Bendigo mosque: high court throws out request to hear appeal

The Guardian World news: Islam - 15 June, 2016 - 02:46

Resident ordered to pay court costs after special leave to appeal ruling dismissed by justices Patrick Keane and Susan Kiefel

Australia’s high court has thrown out a request to hear an appeal from opponents of a proposed Bendigo mosque.

Justices Patrick Keane and Susan Kiefel in Canberra on Wednesday dismissed an application for special leave to appeal an earlier ruling that had upheld Bendigo council’s decision to approve the mosque.

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Muslim cleric who advocated death penalty for homosexual acts leaves Australia

The Guardian World news: Islam - 15 June, 2016 - 01:15

British preacher Farrokh Sekaleshfar flies out before visa revoked, saying: ‘Never have I incited hatred or violence’

A British sheikh who advocated death as the penalty for homosexual acts has left Australia ahead of a decision to revoke his visa.

The immigration minister, Peter Dutton, told Sky New on Wednesday he had already decided to cancel the sheikh’s visa and he was unlikely to be allowed to return.

Related: Visa of anti-gay Muslim cleric under review, says Malcolm Turnbull

Related: Queer Muslims exist – and we are in mourning too

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Fact-checking Donald Trump's speech in the wake of the Orlando terror attack

The Guardian World news: Islam - 14 June, 2016 - 20:19

After the presumptive Republican nominee veered into rhetoric without modern campaign precedent on Monday, our reporter sought to verify some of Trump’s more outrageous claims

Donald Trump escalated his demagogic rhetoric on Monday in the aftermath of the terrorist attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, that killed 49.

Originally intended to be an attack on Bill and Hillary Clinton, Trump’s speech was refocused to be a discussion “of the serious threats facing all Americans and his solutions for making this country safe again”.

Related: Obama takes on Trump: 'Are we going to start treating all Muslim Americans differently?'

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Obama challenges Trump's proposed Muslim ban – video

The Guardian World news: Islam - 14 June, 2016 - 20:12

Barack Obama, speaking on Tuesday, criticises Donald Trump’s proposed plan to ban Muslims from travelling to the United States, following the presumptive Republican nominee’s response to the Orlando massacre. Obama also says he will not be using the term ‘radical Islam’, pointing out that using the label would achieve nothing

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Obama takes on Trump: 'Are we going to start treating all Muslim Americans differently?'

The Guardian World news: Islam - 14 June, 2016 - 19:15
  • President makes strongest rebuke of ‘loose talk’ after Orlando attack
  • Hillary Clinton paints rival as ‘conspiracy theorist’

Barack Obama has launched a stinging rebuke to Donald Trump’s response to the Orlando massacre, accusing the presumptive Republican nominee of “betraying American values” by suggesting all Muslims were complicit in such attacks.

In the most forceful remarks yet of an already febrile election season, the president warned of a “dangerous mindset” and “loose talk” that was of a different order from previous partisan criticism and threatened the very nature of American democracy.

Related: Obama angrily rejects Trump's Muslim ban: 'Do Republicans agree?' – live

Related: Guns, terror, and LGBT rights: Orlando shooting raises stakes for next president

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Life of Uyghur Muslims In China

Muslim Matters - 14 June, 2016 - 08:27

This article is written by a Uighur activist living through the ordeal of being a Muslim under Chinese rule. We have chosen not to disclose her name for her safety.

Uighurs, a Turkic-speaking Muslim minority that consider this region its homeland are forced to live a inhuman life. There are a lot of restrictions as mosques are barred from broadcasting the call to prayer—the adhan. Restrictions on the movements of laborers have wreaked havoc on local agriculture. And a battery of ever more intrusive ways are released to monitor the communications of citizens for possible threats to public security.

The tough security measures are for travelers are on full views as they stop at the ubiquitous highway checkpoints that slow movement across rugged expanse of deserts and snowy peaks.

As heavily armed soldiers rummage through car trunks and examine ID cards, ethnic Uighur motorists and their passengers are sometimes asked to hand over their cellphones so that the police can search them for content or software deemed a threat to public security.

In the name of security, Uyghurs are being suppressed by the police. Sometimes it crossed all the limits. The situation is getting worse, day by day. Police may ask citizens to hand over their cell phones at any time. These days even receiving phone calls from overseas is enough to warrant a visit from state security.

In addition to jihadist videos, the police are on the lookout for Skype and WhatsApp, apps popular with those who communicate with friends and relatives outside China, and for software that allows users to access blocked websites.

Now, the government decides what to wear and how to pray.

The most shocking thing is now government is telling to change the name of their children.

Day by day the government brutality is increasing. They are posing new laws. In some homes there are only babies or small kids as their parents have been taken away.

Police patrols,  include one official policeman, three members of the auxiliary police, and 10 militia members from each village that they inspect. At night, they patrol until 2:00 a.m., and stop anyone found walking around so that they can check their backgrounds and identification.

Police also investigate residents' guests to see if they have come from out of town, with police confiscating visitors' identification cards until they have returned to their own homes. Village residents wishing to visit relatives or seek medical treatment in other places must first obtain a letter from village police describing past political involvements, according to police officials.

Other measures have contributed to the widespread perception that Uighur identity is under siege. Schools have largely switched to using Mandarin as the main language of instruction instead of Uighur, and the government has begun offering cash and housing subsidies to encourage marriages between Uighurs and Han, the country's ethnic majority, who have migrated to the region in large numbers.

These are some links to social media accounts that help share our ordeal.


Visa of anti-gay Muslim cleric under review, says Malcolm Turnbull

The Guardian World news: Islam - 14 June, 2016 - 05:09

Farrokh Sekaleshfar, who toured Orlando in March and is set to give lectures in Sydney, preached that homosexual acts should be punishable by death

The immigration department is reviewing the visa of a Shia Muslim cleric who toured Orlando in March and argues that homosexual acts are punishable by death under sharia law.

British-born medical doctor and preacher Farrokh Sekaleshfar is giving lectures throughout the Islamic holy month of Ramadan at the Imam Husain Islamic Centre in Sydney’s south-west.

Related: Cleric who preached death for homosexual acts and toured Orlando visits Sydney

Related: Queer Muslims exist – and we are in mourning too

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On The #Orlando Massacre

Loon Watch - 14 June, 2016 - 00:57

People attend a candlelight vigil for the victims of the Orlando attack against a gay night club, held in San Francisco, California, U.S. June 12, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

People attend a candlelight vigil for the victims of the Orlando attack against a gay night club, held in San Francisco, California, U.S. June 12, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

The past week has been a roller coaster for Muslim Americans. Muhammad Ali’s passing which was a tragedy brought the country together and for a moment Islam and Muslims were human again. Ali, represented the best of Islam and was a “radical Muslim” in his own right. He reminded America and the world that to be a “radical Muslim” doesn’t need only conjure images of ISIS and Alqaeda fighters. Just a day later, a man named Omar Mateen, attacked an Orlando gay bar massacring 50 and injuring 53 people. It is important here to speak out and condemn homophobia and all that contributes to it. Orlando and those affected by the attacks are in our thoughts.

Dalia Mohaged: Muhammad Ali Saw the Oneness of Humanity

altmuslim - 13 June, 2016 - 22:00
This is Day Eight of the #30Days30Writers 2016 Ramadan series. Editors note: The following are remarks made by Dalia Mohaged at the Janaza prayers for Muhammad Ali, which are more important to read and reflect on now more than ever — to recognize a man many in the American Muslim community look to as a true, positive [Read More...]

Orlando Massacre: The Need To Challenge Homophobia

Inayat's Corner - 13 June, 2016 - 19:20


Just over six months after a Muslim couple killed 14 people in San Bernardino County, USA – killings in whose aftermath US Presidential candidate Donald Trump would call for an immediate ban on all Muslims entering the USA – we have witnessed yet another massacre committed by a US Muslim.

It is too early at this stage to say whether the killer Omar Mateen’s possible mental health issues played a role in the massacre. There will also no doubt be the usual questioning of the ridiculous US gun laws which appear to make lethal weapons readily available to aspiring murderers.

What we can perhaps most safely say at the moment is that the killings which took place in the Orlando gay club were motivated by a virulent form of homophobia.

The main monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, all have a lamentable record when it comes to the persecution of gays.

A few years back, when I was in the MCB and had written an article for the Guardian defending gay rights, I recall shortly afterwards that the MCB received an email from a leading figure in a Salafi mosque in Luton criticising me in pretty severe terms for my “deviant views”. I just shrugged it off at the time as being the usual narrow-minded nonsense from Salafi nutjobs, but perhaps, in retrospect, I should have called them out openly at the time and challenged their views.

It is sad to see so many Muslims who have first hand experience of anti-Muslim bigotry and discrimination, being too ready to indulge in anti-gay bigotry. As a society, we in the UK have come a commendably long way in just the past thirty years when it comes to recognising anti-gay attitudes and challenging them. It could be that more needs to be done in our schools to teach about the benefits and value of living in a free, secular and liberal society that prohibits discrimination based on gender, ethnicity, religion or sexuality.

Just over three years ago, in May 2013, two UK Muslims killed Fusilier Lee Rigby openly in the streets and boasted that they “wanted to start a war in London. Fortunately, they failed to achieve that vile aim. It could be that the San Bernardino killers and the Orlando killer, Omar Mateen, also wanted to provoke an anti-Muslim backlash in the USA to further civil disharmony. If so, with the frightening spectre of Donald Trump looming large in the background, one can only hope that they too fail to achieve their dishonourable goals.

I've studied radicalization – and Islamophobia often plants the seed | Sarah Lyons-Padilla

The Guardian World news: Islam - 13 June, 2016 - 19:00

The evidence shows that alienating an entire religious community, as Donald Trump has done, will make us less safe. There are better ways to fight extremism

Speculation has been rife about the motives of Omar Mateen, the 29-year-old man who killed 49 and injured at least 53 in a gay nightclub in Orlando. Reports say that he called 911 to pledge his allegiance to the Islamic State shortly before opening fire.

Following an attack of this nature, we can expect two streams of reactions. President Obama, Hillary Clinton and others are of the first type, urging us to condemn retaliation against Muslims. In contrast, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is of the second, insisting that the US strictly scrutinize or even ban Muslims from entering the country.

My results are not surprising to social scientists, who know that humans derive self-worth from the groups we belong to

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