the IDF Central Command and its thugs, or the
      charitable organizations which supply the Palestinian
      orphans, the poor, and the children of poor families
      in Hebron?

      Does Israel create peace and security for their
      country with the regime of continued assassinations of
      political activists, jailing youths, building
      apartheid walls, increasing the number and brutality
      of IDF checkpoints, confiscations of lands, murdering
      children, destroying Palestinian houses and closing
      the charities by the IDF, or is this regime just yet
      another one in their long series of criminal actions
      against humanity which bring shame and scandal to Jews

      The Israeli military Commander of Hebron Colonel
      Yehuda Fuchs said that "under our Laws, the military
      can do whatever they want. And that none of the peace
      agreements hinder the IDF activities in the occupied

      On Tuesday, 26 February 2008, Major General Gadi
      Shamni, GOC of the Central Command, issued several
      criminal "military orders" to seize the infrastructure
      and all property of the orphanage and daycare center
      for children of the poor families in Hebron, which is
      financed by charitable organization and is run by the
      Palestinian Authority in Hebron. The immoral, illegal
      and criminal orders issued by GOC Shamni was directed
      against the Houses for Orphan Girls and Boys, the
      House for Care of Babies (a daycare center), the "Cake
      Bakeries", against shops which distribute clothing to
      the orphans and to poor families, Trade center in the
      city, food and flower stores, the stocks of food which
      are also distributed to poor families, the physical
      therapy institute, the barbershop, the library,
      Salons, a supermarket, the Islamic schools for boys
      and girls, and the Islamic chartable organization for
      According to the illegal military order, 13500
      orphans, 1000 poor families, 9000 school children,
      2500 children receiving care, and 800 workers should
      be cut off of their social and educational security,
      their jobs destroyed, and the properties of these
      charitable organizations must be transferred to the
      property of GOC Gadi Shamni by 1st April 2008.

      On Tuesday, 26 February 2008, the thugs under order of
      the Hebron district Israeli military commander Yehuda
      Fuchs and General Gadi Shamni, proceeded to illegally
      appropriate eight lorries containing food and clothes
      destined to the orphans under care of the center. A
      large contingent of Israeli IDF troops raided the
      premises of the orphanage, ransacking all the sleeping
      rooms, offices, and other property belonging to the
      charities, and destroying everything belonging to the
      defenseless orphans under care of the charity. Colonel
      Fuchs ordered the Israeli military to steal the food
      and other property of the orphans, as well as those of
      Abed Al- Khader Al-Kaisy, a Hebron resident who lives
      with his two sons and their families over four shops
      in a building which belong to the charities which the
      Israeli military plans to appropriate.

      The criminal commander Fuchs told Mr. Al-Kaisy: they
      knew that he is not a member of Hamas but they had
      orders to confiscate the shops. Fuchs added that under
      emergency law the military can do whatever they want,
      and that none of the peace agreements hinder the IDF
      activities in the occupied cities.

      Which emergency does Fuchs mean ? Is it necessary to
      loot the food from the orphans, is it necessary to
      provoke the inhabitants of a quite city ? What
      emergency does this miserable and bloodthirsty thug
      mean, exactly, which would justify stealing food from
      the poorest of the poor ?

      To add insult to injury. the food stolen from the
      Palestinian orphans went to the kitchen of the
      well-fed soldiers of the IDF at Colonel Yehuda Fuchs’

      Sheikh Dr. Taisir Rajab Al-Tamimi, the Chief of Judges
      of the Palestinian Authority and the Chairman of High
      Council of Islamic Law, commented on the illegal order
      of Shamni and the behavior of the troops under orders
      of Fuchs. He said that the soldiers and commanders
      committed uncounted crimes against humanity in Hebron
      and other Palestinian cities and towns every day, that
      they are destroying the social, the economic,
      industrial, and educational life in our homeland. He
      described the closure of the orphans houses, schools,
      and charities organizations as a clear violation to
      the fourth Geneva Convention. According to this
      convention, the GOC command and the Israeli occupation
      authorities can not close, steal or otherwise
      appropriate the public or the private property of
      others and transfer them into their property.

      Dr. Al-Tamimi clarified that the IDF order to close
      the schools, the charities and the orphanage houses
      and the theft of food, clothes, and the closure of the
      bakery shops is a criminal action committed by unwise
      commanders who are intent in seeding violence and
      terror actions in Palestine and causing famine among
      the people in the city of Hebron. Dr. Al-Tamimi
      described Shamni and Fuchs as "an octopus who wants to
      swallow the Palestinian land and property after
      jailing the owners". Yes, the Octopus Fuch stole the
      old city under his control and then started closing
      the organizations under the the PA in other parts of
      the city. This is Colonel Fuch, he is a real Octopus.

      Mr. Abed Al-Kareem Farrah, the attorney of the Islamic
      charitable organization said "I would like to
      emphasize that our organization and our property is
      under control and observation of the PA, and that
      there is no official connection between us and Hamas.
      Perhaps some of our workers belong to Hamas, just as
      in other institutions such as the municipalities, but
      there is no formal connection. And our financial
      reports are open and transparent. We are in no way the
      infrastructure of Hamas".

      Mr. Farrah said that he would have been happy if the
      IDF explained the steps it took, and what is permitted
      or forbidden in terms of his organization. The
      movement has already hired the services of Israeli
      attorney Jawad Bulus, who will appeal before the
      attorney general on behalf of their organizations and
      try to overturn the evil decree and the irresponsible
      and criminal decision of the IDF.

      On Tuesday, 11 March 2008, over 8000 angry students
      and Palestinian citizens representing Fatah, Hamas,
      Jihad, Popular Committee, National Committee,
      Democratic Committee, as well as PA officials
      demonstrated in Hebron against the Israeli Illegal
      decision of closing the charitable organizations which
      helps orphans, poor families and youths. The
      demonstrators affirmed their legal right to present
      criminal complaints against the Israeli decision at
      the International Criminal Court.

      The direct perpetrators of this immoral crime, namely
      Fuchs, Shamni, the Shin Bet, the Israeli Office of the
      Prime Minister, the Israeli War Ministry, the
      Americans, should not count on the strict limitations
      of jurisdiction for the prosecution of genocide and
      crimes against humanity set by most national
      jurisdictions and by the ICC (for example) - there are
      signs that these apparently so strict limitations of
      jurisdiction do not hold in the special case of
      Israel, and there are sound legal reasons for this.
      The orders issued by Shamni are proof admissible in
      court against him and others of grave crimes against
      humanity, war crimes. His orders have no basis in any
      law whatsoever - the so-called "British mandate"
      (colonial occupation) never had any legitimacy
      whatsoever, and their immoral "laws" expired together
      with the end of their occupation, in 1948. By issuing
      these orders, Shamni has exposed himself and others to
      prosecution for imposing condition conducive to
      genocide on the Palestinian population of Hebron, and
      he should not count on the assurances of impunity by
      people like Beinisch, who is herself a candidate for
      the slammer.

      The extremists and terrorists in the so-called "Civil
      Administration", Shamni, Olmert, Fuchs, Barak,
      Dichter, Sheetrit, Livni, Diskin and the other
      planners, financers and perpetrators of genocide
      against Palestinians should judiciously study the life
      and demise of criminals like Ceaucescu, Eichmann,
      Goebbels, Goering, Pinochet, Marcos, and many others.
      Whatever they do to cover up their crimes, everything
      is coming to light, and there will be no powerful
      friends able or willing to provide protection.

      Gadi Shamni must immediately rescind his criminal
      orders and restore the orphanage and all its property
      to the statu quo ante, the state it was in before his
      soldiers rampaged through the premises. He must return
      all stolen property, all food, clothes, and other
      resources, he must repair all damages done to
      buildings, private property, equipment of the
      orphanage and all the other premises ransacked by his

      Appeal to readers: Please contact the Israeli Embassy
      in your country and ask them to return the stolen food
      and clothes to the orphans of Hebron.
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