(EGYPT) Fears that #IslamicState once again threatens the lives of some of the Middle East’s largest Christian population have emerged again, after the radical militant group killed an Coptic businessman who’d funded the construction of the only church in his north Sinai village #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – May.07: Salama was ambushed, then abducted at gunpoint in a hijacked vehicle on the eve of 7 Nov, 2020 as he was on the street for a local errand in his village Bir-al-Abd. In the scuffle, as Nabil tried to fight off his three armed, unmasked attackers, he dropped his mobile phone. It was later retrieved by passers-by and returned to his family. This small detail has some significance, as reported below.

EGYPT: Death threats, by #IslamicState in Sinai, against Egyptian Copt sons who mourn dad: The death of 62 year old Nabil Habashy Salama was reported last week, but new points are worth emphasis.

Nabil Habashi Salama, taken by unseen watchers; he was 'executed' by ISIS, March 2021
World Watch Monitor

Nabil Habashi Salama, taken by unseen watchers; he was ‘executed’ by ISIS, March 2021

Nabil had been splitting his time between the village and El-Arish, a city about 68 miles east along the Mediterranean coast towards the border with the Gaza strip.

Five days after his abduction, on 12 Nov, his son Peter received a call from those holding his father. They allowed him to speak to Nabil, but said they needed 2 million Egyptian pounds (US $127,550 or GBP 91,2000) – not as hostage ransom but as a ‘jizya’ tax from the remaining Copts in the village – if they wanted to see Nabil return.

The kidnappers gave Peter 48 hours to collect the money. However, it then increased to 5 million Egyptian pounds (approximately US $321,000 or GBP 230,000) with an order that the Coptic Bishop, Cosman, would be given time to gather the money from all the local Christian families.

When, after some time, the kidnappers called him again, Peter said they had not been able to collect the amount of ‘jizya’ demanded. At this, the caller threatened that the group would kill Peter and his brother Fady, as well as their hostage father. Hearing this, the police asked the brothers to leave the local area, as they could not guarantee their safety.

On 1 January, shortly before Orthodox Christmas, under the stressful anxiety of fearing every day for their father’s life, the brothers now felt forced to leave everything behind and uproot their families to move.

Even then, there was another call: “We know where you are; we know everything about you”.

The last call came at the end of February “That was the last time I was able to speak to my Dad; we didn’t hear anymore after that” Peter told World Watch Monitor.

On Sunday 18 April , the day that Islamic State in Sinai posted the video – in which Habashy and two other Sinai tribesmen are killed – to its Telegram channel, the video was sent ‘at the first hour of dawn’ to the family, to their utter shock and horror. Again, threats against the two brothers’ lives accompanied it.

And those death threats have not stopped coming, even into this past week as the family grieved.  (Habashy also left a daughter Marina).

But one of the most disturbing aspects of the ‘announcement’ of the death of Nabil Habashy Salama is that it was often accompanied by a picture of him, apparently repairing the wall of his church building, a smile on his face. He looks pleased and content as he writes. At least one media outlet credits Nabil himself for the photo. But Peter had never seen it before – it did not belong to the family’s now-treasured collection of photos of their father. Peter told World Watch Monitor he believes the photo was taken by someone who’d been watching their Dad’s movements, perhaps even one of his kidnappers, if not killers. And for that reason, the family is acutely on edge, aware that the extremist militia who killed their dad have their phone number and continue to issue death threats.

‘Jizya’ tax on non-Muslims as protection money 

Under traditional Islamic lawjizya(h) is a tax per head paid by non-Muslimsonly to the authorities. According to Definition.net “From the point of view of Muslim rulers, jizya was…proof of the non-Muslims’ acceptance of subjection to the state and its laws. In return, non-Muslims were permitted to practice their faith, to enjoy a measure of communal autonomy, to be entitled to the Muslim state’s protection from outside aggression, and to be exempt from military service and the zakat taxes obligatory upon Muslims”.

When the jihadists captured Mosul and its surrounding plain in June 2014, they reinstated the traditional Islamic ultimatum to Christians: convert, pay jizya, leave or be killed. Since then, occasionally hard-line Muslim clerics have called for its re-imposition on Christians.

In 2012, Bishop Cosman said that, of about 4-500,000 people in his diocese of North Sinai – an area 200km long and 127km – there were only about 740 Christian families (c.3,000 individuals) so they were pretty scattered. To compare, over 2,000 Christian families then lived in the urban Cairo district of Hadayak al-Maadi.

In 2017, in just three weeks between January 30 and February 23, eight Coptic Christians were killed by Islamist militants. This prompted an exodus of about 350 families from El-Arish to other cities such as Port Said, Ismailia and even other parts of Egypt.

Father Youssef Sobhy, a priest at Saint Mary and St. Michael Coptic Orthodox Cathedral (the Archbishopric of North Sinai), told World Watch Monitor:

The majority of the Christian families fled El-Arish, after they felt they were targeted by those militants, their lives were in danger, and there wasn’t any protection for them. Police were focusing efforts on protecting the entry points to the city and police presence inside El-Arish is not as dense as it is around it.

In April 2017, the Islamic State affiliate took credit for twin suicide bombings that killed around 50 people at Coptic churches celebrating Palm Sunday in northern Egypt.

In addition to targeting Christians and state security forces, the insurgents in November 2017 opened fire on Sufi Muslims (who Islamic State believe to be heretical) be praying in a Bir al-Abd mosque, killing over 300.

However, the Egyptian army operation to regain security control across Northern Sinai has been very heavy-handed and even criticised by Human Rights Watch for human rights abuses. 
It says the military has effectively banned independent reporting from North Sinai and has prosecuted and imprisoned several journalists who covered events there.

A Copt activist told WWM: “Accountability about the failure of security plans is an urgent necessity, and the protection of Copts is a social, moral and humanitarian responsibility. What Copts need today are actions without words and not promises without action.

These murders of Christians nowadays are an ongoing scheme amidst a media blackout and that is not separated from the previous murderous crimes against Copts for years. The deadly hands are one and the same.

Those perpetrators haven’t been punished for their previous crimes.Leaving with impunity Islamic extremists who target and kill Copts for their religious identification drives them and others to increase targeting of Copts and killing them for their faith in Jesus Christ. 

This continued failure to protect the Copts is not justified, especially after the imposition of the state of emergency, amendments to the laws of terrorist entities and criminal penalties and procedures.

Sobhy Samy Abdul Nour, ambushed and killed in N. Sinai, 3 Mar, 2021

Previous incidents when Christians were targeted in N. Sinai

3 March 2021: ISIS members stopped the car of Sobhy Samy Abdul Nour, 40, (from Jazeerat Masoud village, El Husseiniya, Sharqia Governorate), 500m from the police checkpoint in Balouza village at the entrance to the North Sinai Governorate. The extremists shot him dead as soon as they found out that he was a Christian, then seized his car, ID card and mobile and threw his body onto the road before fleeing.
His funeral was held at Saint Mark Coptic Orthodox Church in El Husseiniya city on 4 March 2021; he was buried in the family cemetery in Jazeerat Masoud village.

18 Jan, 2019: Armed militants kidnapped a 55 year old single man, Adeeb Nakhla Yassa, who was on a microbus on the coastal road to Arish city. Some 50 km west of the city, it was stopped by a group of armed men who boarded it and began checking the identity of the passengers, looking for police and military recruits or Christians. When they found out that Yassa was Christian, they ordered him to disembark and carried him off in a four-wheel drive vehicle. They let the bus continue its journey. Once the passengers reached their destination, they informed the police who in turn told Adeeb’s relatives.

May 2016. An employee in the Directorate of Health in North Sinai, Misak Nasrallah, was returning home on the workbus with colleagues. Masked men stopped the bus at gunpoint and asked if there was a Christian among the passengers. His Muslim colleagues asked the only Christian not to speak. They said ‘No, all of us are Muslims’. But Misak refused to deny Christ and said ‘Yes I’m a Christian’ showing them the cross on his right wrist. They took him out of the bus, said ‘You don’t deserve to live because you are Kaffir’ and shot him with 14 bullets, killing him instantly.

#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: May.07: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#christian, #coptic, #egypt, #islamic-state, #sinai

(NIGERIA) International Society for Civil Liberties & Rule of Law Group Report: Accuses Muslim leaders of abducting and forcibly converting Christian girls #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Apr.25: The chief culprits in the dastardly act, according to the rights group, are the Emir of Katsina and the Islamic District Head of Kafur in Kafur Local Government Area of the State, noting that this is according a statement issued on April 15, 2021 by the Hausa Christians Foundation (HACFO):

Nigeria: The Federal Government must sanction Katsina Islamic leaders for indiscriminate abduction and forceful conversion of scores of Hausa Christians, especially girls of underage, to Islam, the International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety) has said: “Emir of Katsina, others ‘abducting, forcefully converting Hausa Christian girls to Islam,’” News Express, April 19, 2021:

According to Intersociety in a statement by Emeka Umeagbalasi, Obianuju Igboeli, and Chidimma Evan Udegbunam, there has been indiscriminate abduction of scores of Hausa Christian girls and their forceful conversion to Islam. The abducted Hausa Christian girls, who are under the school age of 16, are also forced into early marriage done outside the consent of their parents, Intersociety said.

The statement also disclosed that the indigenous Hausa Christians and their communities in Katsina State “are made to go through hell by Islamic authorities and supposedly secular security agencies in the State just because they are Christians.” It named the affected Hausa Christian areas in Katsina State to include a mixed Christian-Muslim Community of Rafin Iyaka Sabuwar Kasa in Kafur Local Government Area and Christian Community of Gidan Dandadada Rafin Iyaka, among others.

The Hausa Christians Foundation had in a recent statement mentioned names of nine Hausa Christian girls and young women as having in recent times been abducted and forcefully converted to Islam and forced into early marriage by the named Islamic leaders.

Principally fingered are the duo of the District Head of Kafur (Alhaji Abdulrahman Rabe) and the Emir of Katsina (Abdulmumini Kabir Usman). The nine victims were named as Jamima Solomon, Christiana Mamman, Deborah Habila, Phoebe Dankano, Rifkatu Markus (rescued), Saratu Isah (was returned when she went mad after two years), Dije Yakubu Nalami (abducted as a married woman, and returned when she died), Rebeccah Ado (returned pregnant), and Aisha Mani (the latest abducted and converted and currently in captivity).

The statement also lamented that any time the Christian Community agitates against the injustice done to same, the Muslim youths will violently go after them, threatening to burn down their churches and houses….

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Apr.25: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#abduction, #christian, #nigeria

(NIGERIA) President Muhammadu Buhari Statement Report: Crisitises a bishop who was endorsed by Christian leaders who hope he can combat corruption and sectarian terrorism #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Apr.18: Buhari has failed miserably and astronomically. And he’s busy spending billions of naira (Nigerian currency) on senseless deradicalization programs that don’t work, while Christians continue to be murdered in a country that has been described as a “massive killing field.”

Nigeria: Government outraged as bishop criticizes its response to jihad terror: ‘Christians are undergoing a genocide in Nigeria, and it is Nigeria’s Muslim President Muhammadu Buhari who is playing politics. Christianity Today wrote with high hopes about him in 2015’

“Nigeria presidency accuses priest of partisan politics after criticism,” translated from “Nigéria : la présidence accuse un prêtre de faire de la politique partisane après des critiques,” by Rodrigue Gozoa, La Nouvelle Tribune, April 8, 2021:

Matthew Hassan Kukah is the current bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sokoto in northwestern Nigeria. He was ordained on December 19, 1976. He was previously Secretary General of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria and Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Kaduna until he was ordained bishop on September 8, 2011. A priest and political scientist, the prelate is regularly requested by the government authorities in place for numerous mediation and diplomacy missions. But this Sunday, on the occasion of the Christian Feast of Easter, Bishop Kukah gave a sermon that Mr. Buhari very much disliked.

“Inappropriate comments”

Bishop Kukah has participated in many presidential initiatives, such as the Commission of Inquiry into Human Rights Violations, the Electoral Reform Committee and the National Political Reform Conference. He was also the presidential facilitator who negotiated an end to hostilities between the Nigerian oil company Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria and the Ogoni people in the Delta region.

But also and because, according to the Nigerian press, the prelate’s qualities as mediator had been remarkable, Bishop Kukah was also asked to join a committee set up by the governors of the North to jointly examine the Boko Haram crisis, and consider appropriate solutions to apply. From this point of view, the prelate was therefore one of those in Nigeria who had a good knowledge of the “Boko Haram” problem and the corollary of insecurity that the terrorist threat had left in its wake.

But this Sunday, when the bishop in his homily for the Feast of the Resurrection of Christ said that “insecurity, in particular terrorism, had increased since President Buhari came to power in 2015,” the reaction of the Buhari administration was immediate. It was Mallam Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant for media and publicity, who in a statement issued in Abuja accused the cleric on behalf of the presidency of engaging in partisan politics.

According to Mr. Shehu, the prelate’s words were all the more out of place as they lacked the impartiality required by the cassock he wore. “If you claim to be a man of God, as Father Mathew Hassan Kukah does, ideology should not stand in the way of facts and fairness. (…) He (Msgr Kukah — editor’s note) practices partisan politics by lecturing the president. (…) We urge well-meaning citizens to continue supporting the administration’s ongoing efforts to secure the country and move it forward,” the presidential statement added in substance….

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Apr.18: 2021:

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#boko-haram, #christian, #jihadist, #nigeria

(HYDERABAD, India.) JUST IN: Christian woman expelled from village and threatened with death as villagers prevent her harvesting food for her family #AceNewsDesk report

Christian Mother Expelled from Village, Threatened with Death: HYDERABAD, IndiaMorning Star News reports that when villagers kept her from harvesting her fields because she had invited a Christian pastor to pray for the harvest, a tribal Adivasi mother in central India went to police thinking officers might help her’

Adivasi decorative figures from Chhattisgarh, India at Museum of Quai Branly in Paris, France. (Dalbera, Creative Commons)

Adivasi decorative figures from Chhattisgarh, India at Museum of Quai Branly in Paris, France. (Dalbera, Creative Commons)

Tribal woman kept from harvesting annual food supply: Instead, the police inspector at the Polampalli police station in Chhattisgarh state showed Kanni Barse a section of the Indian constitution, read a few lines from it and asked her if she understood it, she said.

“I replied, ‘No,’” Barse told Morning Star News. “Then he told me that the text from the constitution says that Adivasis cannot convert to Christianity, and that I have committed a huge mistake by adopting a foreign faith. He said that he should book cases against me.”

The Indian constitution guarantees religious freedom, and Barse said she told the officer that she had some education, her husband was a teacher and that she had never heard the text he cited.

“I asked him, ‘What about my life? There is a threat to my life,’” she said. “He said, ‘We can’t take the responsibility of protecting anybody’s life.’”

Three days later, she said, the inspector summoned Barse back to the police station, but when she arrived, she found the village elders and tribal animists surrounding it and did not dare try to enter.

“Afraid of what was happening, I called the inspector on the phone and told him that I will take the complaint back – it is enough if they would allow me to harvest the crop and work at the childcare center,” she said. “But the officer told me that the village elders said they want to fight this case.”

The tribal animist relatives who had expelled the Christian mother of four from her native Palamadugu village, in Sukma District, threatened to kill her if she returned, she said. The harvest was to feed the family for a year.

“It has been over two months now,” Barse said, tears in her eyes. “The oxen and birds have eaten the grain, and the crop has all got wasted.”

Death Threat

The attempt to obtain police help occurred in early January. Officers at Polampalli police station remained unavailable for comment despite several attempts to reach them.

“Since my husband and I had put faith in Christ because of health issues, we have been shunned by the villagers, who are our own kinsmen,” Barse said. “I worked very hard during the coronavirus lockdown to raise the crop. This field has been a primary source of income to feed my family of six.”

After inviting the pastor to bless the harvest fields, she said, her relatives reviled her in extremely derogatory language.

“They told me that they had been kind enough only to let me work in the fields to feed our stomachs, but they can’t tolerate Christian worship,” she said, “They made accusations that I had defiled the Adivasi land by bringing a pastor to conduct Christian prayer.”

Barse has worked at the rural childcare center teaching and caring for pre-school children for 20 years. She worked and lived in Palamadugu village, returning to her family in Dornapal village on weekends, until her relatives expelled her from the village in late December.

“They told me that they would chop me into bits and pieces if they see me again at the childcare center,” Barse told Morning Star News. “My sister’s family did not allow me to stay in Palamadugu and were forcing me to leave for Dornapal, where my husband and children reside.”

She asked her nieces to allow her to stay, as she desperately needed the income from her job in the village, she said. She used that income to pay for medical care of her husband, whose seizures have kept him mostly unemployed since 2007, and the needs of her children, ages 3, 6, 13 and 15.

“To our shock, we heard a knock in the middle of the night yelling my name,” Barse told Morning Star News. “Afraid that I will be killed if I stayed there any longer, my mother and sister insisted that I must leave the village.”

Kinsmen in Palamadugu arranged for Maoists known as Naxalites to kill an uncle and a brother for reasons unrelated to faith, and in February two other relatives were found murdered, she said.

“If they vow to kill, they will surely kill the person,” Barse said. “They are staunch, stone-hearted Adivasis.”

Struggling to Survive

When Barse delivered a hand-written complaint to police, she notified them that she and her husband had accepted Christianity in 2016, and that since then her husband’s health had steadily improved, she said.

“I requested the officers in Polampalli police station to not book any cases and only make my relatives understand that I have accepted Christian faith for my own personal reasons, and that I have nothing against their practices, but I should only be allowed to work and practice my faith,” Barse said.

A Chhattisgarh attorney allied with legal advocacy group Alliance Defending Freedom India advised her to apply with the district child development officer for a transfer to a post with the childcare center in another village since there is a threat to her life in Palamadugu, Barse said.

She submitted the request on Feb. 8, and on March 1 she inquired whether there was any decision.

“I was told that the officer was on vacation and would only go through my application after he assumes his duties,” she said.

Barse, 35, requested prayer for her family and job. A nearby school has allowed her husband to teach a few subjects that, because of the coronavirus pandemic, are carried out online.

“But the school management told us that they can’t continue it for very long because of his health issues, and that they do not want him to teach in a physical set-up, where children can get intimidated watching him suffer seizure attacks,” she said.

The hostile tone of the National Democratic Alliance government, led by the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, against non-Hindus, has emboldened Hindu extremists in several parts of the country to attack Christians since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in May 2014, religious rights advocates say.

India ranked 10th on Christian support organization Open Doors’ 2021 World Watch List of the countries where it is most difficult to be a Christian, as it was in 2020. The country was 31st in 2013, but its position worsened after Modi came to power.

If you would like to help persecuted Christians, visit https://morningstarnews.org/resources/aid-agencies/for a list of organizations that can orient you on how to get involved.  

###

© 2021 Morning Star News. Articles/photos may be reprinted with credit to Morning Star News. https://morningstarnews.org

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: Mar.11: 2021;

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by https://t.me/acenewsdaily and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#christian, #hyderabad, #india, #relgion

NEW YORK: ‘ HIGH SCHOOL LIFTS BAN ON STUDENT CHRISTIAN CLUB AMID THREAT OF LEGAL ACTION ‘

#AceNewsServices – UNITED STATES (New York) – October 16 – A New York high school has lifted its ban on a Christian student organization after first rejecting the students’ request for renewal.

Students at Ward Melville High School of Three Village Central School District in East Setauket, New York.Screenshot from 2014-10-16 14:54:15

Ward Melville High School of East Setauket decided late last week to renew the group Students United in Faith after receiving a letter from the Liberty Institute, a conservative law firm.

Last year, administrators at the school denied SUIF recognition under the charge that the student organization lacked sufficient numbers of interested persons to garner recognition.

“We are hoping that the school doesn’t make this an annual tradition of violating the Equal Access Act,” said Hiram Sasser, Liberty Institute’s director of strategic litigation, in a statement to The Christian Post.

“Congress can pass laws and the courts can issue opinions, but if great Americans like John Raney and Jeremy Johnson don’t take a bold stand for freedom, we will all lose our liberty.”

Students wanted to start a SUIF chapter at the Long Island-area high school last year, but their request was denied.

Source:

#ANS2014

#christian, #congress, #new-york, #united-states

‘ Banning Word of ALLAH is Liking Banning Word of GOD ‘

#AceWorldNews (Exclusive) – Opinion – South East Asia News – September 18

For long, Malaysia has been a multi-religious country where most people can adhere to their own religion even though Islam is the official religion. A state with a history of its diverse faith followers that lived in peace with each other. However, recent years have seen a drastic rise in growing intolerance towards the religious and ethnic minorities.

malaysia-allah-ban-muslim

In recent developments, are the infamous Malay Court Ban limiting the use of the Arabic word Allah for Muslims “ONLY.

The country has come under fire for its systematic evidence of targeting Christian community; the church burnings, grave desecration and the seizure of 300 Bibles. This Bible raid was justified under the Court ruling as it contained the word Allah. Come again.

When one thinks that the word Allah has been used by Malaysians for over 600 years and the name Allah was used in the Gospel printed in Malaysian 400 years ago, we can better comprehend the senselessness and impropriety of this prohibition. Ridiculous:.

The followers of Christ in the Arabian Peninsula, including some 12 million followers of Christianity are using the word Allah without any qualms or statutory rulings.

So why and what is wrong in Malaysian Christians using the word Allah?

The Koran itself is very clear on this subject, by affirming that Muslims should say to Jews and Christians that “our God and your God is one”.

However, many Malay Muslims have a rigid and schematic view of Islam. The challenge is to “educate the masses” and to promote religious freedom. Moreover, the government says Allah should be reserved exclusively for Muslims — who make up nearly two-thirds of the country’s 29 million people — because if other religions use it that could confuse Muslims and lead them to convert.

For crying out loud, is this really happening?

The Allah ban is a direct result of our failure in Nation Building as a peoples. Everyone is responsible for it and everyone should play a role in the reconciliation process. We will have to look back as a nation and ask where did we go wrong. Then from there, we will need to find new creative ways to bridge the cross cultural gaps that led to this point,” says Malaysian human rights defender and Director, Dignity International (an international human rights based organization) Adrian Periera.

On-ground human rights groups have joined hands with Malaysian Catholics in campaigning against this ruling. One good that came out of this inanity, is the renewal of the Malaysians spirit that is seen into coming together as a united force. Needless, the Malays Catholics don’t find themselves alone in this battle and can count on the support of Muslim groups.

Organizations like Sisters in Islam (SIS) and the Front for Islamic revival (IRF) have launched initiatives on social networks to promote accurate information removed from the ideology and propaganda of the government and extremist movements.

God, what is your religion?” This cryptic question, spotted on a T-shirt worn by a Malay Muslim woman demonstrator in a public protest for expressing solidarity with minority Christians over who can use the term ‘Allah’.

This debate has crossed national borders and sparked a debate among Muslims around the world.

In Pakistan, the English daily newspaper Daily Times questioned the ruling, asking why Malaysia would deny people of other faiths to “own God in all His attributes”. Similarly a newspaper in the United Arab Emirates called the court ruling “wrong”, and said the word Allah was never exclusive to Islam but used by both Christians and Jews to refer to God even before the advent of Islam.

So. My God is not your God. And your God is not mine”

Is this making sense to any sane person within Malaysia and elsewhere? I guess not.

Reza Aslam, Muslim Academic writer said that the world was “laughing” at Malaysia over the court ruling that he described as a political decision more than anything else. “That you can control people’s ideas, their behavior, their faith and their minds simply by trying to control the words that they use, is absurd. It is an embarrassment to a modern, constitutional, democratic and deeply Muslim state like Malaysia,” said the religious scholar.

Indeed, congratulations to Malaysia being the first country to ban God’s name and to limit God to themselves.

Source: 

#ASEAN2014

Ace Related News: 

1. Silent Soldier 

2. Silent Soldier Blog  

2. Malaysia’s Top Court Rules Non-Muslims Cannot Use the World Allah to Refer to God 

3. Ban on use of Allah is Dangerous  

#allah, #asean, #bibles, #christian, #god, #malaysia, #muslims, #non-muslims, #sea, #south-east-asia-news

UNITED STATES: ‘ Washington Asks North Korea to Grant Amnesty for Three American Detainees ‘

#AceWorldNews – UNITED STATES – September 15 – Washington has asked North Korea to pardon two Americans sentenced to prison terms, VOA said.

U.S. citizen Matthew Todd Miller (2nd R) sits in a witness box during his trial at the North Korean Supreme Court in Pyongyang, September 14, 2014.

U.S. citizen Matthew Todd Miller (2nd R) sits in a witness box during his trial at the North Korean Supreme Court in Pyongyang, September 14, 2014.

On Sunday, Matthew Todd Miller, 24 was convicted of espionage.

Kenneth Bae Pleads for Release

Kenneth Bae Pleads for Release

The US has requested Pyongyang to pardon both Miller, who was sentenced to six years hard labour by the Supreme Court, and Kenneth Bae, 46, a Korean-American Christian missionary who has been held since November 2012 and is serving a 15-year sentence.

Jeffrey Fowle Pleads his Innocence

Jeffrey Fowle Pleads his Innocence

Also, Jeffrey Fowle, 56, is awaiting trial for “hostile acts” against the state.

Both Miller and Fowle were detained in April.

The US wants Pyongyang to grant amnesty to all three.

#ANS2014

#christian, #north-korea, #pyongyang, #united-states, #washington

SYRIA: ‘ Government Troops Capture Town of Halfaya to Defend Allawite People’s ‘

#AceWorldNews – SYRIA (Hama) – September 12 – Syrian government troops have captured the town of Halfaya in central Hama province that has changed hands several times during the war, AP said, citing the military and activists.

By retaking the key town, troops will be better positioned to defend nearby Christian and Allawite communities that support President Bashar Assad.

The army command said that the current offensive aims “to wipe out terrorists in northern parts of Hama.” 

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Halfaya was captured by the army on Thursday.

#ANS2014

#syrian, #activists, #allawite, #christian, #halfaya, #hama, #president-bashar-assad, #syria

` Sudanese Woman Awaiting Death Penalty for Crime of Marrying a Christian Gives Birth ‘

#AceNewsServices – SUDAN – May 27 – A Sudanese woman awaiting the death penalty for abandoning her religious faith has given birth in jail near the capital, Khartoum, her lawyer has said.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim Ishag married a Christian man and was sentenced to hang for apostasy earlier this month after refusing to renounce Christianity.

She is allowed to nurse her baby girl for two years before the sentence is carried out.

Born to a Muslim father, she was convicted by a Sharia court.

Sudan has a majority Muslim population, which is governed by Islamic law.

Hundred Lashes:


(Top News)

Ms Ibrahim was also convicted of adultery on the grounds that her marriage to a Christian man from South Sudan was void under Sudan’s version of Islamic law, which says Muslim women cannot marry non-Muslims.

For this the judge sentenced her to 100 lashes, which will reportedly be carried out when she has recovered from giving birth.

Ms Ibrahim was raised as an Orthodox Christian, her mother’s religion, because her father, a Muslim, was reportedly absent during her childhood.

Amnesty International Reported:

That she was arrested and charged with adultery in August 2013, and the court added the charge of apostasy in February 2014 when she said she was a Christian and not a Muslim.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, a 27-year- old Christian Sudanese woman, eight months pregnant with her second child, was convicted of ‘adultery’ and ‘apostasy’ by a court in Khartoum on 11 May. Meriam has been given three days by the court to recant her faith.

Her next hearing will be held on 15 May, when she is likely to be sentenced to flogging and death.

Treating adultery and apostasy as criminal offences is not consistent with international human rights law – including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – to which Sudan is a state party. The criminalization of adultery violates the rights to freedom of expression and association and invariably discriminates against women in its enforcement.

The criminalization of apostasy is incompatible with the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. Meriam Ibrahim is a prisoner of conscience, convicted solely because of her religious beliefs and identity, and must be released immediately and unconditionally.

Meriam was arrested and charged with adultery in August 2013 after a family member reportedly claimed that she was committing adultery because of her marriage to a Christian South Sudanese man.

Under Shari’a law as practised in Sudan, a Muslim woman is not permitted to marry a non-Muslim man, and any such marriage is considered adultery.

The court added the charge of apostasy in February 2014 when Meriam asserted that she was a Christian and not a Muslim. According to Meriam, she was raised as an Orthodox Christian, her mother’s religion, because her father, a Muslim, was absent during her childhood.

Meriam risks being sentenced to up to 100 lashes for adultery under Article 146.

If she refuses to recant her Christian faith, she risks the death penalty for apostasy under Article 126 of the Sudan Criminal Code.

The punishment of flogging violates the absolute prohibition against torture and other ill-treatment in international human rights law.

Amnesty International considers the death penalty to be the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment and a violation of the right to life and opposes its use in all cases and without exception, regardless of the nature of the crime.

Reuters – AP – AFP – Amnesty International

#ANS2014

#amnesty-international, #christian, #islamic, #muslim, #orthodox, #sharia-law, #sudan, #sudanese

` Nigerian Girl Recounts the Kidnapping and the Events that Took Place When 276 Were Abducted '

#AceNewsServices – NIGERIA – May 06 – A Report on the abduction of the 276 girls from the school in Chibok and one girls account as it happened.

The girls in the school dorm heard the sound of gunshots from a nearby town. So when armed men in uniforms burst in and promised to rescue them, at first they were relieved.

“Don’t worry, we’re soldiers,” one 16-year-old girl recalls them saying. “Nothing is going to happen to you.”

The gunmen commanded the hundreds of students at the Chibok Government Girls Secondary School to gather outside.
The men went into a storeroom and removed all the food.
Then they set fire to the room.

“They … started shouting, ‘Allahu Akhbar,’ (God is great),” the 16-year-old student said. “And we knew.”

What they knew was chilling: The men were not government soldiers at all. They were members of the ruthless Islamic extremist group called Boko Haram.

They kidnapped the entire group of girls and drove them away in pick-up trucks into the dense forest.

The 16-year-old was among about 50 students who escaped on that fateful day, and she spoke for the first time in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.

The AP also interviewed about 30 others, including Nigerian government and Borno state officials, school officials, six relatives of the missing girls, civil society leaders and politicians in north-east Nigeria and soldiers in the war zone.

Many spoke on condition of anonymity, fearing that giving their names would also reveal the girls’ identities and subject them to possible stigmatization in this conservative society.

Like all schools in Borno state, Chibok, an elite academy of both Muslim and Christian girls, had been closed because of increasingly deadly attacks by Boko Haram.

But it had reopened to allow final-year students to take exams.

AP

Ace Related News :
1. AL-Arabiya – May 06 – http://tinyurl.com/k7jhh2g

#ANS2014

#boko-haram, #chibok, #christian, #muslim, #nigeria

#AceWorldNews May 02 JERUSALEM A visit to Israeli…

#AceWorldNews – May 02 – JERUSALEM – A visit to Israeli-occupied Jerusalem by the patriarch of the Lebanon-based Maronite church to greet Pope Francis would be a “historic sin,” a leading secular newspaper said Saturday.

Patriarch Beshara al-Rai, whose church is the largest Christian denomination in Lebanon, told AFP on Friday he would travel to the Holy Land to welcome the pontiff during his brief May 24-26 visit.

In doing so, he would be the first patriarch to do so since the 1948 Nakba.

In response, the leading Arab nationalist daily As-Safir ran a critical piece headlined “Historic sin: Rai goes to Israel.”

#ANS2014

#christian, #holy-land, #jerusalem, #patriarch, #pope-francis

` Former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams Calls Britain a Post-Christian Country ‘

#AceNewsServices – BRITAIN – April – Britain is now a “post-Christian” country, former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has said.

Speaking to the Sunday Telegraph, Lord Williams said Britain was not a nation of believers and that the era of widespread worship was over.

It comes after Prime Minister David Cameron said people in Britain should be confident of its status as “a Christian country”.

Deputy PM Nick Clegg said the Church and state should be separated.

Writing in the Church Times, Mr Cameron said Christians made a difference to people’s lives and should be more evangelical about it.

This prompted a group of 50 public figures to write a letter insisting that the UK was “a non-religious” and “plural” society and that to claim otherwise fostered “alienation and division”.

(Telegraph) April 26 – Britain is now a “post-Christian” country, the former archbishop of Canterbury has declared, as research suggests that the majority of Anglicans and Roman Catholics now feel afraid to express their beliefs.
In an interview with The Telegraph, Lord Williams of Oystermouth says Britain is no longer “a nation of believers” and that a further decline in the sway of the Church is likely in the years ahead.

While the country is not populated exclusively by atheists, the former archbishop warns that the era of regular and widespread worship is over.

In writing in the (Telegraph) on April 20 – SIR – We respect the Prime Minister’s right to his religious beliefs and the fact that they necessarily affect his own life as a politician. However, we object to his characterisation of Britain as a “Christian country” and the negative consequences for politics and society that this engenders.

Apart from in the narrow constitutional sense that we continue to have an established Church, Britain is not a “Christian country”.

Repeated surveys, polls and studies show that most of us as individuals are not Christian in our beliefs or our religious identities.

Ace Related News:
1. April 27 – BBC News – http://tinyurl.com/kqkjhp3
2. April 26 – Telegraph – http://tinyurl.com/k9llrgg
3 April 20 – Telegraph – http://tinyurl.com/mustt8g

#ANS2014

#anglicans, #archbishop-of-canterbury, #britain, #christian, #prime-minister-david-cameron, #roman-catholic

` Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill has called for Peace in the Ukraine and Russia at Easter ‘

#AceWorldNews – MOSCOW – April 20 – Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill has urged all Christians of the Russian Orthodox Church to pray hard for peace in Ukraine in these Easter days.

“Today, we should pray for the people of Russia and Ukraine in particular; let’s pray that peace be restored in the minds and hearts of our brothers and sisters in blood and faith and that the lost ties and cooperation which we all need so much also be restored,” the head of the Russian Orthodox Church said in his Easter message.

The patriarch said that the Russian Orthodox Church like all Christianity in general united people irrespective of national, cultural and state borders because the light of Christ’s teaching enlightened everybody.

#ANS2014

#russia, #christ, #christian, #christianity, #easter, #moscow, #ukraine

` Pope Francis Delivers Passionate Plea for Peace in his First Easter Sunday Message ‘

#AceWorldNews – ROME – April 20 – Pope Francis has delivered a passionate plea for peace in his first Easter Sunday message since being elected.

Francis used his “Urbi et Orbi” address to call for peace in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and across the globe.


“Urbi et Orbi

He singled out “dear Syria”, saying: “How much blood has been shed! And how much suffering must there still be before a political solution is found?”

Easter is the most important festival in the Christian calendar and pilgrims have attended church across the world.

In Iraq, Catholics flocked to churches amid tight security. Some 200 worshippers celebrated Mass at St Joseph Chaldean Church in Baghdad

In South Africa, many congregations included ailing former President Nelson Mandela in their prayers
In a message for Easter.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron praised the “incredible role” played by Christian churches and organisations in Britain and around the globe.

Vatican – BBC – News Services Worldwide

#ANS2014

#africa, #asia, #baghdad, #christian, #easter-sunday, #iraq, #middle-east, #pope-francis, #prime-minister-david-cameron, #rome, #syria

` Court Sentences ` Christian Couple’ to ` Death’ for Sending a `Blasphemous’ Text Insulting Prophet Mohammed ‘

#AceWorldNews – PAKISTAN – April 05 – (DWN) – A Court in eastern Pakistan has sentenced a Christian couple to death and according have fined them Rs100,000 each, for sending a blasphemous text message and insulting the Prophet Mohammed under Section 25C, their lawyer said Saturday.

Judge Mian Amir Habib handed the death sentence to Shafqat Emmanuel and Shagufta Kausar in a jail in the town of Toba Tek Singh on Friday, defence lawyer Nadeem Hassan told AFP.

Prosecution department officials confirmed the sentence.

#ANS2014

#blasphemous, #christian, #pakistan, #prophet-mohammed

` Malaysian Censorship Board Bans `Noah ‘ for Depicting a Prophet which is forbidden in Islamic Countries ‘

#AceWorldNews – MALAYA – April 05 – Malaysian authorities have banned the Hollywood movie “Noah,” slamming it for depicting a prophet, which is forbidden in Islamic countries.

“I can confirm that it has been banned by the board, the movie could cause quite a lot of anger and distress if it is shown in Malaysia,” said the Malaysian home ministry’s Film Censorship Board unit chairman Abdul Halim Abdul Hamid, according to The Malay Mail On-line. Muslims make up 60 percent of Malaysia’s population.

Numerous Muslim groups worldwide have already condemned the film, while Christian authorities also slammed the movie’s main protagonist Noah, played by Russell Crowe, saying that he was too unconventional. Noah is regarded as an important figure in both Christianity and Islam.

#ANS2014

#christian, #christianity, #islam, #malaya, #malaysian, #muslim, #noah

` Jish has been targeted by a suspected ` Price-Tag ‘ Incident leaving Words written in Hebrew to Ethnically Cleanse Jews’

#AceWorldNews – ISRAEL – April 03 – (Arutz Sheva – INN) – Arab village in the Galilee has been targeted in a suspected “price-tag” incident, according to police.

Around 40 cars had their tires slashed in the predominantly Christian village of Jish, in northern Israel, which lies some 25 kilometres (15 miles) north of the Sea of Galilee, police spokeswoman Luba Samri said Thursday morning.

“This morning in Jish, it was discovered that almost 40 vehicles had had their tyres slashed,” she told AFP, saying police had opened an investigation.

Written in Hebrew on a nearby wall were the words: “Only Gentiles (non-Jews) should be removed from our land,” she said, in an apparent reference to ongoing efforts to ethnically-cleanse Jews from parts of Judea and Samaria.

“Price tag” is a euphemism for politically-motivated vandalism and criminal damage usually attributed to Jewish extremists, carried out either in revenge for Arab terrorist attacks, or in protest of Israeli government policies such as the destruction of Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria.

#ANS2014

#arab, #christian, #galilee, #gentiles, #hebrew, #israel, #israeli, #jewish, #jews, #jish, #judea, #samaria, #sea-of-galilee

` Chadian Soldiers have Opened Fire after they were Attacked by a ` Christian Militia ‘ in Northern Bangui ‘

#AceWorldNews – AFRICA – March 31 – Chadian troops reportedly opened fire and killed at least 24 people in the Central African Republic capital, Bangui, local officials says (BBC)

The attack was by a Christian militia, in a Christian neighbourhood in northern Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic (CAR), an officer with the African peacekeeping force MISCA who requested anonymity told AFP.

The CAR has been hit by civil war since Seleka rebels ousted President Francoise Bozize in March 2013.

Despite 6,000 African Union and 2,000 French peacekeepers, violence has continued unabated. Around a quarter of the country’s 4.6 million people have fled their homes.

The Chadian forces are not part of the African Union peacekeeping force and were in CAR to help Chadian nationals evacuate the country.

#ANS2014

#africa, #bangui, #car, #central-african-republic, #chadian, #christian, #misca

“Over a Hundred People mainly `Christian’ have been `Massacred’ in a Nigerian village whilst trying to impose Sharia Law”

#AceWorldNews says latest reports indicate that at least 106 people have been massacred in a Nigerian village, the country’s senator Ali Ndume told AFP, blaming the attack on Boko Haram militants.

The politician added that 60 of those killed have been buried. Witnesses say that some 200 people dressed in military uniform came at around 20:30 GMT in motorcycles and six trucks.

Locals were asked to assemble when alleged Boko Haram members started hacking and slaughtering the mostly Christian village. Boko Haram is seeking to impose Shariah law in Africa’s top oil producer.

#afp, #africa, #boko-haram, #christian, #massacred, #militants, #nigerian, #oil, #sharia-law

UN: “Central Africa Republic {CAR} Humanitarian Official Warns of Genocide”

#AceWorldNews says a senior UN humanitarian official warned on Thursday of the risk of genocide in Central African Republic. The country descended into chaos last year after a Muslim rebel coalition, Séléka, seized power. A wave of killings and looting in turn sparked revenge attacks by the “anti-balaka” Christian militia. The crisis was foreseen, avoidable and produced by the international community’s neglect over many years, Reuters quoted John Ging, director of operations for the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, as saying. Without a massive scaling up in the international response to the crisis, a genocide is possible, the official said.

#anti-balaka, #central-african-republic, #christian, #genocide, #humanitarian, #muslim, #seleka, #un