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Sharia News Watch 73

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  • Enzo Picardie
    Sharia News Watch 73 : a collection newsquotes on Sharia, for research & educational purposes only. [*] Shortcut URL:
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 29, 2003
      Sharia News Watch 73 : a collection newsquotes on Sharia, for
      research & educational purposes only. [*] Shortcut URL:

      The Sharia Newswatch provides a weekly update of news quotes on
      Sharia (Islamic Law) & related subjects, as appearing on the major
      news- searchengines. All editions :


      Theological 'Iron Curtain' Descending in Afghanistan - 16 Sep 03
      http://www.afgha.com/?af=article&sid=37354 [CBN News]
      D.C.-based human rights expert Nina Shea .. worries that in addition
      to investing in the political and economic reconstruction of
      Afghanistan, the U.S. is overseeing the creation of hard-line Islamic
      jurisprudence. Shea continued, "There is a theological iron curtain
      descending on Afghanistan under our auspices. We are spending billions
      of dollars to reconstruct this country but yet we are poised to
      promote a constitution that would install a 7th century version of
      Islam." A kind of law where those who dissent or criticize Islam are
      subject to blasphemy or apostasy charges, "which can carry the death
      penalty in Islamic jurisprudence," she said.
      According to Shea, [Chief Justice Mullah Fazul] Shinwari recently
      spoke with a U.S. delegation of religious freedom advocates. Shea says
      he told them, "We will no longer have public spectacles in the sport
      stadium of people being flogged and stoned to death, that will be done

      Afghanistan to Unveil Constitution Draft - 28 Sep 03
      A draft of Afghanistan's proposed constitution declares the country a
      Muslim state but does not impose Islamic Shariah law - the topic of
      heated debate, an official said Sunday. .. The document's preamble
      declares, "Afghanistan is an Islamic state'' and says its laws must be
      in accordance with Islam, but it stops short of imposing Shariah, the
      official said.
      Even though the 35 members of the Constitutional Review Commission
      have finally agreed to the wording of the text, it is far from certain
      whether members of the loya jirga [grand council] will reach a
      consensus. Many of the council's members are warlords and may feel
      their authority will be undermined by a strong national constitution.

      Afghan Insurgents Burn Down Girls' School - 28 Sep 03
      The single-story Shaga Primary School was left in ruins after the
      arson attack late Saturday in the Dara-e-Noor district of Nangarhar
      province, information ministry official Zubair Khaksar said in a
      telephone interview from the province's capital of Jalalabad. The
      attackers tied up the school's guard and set the building on fire
      before fleeing, Khaksar said. "This is the work of the Taliban," he
      said. "Nobody else burns schools."
      Fighters from Hezb-e-Islami, the Taliban and al-Qaida are believed to
      have stepped up attacks against government troops, aid workers and
      schools, especially in the east and south of Afghanistan where the
      country borders Pakistan. On Wednesday, an Afghan aid worker was
      killed and his driver was wounded in an ambush in the southern
      province of Helmand. Earlier this month, suspected Taliban fighters
      burned down an elementary school for boys and girls in Mughal Khil,
      south of the Afghan capital, Kabul.
      Two tents housing schools for girls in the Charar Bolak district in
      Balkh province were destroyed in the blaze late on Sunday, said Abdul
      Sabur Khan, a local military official. It is the first such attack in
      the Balkh province, considered a stronghold of the anti-Taliban
      northern alliance that helped an American-led force oust the hardline
      Taliban militia and their al-Qaeda allies in 2001.

      Kylie rides Kabul airwaves - 28 Sep 03
      Two years ago, Massood Sanjer was reading the news in English for the
      Taliban's Radio Shariat. Today he is one of Kabul's hippest disc
      jockeys, broadcasting from a studio adorned with posters of Shakira
      and Destiny's Child. Sanjer works for Arman FM, the nearest thing the
      Afghan capital has to MTV, with a mix of music, chat and jokes. For a
      country starved of entertainment through years of war and repressive
      Taliban rule, Arman FM is like a breath of fresh air.
      But what makes Arman FM even more exceptional in this conservative
      Muslim land is that half its presenters are women -- Sanjer shares his
      morning show with Zarlasht Madad, a soft-spoken young women recently
      voted the station's most popular.
      The Mohsenis put up half of the $500,000 (315,000 pounds) to launch
      Arman -- the name means Hope in the Dari language. The other half was
      supplied by USAID, the development arm of the U.S. government.
      In the early days, Arman was criticised because some of its presenters
      used the slang Dari of the streets rather than the formal language
      used by broadcasters in the past. Its irreverent attitude and jokey
      manner also alienated some people. "The criticism is like a drop in
      the ocean," Sanjer insists. "It was the first time Afghans listened to
      a radio station with men and women chatting and laughing, but now they
      have got used to it. We don't get criticised any more."


      Close watch on banned sect - 23 Sep 03

      Relevant authorities in Brunei will continue to keep a close watch on
      any religious deviationist movement, including the banned Al-Arqam*)
      group in the country.
      The relevant authorities, including the Akidah and Syariah Control
      Unit, a kind of religious police tasked to safeguard the eminence and
      purity of the Islamic faith, are however keeping a close watch on any
      telltale sign of the existence of these undesirable elements.
      Malaysia is reportedly taking the opportunity to seek cooperation from
      member countries of MABIMS, including the Islamic leaders from
      Thailand and the Philippines to curb an attempt banned Al-Arqam group
      to revive the Malaysian-grown religious movement.
      Brunei, a strong proponent of the Ahli Sunnah Wal Jemaah is
      particularly very strict on monitoring such kind of religious
      *) Ethnicity And Religious Issues: Experiences from Brunei Darussalam
      In fact Brunei Darussalam was the first country in the region to ban
      the spread of 'Jemaah Al-Arqam' which originated in Malaysia. The
      teaching of 'Jemaah Al-Arqam' clearly created conflict and
      confrontation within the family members on what actually is the real
      teachings of Islam. According to the Kadhi Court and Islamic
      Religious Council Enactment, those who teach or conduct activities
      against the teachings of Islam in public would face a fine of B$2000
      [EUR 1.000,-] or three months imprisonment. In an effort to curb
      undesirable public lectures or illegal religious activities, a free
      lance religious missionary (Pendakwah Bebas) must first get approval
      from the Islamic Religious Council before being allowed to preach or
      organize religious activities.
      Al-Arqam Controversy - 03 Aug 94


      Muslim student's expulsion prompts human-rights probe - 23 Sep 03

      The Quebec Human Rights Commission said Tuesday it has launched an
      investigation after a private school expelled a 16-year-old Muslim
      student who refused to remove her Islamic head scarf. The commission
      says it's not yet clear whether Charlemagne College's expulsion of
      Irene Waseem, 16, violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Waseem
      was barred from the secular private school on Sept. 2 after she showed
      up wearing the scarf, called a hijab. She had chosen not to wear the
      hijab to school in previous years. Waseem was told the scarf violated
      the west-end school's dress code.
      The commission will decide whether the right to religious expression
      overrides the right of private schools to impose a dress code. The
      commission ruled in 1995 that public-school dress codes which ban the
      hijab violate the charter. But l'Heureux said private schools may not
      be similarly bound. "The charter opens a door to the idea that (some)
      associations can adopt certain regulations that would otherwise be
      discriminatory," said l'Heureux.

      Toronto Shariah Program - Brothers Program / Sister's Program
      http://www.shariahprogram.ca/ - 19 Sep 03
      The Toronto Shariah Program offers, for the first time in North
      America, a traditional course of instruction in the Shariah sciences
      aimed at English speakers. Using classical texts in their original
      Arabic, and based on the proven Dars Nizaamie curriculum in use at
      madrassas worldwide, the 5 year course is aimed at anybody desiring an
      in-depth introduction to the Shariah which will allow them to practice
      their deen correctly and open the doors to more advanced study.
      Although the language of instruction is English, the texts employed
      are all studied in their original Arabic. Thus the emphasis in the
      initial 5 months is on mastering the fundamentals of Arabic grammer,
      morphology and vocabulary that is needed to understand the texts. Only
      then does the course move on to the Fiqh, Aqidah, Hadith, Tafseer and
      other Shariah sciences.
      http://www.shariahprogram.ca/outline.html - 01 Sep 03
      The Part-Time Course in Uloom ash Shariah (PTCUS) is designed to make
      available .. the content of the world famous Dars Nizaamie course
      operating in thousands of madrasahs world wide.


      China set to crack down on Muslim northwest - 24 Sep 03

      China's Uighur Muslims Feel Alienated - 28 Sep 03


      A few years ago, a brief nude scene in "American Beauty"...- 28 Sep 03
      A few years ago, a brief nude scene in "American Beauty" that made it
      past Egypt's censors prompted some moviegoers to stand up and shout in
      protest. So theater owners cut the scene themselves. With Egyptians
      becoming increasingly religious - and socially conservative - it's not
      just government officials who see censorship as necessary. Even some
      artists, who traditionally bemoan infringements on their creativity,
      say censorship may be the only way to cope with conservative Islam.
      What happens here has far-reaching repercussions. Egypt is home to the
      Middle East's biggest film industry and countries all over the region
      show Egyptian movies and TV shows. It's not just sexual themes that
      draw attention. In June, censors banned the international hit "The
      Matrix Reloaded," saying it questions the nature of God. The movie's
      setting in a fictional place known as Zion may have been a factor, too
      - the first Matrix film was shown in Egypt but was criticized by some
      Islamic newspapers that claimed it espoused Zionism. The Arab
      confrontation with Israel often is portrayed as a moral issue by
      Islamic conservatives. A passing reference to Israel was snipped from
      Mel Gibson's "What Women Want."
      Egypt's censors - and its people - were not always so uptight. In the
      1960s and '70s, movies shot here were much more daring, often
      featuring scantily clad women and more overt references to sex.
      "Until around 1975 there was a high degree of freedom," said Ali Abu
      Shadi, former head of the Egyptian Censorship Board. "But then
      religious fundamentalism set in ... and things really have not changed
      much since then. In the back of every censor's mind is society. The
      state itself seems to be unable to deal with society right now. The
      level of conservatism is very high."
      In this climate, Egyptian newspapers have been quick to criticize
      overt sensuality and intimacy in movies, with columnists and critics
      castigating actresses who dare to appear on screen in bikinis and
      other attire that challenge Islam's requirement of female modesty.
      The result has been many moviemakers avoiding risque material and
      producing what has become known as "clean cinema." Foreign movies are
      readily available uncut on satellite TV, over the Internet or as
      bootleg videos or DVDs on the streets of Cairo. But few Egyptians can
      afford them.


      Veil Saga Still Refuses to Die [The Independent - Banjul]
      http://allafrica.com/stories/200309191091.html - 19 Sep 03
      Students of The Gambia Senior Secondary School who are at the heart of
      the veil controversy earlier this week stormed the offices of The
      Independent, saying the school's authorities are threatening them with
      expulsion if they ever enter the school ground dressed in veils. The
      students who appear both jittery and angry, said that this was a case
      of discrimination and injustice, which needed to be addressed before
      the school year begins in earnest.

      The school authorities referred the students to pronouncements by
      President Jammeh, which they said put pay to the long running
      controversy over the veil. The president had declared in a July
      statement that the veil should not be worn in school. In a later
      pronouncement to religious leaders at State House, Jammeh had changed
      tack, saying that the veil cannot be worn in Christian mission


      Muslim Teacher Wins Headscarf Case - 25 Sep 03
      Muslim women in Germany have had a legal win after the country's
      highest court ruled that a female teacher has the right to wear a
      traditional headscarf at school. School authorities in Stuttgart had
      barred Afghan-born Freshta Ludin from a teaching job in 1998.
      However, the Constitutional Court on Thursday found that wearing a
      hijab in the classroom, would not violate laws requiring religious
      However, the court pointed out that individual states may pass new
      laws to outlaw religious dress in public schools. .. The Central
      Council of Muslims in Germany - which represents more than 3-million
      Muslims - blasted the decision as opening the door for states to issue
      blanket bans on teachers wearing headscarves.
      Ludin's case was the second the constitutional court has handled in as
      many months. In August, it ruled that Muslim shop assistants could not
      be fired for wearing a headscarf, despite managers' complaints that
      they put off customers.


      [Andhra Pradesh] A fatwa for women, by women - 28 Sep 03
      Dar-ul-Iftah, a collegium of muftias (women muftis or religious
      teachers) [jurisconsults] formed for the first time in the country in
      Hyderabad this week, has issued a fatwa, stating that patronising
      beauty parlours is un-Islamic. They declared that while the Shariat
      permits women to wear make-up to look beautiful, it does not allow
      them to remove hair by waxing or bleaching and wear men's clothes or
      coloured contact lenses. They issued the fatwa after a woman, Juveria
      Fathima, sought their "guidance" on fashion trends.
      The muftias, armed with a reference library and a PC with Internet
      access, are available for consultation two hours a day. They can also
      be reached on www.jamiatul-mominath.com, an Urdu website what will be
      up soon. Queries are trickling in. A young woman wants to know if she
      can cut her nails during her periods. Another wants to know if Islam
      permits test-tube babies.
      But can they enforce fatwas? Replies a muftia: "We give guidance and
      it's up to people to implement it. This is not an Islamic country,
      where violation of a fatwa invites reprisals. Allah will punish them
      for their sins."


      Iran to stop executions of 15-18 year-olds-reports - 28 Sep 03
      Iran's judiciary has drafted a bill which would raise the minimum age
      for death sentences to 18 from 15, newspapers reported on Sunday. The
      proposed bill, which will be sent shortly to parliament, also excludes
      under-18s from receiving life jail terms or lashes, newspapers quoted
      Alireza Jamshidi, secretary of the Supreme Council for Judicial
      An Iranian newspaper reported last year that Tehran had stopped the
      use of stoning as a form of capital punishment, in an apparent bid to
      ease European Union concerns over human rights in Iran and to
      facilitate talks on a trade deal.


      US troops face discipline for bloody flag incident in Baghdad - 26 Sep
      US soldiers are facing disciplinary action for an incident last month
      when a helicopter tried to remove a religious flag here and triggered
      a clash that left an Iraqi dead, the US military said Friday. A
      statement issued in reply to a query by AFP said an investigation into
      the August 13 incident in a predominantly Shiite neighborhood of
      Baghdad concluded that "poor judgment was employed by those soldiers
      implicated in the action."

      American-sponsored group discusses new Iraqi constitution in Bahrain
      http://www.gulfnews.com/Articles/news.asp?ArticleID=98233 - 22 Sep 03
      The Iraqi group included judges, lawyers and representatives of
      several non-governmental organisations, he said. In addition to
      officials from the ABA [American Bar Association] and the embassy,
      legal experts from Germany and Austria also took part in the
      discussion, Al Shibli said. A statement issued by the US Embassy said
      the participants were not playing an official role nor did they engage
      in drafting an Iraqi constitution.
      He said the participants in the meeting have "anonymously" agreed that
      the constitution would stipulate that Islam is the "state religion"
      and that the Islamic Sharia is "a main source of legislating."

      Najaf's Spirituality Gives Way to Strife - 22 Sep 03
      For more than a week afterward [the car bombing], Najaf appeared to
      teeter on the brink of civil strife. Hundreds of armed militiamen from
      rival Shiite factions took over the city, manning checkpoints and
      patrolling the streets. They attacked suspected members of Saddam's
      Baath party and Sunni extremists. That convinced U.S. officials to
      help create the new police force - the only one of its kind in Iraq -
      with members picked by local tribal leaders to maintain law and order
      in and around the shrine.


      Constitutional Review - Kadhis' courts retained in draft - 23 Sep 03
      Delegates defeated a motion seeking to remove the proposal to protect
      kadhis' courts in the draft constitution. Members of the Judiciary
      committee voted to retain the courts in the draft after a heated


      Going after promoters of get-rich-quick scams - 23 Sep 03
      A Bill aimed at penalising the promoters of get-rich-quick schemes
      will be tabled in Parliament soon and once passed, would help protect
      the interest of consumers. Domestic Trade and Consu-mer Affairs
      parliamentary secretary Wong Kam Hoong said the Government was
      concerned about consumers falling victims to such scams.
      He was commenting on Cheras MP Tan Kok Wai's statement in a Chinese
      daily over the re-issuing of the licence of a company promoting a
      pyramid sales system. He said the new management of the company had
      asked the Government to allow it to continue its operations to repay
      customers who have invested in the company.

      Wong said that the Government was aware that direct selling companies
      were a major contributor to the economy and had encouraged these
      companies and given tax exemptions to some who export their products,
      especially halal goods to Indonesia and the middle-east countries.
      "There were more than 1,300 companies operating under the pyramid
      sales system. However we have got rid of those who have deviated and
      have reduced it to about 400," he added.

      Proposal for prenuptial courses for non-Muslims - 23 Sep 03
      The Government will study whether to make it compulsory for non-Muslim
      couples to attend courses before allowing them to register their
      "New provisions in the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976,
      which regulates non-Muslims marriages, also need to be included,"
      [Women and Family Development Ministry Parliamentary Secretary Datuk
      Mastika Junaidah Husin] said at the Parliament lobby. Mastika said it
      was already a must for Muslim couples to attend courses before their
      marriages could be solemnised.

      "Islam is a State matter and the religious authorities make it
      prerequisite for couples to attend such programme." Earlier during a
      question-and-answer session, Mastika told the House that there were
      3,793 divorce cases among non-Muslims last year, up from 1,613 cases
      in 2000. Among the Muslims, she said the number of divorces were
      11,004 last year, down from 13,536 cases in 2000.

      Kelantan's move to prevent the exploitation of women in advertising
      .. - 24 Sep 03
      Malaysia's Kelantan state has introduced a new ruling effective next
      year, that bans women from being depicted on billboards and TV
      commercials. Parti Islam SeMalaysia, or PAS, the fundamentalist
      Islamic party that rules Kelantan, has said that the reason for the
      move is to prevent the exploitation of women in advertising.
      The latest ruling, described by the state opposition Umno party as
      'rubbish', replaces a decree by the Kota Baru Municipal Council last
      year that made it compulsory for billboards to show only women who
      wore headscarves.
      The rules will also apply to cinema advertisements, with the new
      guidelines specifying that only text can be used in any form of
      advertisement, apparently to prevent women from being shown.
      For small advertising posters, such as beer ads sometimes seen in
      Chinese restaurants, specific guidelines have been introduced which
      prevent the display of women in tight or thin clothing, or women with
      their thighs or hands exposed. Pictures of women standing next to men
      are also out.
      However, he added the rules would not prevent women from being
      depicted in advertisements that promote family values and culture.

      [Kelantan] Admit error, Pas leaders urged - 25 Sep 03
      .. [New Straits Times]
      PAS leaders must admit that the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Enactment 11
      is defective because there is no provision to act against husbands who
      sodomise their wives. Parliamentary Secretary in the Prime Minister's
      Department Datuk Noh Omar said Pas MPs were now claiming that the
      State could rely on the Syariah Criminal Enactment 1, which was passed
      in 1985 when the Barisan Nasional was in power. "Pas criticised the
      old law when it was in the Opposition. Now their leaders claim any
      shortcomings in the new law can be cured by relying on the 1985
      legislation," he said at the lobby.

      Terengganu to gazette hudud law next month - 27 Sep 03
      The Terengganu Syariah Criminal Enactment (Hudud and Qisas) will be
      gazetted next month and enforced immediately, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri
      Abdul Hadi Awang said Friday.
      He said the state government was restructuring the courts, including
      making new appointments and giving training to syariah judges in
      foreign countries on the implementation of the enactment.
      On the enforcement aspect, Hadi said the police would be vested with
      the powers to investigate and assist the People's Consultative
      Committee in carrying out operations.
      Whipping, stoning, amputation - Terengganu to go ahead - 28 Sep 03
      Datuk Abdul Hadi reminded Muslim journalists pointedly that it would
      be a sin to spread negative remarks about the laws, the New Straits
      Times reported. 'Going against the law is like criticising the true
      teachings of Islam,' he said.


      Court seeks death penalty for two extremist Muslim preachers
      .. - 24 Sep 03
      The state prosecutor at the trial of two Muslim preachers implicated
      in the deadly May suicide bombings in Casablanca demanded the death
      sentence early Wednesday for the defendants, calling them the
      "brains'' behind the attacks. Hassan Kettani and Abdelwaheb Rafiki,
      also known as Abu Hafs, have been portrayed during the trial as
      ideologists of the Salafiya Jihadia, a clandestine Muslim extremist
      movement which the Interior Ministry says has "organizational links''
      to the al Qaida terror network.
      The defendants were on trial on a series of charges, including
      attacking state security, inciting hate and violence, constituting a
      criminal band and acts of sabotage. Defense lawyers abruptly bowed out
      of the case on Tuesday, claiming the prosecution had failed to show
      material evidence linking the defendants' with the suicide bombings
      and considering the trial a charade.
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/3143688.stm - 26 Sep 03
      a court has given long jail sentences to two men described as
      "theoreticians" of the Islamist group, Salafia Jihadia, which has been
      blamed for the May bombings.
      Salafi Jihad http://rantburg.com/thugburg/dOrg.asp?ID=125


      [Bauchi] Sharia Court Sentences Man to Death By Stoning - 25 Sep 03
      http://allafrica.com/stories/200309250804.html [Daily Trust Abuja]
      A forty-three-year-old man, Jibrin Babaji has been sentenced to death
      by stoning, following his conviction by a Sharia court sitting in
      Bauchi for sodomy in contravention of section 133 of the Sharia penal
      code Bauchi, and chapter 11 verse 82 of the Holy Qur'an [and section
      354 of the Hadith]. The judge, Mallam Sani Jibrin Darazo while
      delivering the judgment explained that the conviction of Mallam Babaji
      was sequel to his acceptance of the offence by admitting publicly to
      the police and the court.
      After listening to the prosecution witnesses and asking the convict
      whether what was said was the truth, which he answered in the
      affirmative, the judge further asked him whether he was a Muslim and
      he also said yes. The judge then ruled that he was convinced that
      Babaji commited the offence since he accepted his guilt, and his
      confession was superior to any witnesses' testimony and ruled that he
      should be stoned to death.
      The judge sentenced the victims to six strokes of the cane each for
      accepting the N10 [7 EURO-cent] the convict had offered them, pointing
      out that all the convicts had a right to appeal within 30 days of the
      ruling. Mallam Babaji was the second man to be sentenced to death
      since Sharia legal system was introduced in Bauchi State two years
      ago. The first was a Mallam Rafin Kiyawa who was sentence to death by
      stoning following his conviction for eloping with a married woman in
      Ningi town.

      [Bauchi] Sharia Commission Moves to Decongest Prisons - 22 Sep 03
      Chairman, Bauchi State Sharia Commission, Alhaji Mukhtar Ahmed, has
      disclosed that the commission was working out modalities that would
      help decongest prisons in the state soon. Ahmed, .. said that the
      commission had concluded arrangements to hold dialogue and
      consultation with judges, magistrates and sharia court judges as well
      as stakeholders with the aim of releasing some inmates who were on the
      awaiting trial list.

      According to him, "efforts would also be made to free inmates who were
      unjustly detained and those with good character who are about
      completing their prison terms," stressing that "we are working out
      modalities to decongest prisons in the state." He stressed that
      prisons were supposed to serve as reform homes but, however, regretted
      that "due to their deplorable condition, they have become breeding
      ground for hardened criminals."

      In his speech, the state Controller of Prisons, Mr J. P. Joshua, said
      the number of inmates awaiting trial, almost doubled those that had
      been convicted, and therefore, enjoined the authorities to address the

      [Kaduna] Police Keep Vigil on ABU Campus - 29 Sep 03
      The Kaduna State Police Command has deployed a detachment of anti-riot
      policemen to the Samaru main campus of the Ahmadu Bello University
      (ABU), Zaria following an aborted religious conflict in the school on
      Tuesday. THISDAY checks in Zaria indicated that two female students
      had engaged in a discussion over religion when one of them (a
      Christian) allegedly uttered words said to be uncomplimentary to
      Islam. According to eye-witness accounts, the news had spread like
      wild fire with the muslim community in the school protesting the
      alleged blasphemy.

      However, it took the intervention of the Kaduna State Governor, Alhaji
      Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi, to restore order. Makarfi, along with the Emir
      of Zazzau, Dr Shehu Idris as well as the Commissioner of Police (CP),
      Mohammed Yesufu, had to pay an unscheduled visit to the school, to
      calm the students. Confirming the incident in his office in Kaduna,
      the CP said, "we were able to avert another religious crisis in Zaria.
      Thing have normalised now and I have deployed policemen to the school
      and environs."

      [Katsina] Sharia Court Frees Amina Lawal - 26 Sep 03
      http://allafrica.com/stories/200309260210.html [Daily Trust - Abuja]
      In upholding Amina's appeal, the four Khadis, whose (majority)
      decision was read by Honourable Khadi Ibrahim Mai'unguwa Umar, agreed
      with her counsel who faulted the judgement of the two lower courts on
      the three grounds of: withdrawal of confession by accused; illegality
      of the trial by only one Khadi at the Bakori Sharia Court and the
      problem of delayed pregnancy (Kwantacchen ciki) suffered by the

      The majority decision of the Sharia Court of Appeal supported the
      argument of the Aliyu Musa Yauri led team of Amina's lawyers that the
      Bakori Sharia Court, in accepting her confession, did not give her a
      chance to consider the implication of her confession and that the
      court ought to have considered her withdrawal of the confession.

      They also faulted the judgements of the Bakori Sharia court and the
      Funtua Upper Sharia court on the ground that only one Khadi tried the
      case at the lower court without the assistance of at least two other
      Khadis as provided by the Katsina State Sharia law.

      They also agreed with Amina's counsel that the lower courts in Bakori
      and Funtua failed to take into account the problem of delayed
      pregnancy suffered by Amina, who was divorced two years before the
      pregnancy and the fact that the Islamic legal system recognised that
      it was still possible for a woman to give birth for the husband she
      left even five years after being divorced.

      Quoting copiously from the Holy Qur'an and the Hadith (sayings of the
      Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.O.H.) as well as the Sharia law of Katsina
      State, Khadi Mai'unguwa Umar, who described the case as a problematic
      one also faulted the prosecution for its inability to prove its case
      convincingly. He questioned why the police who reported the illicit
      sexual liaison between Amina and Yahaya Mohammed (who denied the
      allegation) did not report the matter until 11 months after even
      though they claimed to know about the affair all along.

      But in his minority report, the dissenting judge, Khadi Sule Sada
      Kofar Sauri dismissed the appeal of Amina against the sentence of
      death passed on her by the Bakori Sharia court and upheld by the
      Funtua Upper Court on the grounds that up to two grounds for
      conviction were fully established when only one of three grounds was
      sufficient. He argued that Amina's wilful confession of committing
      the illicit sexual act with Yahaya Mohammed and the fact of the
      pregnancy and the subsequent delivery of a baby girl (now 20 months
      old) were sufficient grounds to condemn Amina to death by stoning
      (Haddi) even without the support of the evidence of three eye
      witnesses to the commitment of the act.

      Amina Lawal : Sex, Pregnacy and Muslim Law By Sanusi Lamido Sanusi
      * Hudood punishements in northern Nigeria A Muslim Criticism by Sanusi
      [Photo] Alhaji Aminu Katsina (R), the Grand Kadi and top Islamic legal
      authority in Katsina state leads the way with other Kadis towards the
      courtroom of the Katsina State Sharia Court.

      Sharia still wrenches Nigeria - 29 Sep 03
      In elections held earlier this year and undermined by allegations of
      widespread ballot-rigging, Olusegun Obasanjo, the reelected president,
      scored heavily in the country's south but saw his share of the vote
      dip below 25 percent in several sharia states. His Peoples Democratic
      Party lost the governorship of the northern heartland state of Kano to
      Ibrahim Shekarau of the All Nigeria People's party, who is seen as an
      enthusiast for strict Islamic law. The governors' emphasis on sharia
      and law-and-order issues has a street-level appeal in a country
      suffering from mass poverty, entrenched corruption, and a federal
      judicial system notorious for its slowness and unfairness.
      In the minds of many observers, the new sharia punishments are seen as
      particularly stark and brutal manifestations of the huge inequalities
      and abuses of power that exist throughout Nigerian society.


      Federal Shariat Court dismisses appeal - 23 Sep 03
      A three-member bench of Federal Shariat Court, comprising Chief
      Justice Chuadhary Aijaz Yousuf, Justice Dr Fida Muhammad Khan and
      Justice Saeedur Rehman Farrukh, dismissed appeal of Amjad Pervez in
      dacoity [gang robbery] case and converted Hudood sentence into 10
      years rigorous imprisonment (RI).

      The appellant had been punished with imputation of right hand from
      wrist and left foot from ankle under section 17(3) EOH 1979 by
      additional district and session judge on charge of committing dacoity
      on March 3, 2003. .. The court while dismissing the appeal converted
      Hudood sentence into Tazir under section 397 Pakistan Penal Code and
      sentenced appellant to 10 years RI.

      [Northern Areas] Gilgit: Students block Karakoram highway - 27 Sep 03
      Hundreds of students and teachers belonging to different Madaris in
      Diamer district blocked the Karakoram Highway on Thursday at Thour
      Nalah against the construction of Diamer (Bhasha) dam , NGOs and
      proposed plan for change in the existing curriculum, police sources
      said on Friday. They said that over 500 students belonging to Sunni
      Madaris took out a rally in Thour Nallah, 200kms south of Gilgit, and
      blocked the Karakoram Highway for half an hour.

      The sources said the protesters were demanding to roll back the
      projects of International Fund for Agriculture Developlment (IFAD) and
      UNDP in Diamer which they termed haram (prohibited) to utilize their
      funds according to their school of thought. They also chanted slogans
      against the construction of Bhasha dam as the chairman of Water and
      Power Development Authority Lt Gen Zulfiqar Ali Khan (Rtd) arrived at
      the scene. The protesters contended that a large chunk of Diamer
      district would be inundated with the construction of Bhasha dam due to
      its upstream and its royalty would go to the people of NWFP.

      Judicial body discusses ways to clear cases - 28 Sep 03
      The meeting approved various measures to strengthen the capacity of
      courts, including an increase in the number of judges, the provision
      of necessary equipment, court staff and judicial reforms to speed up
      trials. .. It also considered a proposal put forward by the Ministry
      of Information and Technology to provide computers to district courts
      and district bar associations. It said district judiciary and members
      of the bars would be offered free Internet service to compile judicial
      data in a digital format.


      Permission to narrate: Edward Said, Palestine, and the Internet
      http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article1975.shtml - 26 Sep 03


      Indians help compatriot pay blood money to Afghan's kin - 25 Sep 03
      Murugan Mani, an Indian expatriate who was charged by the Shariah
      Court for his involvement in the accidental death of an Afghan worker
      early last year, has paid the blood money of QR100,000 [EUR 24.000] to
      the relatives of the deceased. Murugan, a Tamilian, and the deceased,
      Sangi Gul Ilm Gul, are employed by the Sky Trading and Contracting
      Company in Qatar. The court had set September 15 as the deadline for
      paying the blood money. The Qatar Tamizhar Sangham (QTS), an
      organisation of expatriates from India's Tamil Nadu state, had
      launched a campaign to raise donations for Murugan. A special account
      was opened at the Qatar Islamic Bank to collect donations.


      [Photo] Demonstration for Amina Lawal - 18 Sep 03
      Members of the African National Congress Women's League protest in
      Pretoria, South Africa, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2003. The women are
      calling for the South African government to intervene to save Nigerian
      Amina Lawal, on poster, top left and right, who is sentenced to die by
      stoning for adultery. The Sharia Court of Appeal in Katsina, Nigeria,
      is expected to announce its verdict next week.


      Sri Lankan Muslims To Fight For Their Rights - 26 Sep 03


      Swedish TV says YES to Islamic veil - 22 Sep 03
      A Muslim veiled woman has been successfully able to work as a TV
      announcer in Sweden and appear in her Islamic clothing before millions
      without fearing discrimination or harassment of any sort, such as what
      Egyptian announcers are currently going through. This followed the
      official Swedish TV decision that has been taken recently to the
      effect that Sweden respects cultures and religions and that religious
      freedom is guaranteed to all under the Swedish law.
      Nadia Gabriel, a Swedish woman of Palestinian origin, worked on
      Swedish TV with the "Mosaic" program team, which focuses on issues of
      expatriates living in the Swedish community. Gabriel had fought for
      her right to wear the traditional hijab, and eventually, the young
      woman got what she wanted.
      According to Swedish laws, any veiled woman, who is exposed to any
      racial or religious discrimination due to her veil, shall have the
      right to sue her employer who treated her badly because of it. It
      should be noted, in addition, that Swedish and non-Swedish women have
      the right to get official passports and identity cards, without having
      to remove their veils, as all government levels accept veiled women in
      Sweden without any problems.


      CIA paid mullahs to spread moderate message, says book - 23 Sep 03
      The CIA paid mullahs and created fake Islamic religious leaders to
      preach a moderate message and counter anti-American sentiment in the
      Arab world after the September 11 attacks, a new book said on Monday.
      In 'The CIA at War', Ronald Kessler, an investigative reporter and
      author of several books about the CIA and the FBI, also detailed
      espionage activity in Iraq that supported the March invasion that
      toppled President Saddam Hussein.
      "In Islam, as in many other religions, anyone can call himself a
      religious leader," he said in the book. "So, besides paying mullahs,
      the CIA created fake mullahs -- recruited agents who would proclaim
      themselves clerics and take a more moderate position about non
      believers." "We are taking over radio stations and supporting
      clerics," a CIA source was quoted as saying. "It's back to propaganda.
      We are creating moderate Muslims." Kessler said the CIA also paid for
      mullahs to issue fatwas, or religious edicts, urging Iraqis not to
      resist American forces. He did not specify the countries this took
      place in.
      Kessler said the CIA used operatives from intelligence services in
      Arab countries including Jordan, Syria, and Egypt to infiltrate Al
      Qaeda, develop intelligence, but also sow suspicion so members of the
      network would kill each other, the book said. Al Qaeda was blamed for
      the attacks.

      Arrest prompts new request for probe of clerics - 23 Sep 03
      Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., Monday renewed his request for an
      investigation into two institutes that train Islamic chaplains for the
      military in light of the Sept. 10 arrest of Army Capt. James "Yousef"
      Yee, an imam who ministered to detainees held at the U.S. Navy base in
      Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Six months ago, Schumer asked the Pentagon to
      launch an internal review of the way the military determines the
      reliability of Muslim clerics in the armed services, but so far no
      such effort has been undertaken, officials said Monday.

      Two Pakistani American sisters making waves - 25 Sep 03
      A young Pakistani-American woman is making waves with the opening
      earlier this month of her play 'Barriers' in San Francisco after a
      successful run in New York. Rehana Mirza's play is about the 9/11
      tragedy and how it affected the lives of Muslims in America. She says
      her play's themes – grief and loss and how families deal with them –
      go beyond the events of September 11. Her sister Rohi Mirza is the
      play's producer.

      Barbie given a run for her money - 25 Sep 03
      At first glance, this new girl on the block wouldn't give Barbie much
      of a run for her money. After all, Barbie is everything Razanne is not
      - curvaceous, flashy and loaded with sex appeal. But that's exactly
      why many Muslim Americans prefer the newer doll. With her long-sleeved
      dresses, hijab or Muslim head scarf and, by her creator Ammar Saadeh's
      own admission, a less-than-flattering bust-line, Razanne is all about
      modesty and piety.
      The Michigan-based company, founded about seven years ago, sells the
      Razanne doll and a number of other toys geared toward Muslim children.
      While barbie has a curvaceous figure, Razanne was designed with the
      body of a preteen. Her aspirations are those of a modern Muslim woman.
      On the drawing board for future dolls are Dr Razanne and possibly even
      astronaut Razanne. There's also Muslim Girl Scout Razanne, complete
      with a cassette recording of the Muslim Scout's oath.
      Laila, the Arab League's answer to Barbie, offered girls of the
      league's 22-member states a culturally acceptable alternative to
      Barbie's lifestyle. But she never made it to store shelves. Sara and
      Dara were launched a couple of years ago - Iran's version of Barbie
      and her beau, Ken. The two were offshoots of a children's cartoon in
      Iran. But Saadeh said those dolls are more "cultural and don't have
      mass appeal in the Middle East."

      In the United States, Mattel, which makes Barbie, markets a Moroccan
      Barbie and sells a collector's piece named Leyla in the Girls From
      Around the World collection. Leyla's elaborate costume and tale of
      being taken as a slave in the court of a Turkish sultan are intended
      to convey the trials and tribulations of one Muslim girl in the 1720s.
      Razanne's launch five years ago met with success, Saadeh said. While
      declining to give specific sales figures, he said the doll is marketed
      and sold throughout the United States, Canada, Singapore and Germany
      and soon will be sold in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab
      Emirates and Bahrain.


      Controversial Fatwa Seeks Easier Life For Muslim Lovers - 18 Sep 03
      The fatwa in effect gives young Muslims living in Europe and the
      United States the option of a boyfriend and girlfriend living under
      the same roof as a married couple.

      Sheikh Abdul-Majeed Al-Zindani, head of the al-Eman religious
      university in Yemen, and head of the Shura (consultation council) of
      the Islamic party Islah, says his fatwa comes in response to a call
      from Arab communities living in the West who are seeing their children
      adopt a "boyfriend and girlfriend" culture.

      The fatwa means a young Muslim going out with another can marry, but
      continue to stay with their parents. They can, of course, meet freely.

      Under Islamic requirements, an unmarried woman is not allowed to be
      alone with a man who is not her father, grandfather, brother or uncle.
      "Why don't we make 'married friends' instead of 'girlfriends' and
      'boyfriends'," al-Zindani says in his fatwa. The present conditions
      for Muslims living in the West are "unpleasant", he said, because they
      find it difficult to hold strictly to their religion and traditions.
      Clerics at al-Azhar have strongly condemned the fatwa. "Through the
      issuance of such a fatwa, al-Zindani is calling for the enjoyment of
      all the benefits of marriage according to Shariah, but in a temporary
      form," says Dr Abdul-Sabour Shahin from al-Azhar. He accuses
      al-Zindani of failing to finish his studies at al- Azhar. Dr Nasser
      Farid Wasel, the former head mufti in Egypt said al-Zindani's fatwah
      is illegitimate. "Allah legalises marriage for humans as a solid and
      sacred relationship between man and woman, a relationship that is
      based on stable and perpetual love and mercy," he said.

      "The Islamic Shariah law is comprehensive, timeless and universal," he
      said, "and so it has no exceptions whatsoever, and a Muslim must not
      abandon Islamic teachings whenever and wherever he or she might be.
      Such a marriage would lead to demoralisation, the mixing up of
      kinship, infringing on the Shariah and committing immoral crimes and

      Al-Zindani defended his fatwa against such charges. "The fatwa aims at
      saving progeny and keeping oneself away from sins," he said at a press
      conference. "Moreover it is an initiative to solve a critical and
      ethical problem facing Muslims in America and Europe." The fatwa is
      based on the regular pillars of marriage, he said, namely two
      witnesses, a marriage contract and agreed dowry. "It is for the period
      of unavailability of a residence, which is temporary, until the
      husband is ready to maintain a new home," he said.
      Many see this as a solution to the practice of secret marriages
      spreading in the Arab world. Secret marriages are considered
      un-Islamic, and do not guarantee women's rights as provided by Islam.
      A man could walk out on his wife and the wife could hardly go to court
      because the marriage itself would be considered illegal.
      Those who have married like this blame parents for making huge money
      demands a precondition to marriage. "Society and family say secret
      marriages are against Islamic rules," says Adel Abdulmalik, 32 and
      single. "Yes, they are, but they never admit that they make marriages
      so expensive. That also is against Islamic rules."

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      distributed without profit for research and educational purposes. If
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