Religion

This Remote Pakistani Village Is Nothing Like You’d Expect Over the years, a mountainous region in Pakistan has become my second home. I’ve seen firsthand how global events have hurt locals’ livelihoods and how technology has challenged the meaning of tradition. (Photos and article by Matthieu Paley, National Geographics)

Gojal village (Credit nationalgeographics)

PASSU, Pakistan — Sajid Alvi is excited. He just got a grant to study in Sweden. “My Ph.D. is about friction in turbo jet engines,” Alvi says. “I will work on developing new aerospace materials—real geeky stuff!” Alvi’s relatives have come to bid him farewell as he prepares to leave his mountain village and study in a new country, some …

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Institutionalizing the Equality of CitizensBy Peter Jacob (Oct 19, 2016 The Express Tribune)

This September, the speaker of the National Assembly accepted two bills on issues of grave concern for religious minorities, which parliament may consider voting into laws. One is about establishing a “Pakistan Minority Rights Commission” and the other “Protection of Minorities Bill 2016” is about making forced conversion an offence. The bill for constituting the Commission encompasses the needs of …

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12 Pakistanis, seven Saudis arrested following Madina blast

Blast in Madina parking lot
(Credit: siasat.com)

DUBAI, July 8: Saudi Arabia identified on Thursday suspects in two of the three attacks that struck the kingdom on the same day this week, including one outside the sprawling mosque where the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is buried in the western city of Madina that killed four Saudi security troops. In a statement released by the Interior Ministry late Thursday, …

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For millions of Muslims, the murder of Sufi singer Amjad Sabri is about way more than musicBy Haroon Moghul The Washington Post June 26, 2016

Amjad Sabri
(Credit: samaatv)

This week, the music died. Amjad Sabri, a master of qawwali, the devotional music that is wildly popular across the Indian subcontinent and well beyond, was gunned down in Karachi, Pakistan. The man who spent his life singing the praises of the prophet Muhammad, continuing a centuries-long tradition of musical veneration, was accused of blaspheming the prophet, and he was …

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Gunman in Orlando Pledged Allegiance to ISIS Before AttackBy LIZETTE ALVAREZ and RICHARD PÉREZ-PEÑA JUNE 12, 2016 The New York Times

Umar Mateen
(Credit: fox5sandiego.com)

ORLANDO, Fla. — A gunman who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State opened fire in a crowded gay nightclub here early Sunday in a shooting that left 50 dead and another 53 wounded. The gunman, identified as Omar Mateen, had been investigated twice by the F.B.I. for possible connections to terrorism, the bureau said, but no ties could be confirmed. …

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Sadiq Khan: ‘Ruthless? No. Decency can get you to the top in politics’Simon Hattenstone The Guardian UK

London Mayor Sadiq Khan
(Credit: edienet)

Sadiq Khan asks to meet in the Lahore Kahari, his local curry house, in Tooting. I haven’t eaten all morning – don’t want to spoil my appetite. Khan walks in, shakes my hand tightly, sits down and starts talking 10 to the dozen. It’s only a couple of weeks since the election, and he says he’s in the final stage …

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Pakistani activist Khurram Zaki murdered in KarachiBBC News

Khurram Zaki
(Credit: siasat.pk)

A prominent Pakistani journalist and human rights activist, Khurram Zaki, has been shot dead in Karachi. Mr Zaki was dining in a restaurant in the city’s north when suspects opened fire from motorbikes, reports say. He was an editor of the website Let us Build Pakistan, which condemns sectarianism and is seen as promoting democratic and progressive values. The spokesman …

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D-Chowk Protestors call off sit-in after “successful negotiations” with GovtAFP

D-chowk Islamabad protesters
(Credit: thenews.co.uk)

ISLAMABAD, March 30: Four days into their protest outside at D-Chowk, supporters of the former Punjab governor’s assassin have agreed to call off their sit-in and disperse following a ‘successful’ round of negotiations with the government, Express News reported on Wednesday. According to sources, the government has agreed to some of the demands of pro-Mumtaz Qadri supporters, which include the release …

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Pakistan hunts those behind attack that killed more than 70 in LahoreTaha Siddiqui The Guardian UK

Lahore massacre
Credit: amny.com

Islamabad, March 28 – Pakistani authorities are searching for fighters from a Taliban militant faction that claimed responsibility for the Easter suicide bombing of a public park in Lahore that killed at least 72 people, many of whom were thought to be children. The first funerals for those killed were taking place on Monday as the country began a three-day …

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Brothers Among 3 Brussels Suicide AttackersBy ALISSA J. RUBIN, KIMIKO DE FREYTAS-TAMURA & AURELIEN BREEDEN The New York Times

Brothers in crime
(Credit: rt.com)

BRUSSELS, March 23 — The Brussels suicide bombers included two Belgium-born brothers with a violent criminal past and suspected links to plotters of the Islamic State’s Paris attacks last November, the authorities said on Wednesday, raising new alarms about Europe’s leaky defenses against a militant organization that has terrorized two European capitals with seeming impunity. One of the brothers was …

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Feeling GOP Peril, Muslims Try to Get out the VoteBy Alan Rappeport The New York TImes

'Bird of peace' visits Bernie rally
(Credit: nydailynews.com)

WASHINGTON, March 25  — American Muslims are watching in growing horror as Donald J. Trump and Senator Ted Cruz battle for the Republican presidential nomination, outdoing each other with provocative proposals that have included Muslim registries, immigration bans and fleets of police patrolling their neighborhoods. With round tables, summit meetings and news releases falling on deaf ears, national advocacy groups …

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ON Feb. 29 – a bad day for anniversaries – Pakistan executed my father’s killerBy Aatish Taseer The New York Times

My father was the governor of Punjab Province from 2008 until his death in 2011. At that time, he was defending a Christian woman who had fallen afoul of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws, which are used by the Sunni majority to terrorize the country’s few religious minorities. My father spoke out against the laws, and the judgment of television hosts and …

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Thousands at funeral of Pakistani executed for murdering governorJon Boone in Rawalpindi The Guardian UK

Qadri funeral
(Credit: theguardian.com)

Rawalpindi, March 1: An estimated crowd of more than 100,000 people have attended the funeral of Mumtaz Qadri, in a massive show of support for the convicted murderer of a leading politician who had criticised Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. The vast gathering on Tuesday centred on Liaquat Park in Rawalpindi, where a succession of clerics made fiery speeches bitterly condemning the …

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Why Obama’s mosque visit is criticized — in a way George W. Bush’s wasn’tBy Aaron Blake The Washington Post Feb 4, 2016

Obama visits Baltimore mosque
(Credit: Washingtonpost.com)

The same day President Obama visited a U.S. mosque for the first time as president, the Pew Research Center showed why many Americans likely objected to his even setting foot there. That sentiment was pretty well expressed by GOP presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who cast Obama’s suggestion that the United States discriminates against Muslims as Obama pitting Americans “against each …

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Iran supreme leader says Saudi faces ‘divine revenge’By Louisa Loveluck The Telegraph

Iran protests
(Credit: mynewspage.eu)

Dubai, Jan 3: Iran’s supreme leader said on Sunday that Saudi Arabia will face “divine revenge” for executing a top Shia cleric whose death sparked protests in which the kingdom’s embassy in Tehran was firebombed. “The unjustly spilled blood of this oppressed martyr will no doubt soon show its effect and divine vengeance will befall Saudi politicians,” state TV reported …

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Donald Trump featured in new jihadist recruitment videoBy Peter Holley The Washington Post

Washington, Jan 2: Last month, The Washington Post reported that white nationalists have begun using Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as a recruitment tool. Now, the polarizing Republican presidential front-runner has become the recruitment fodder for another group of marginalized extremists. A propaganda video released by the Somali-based al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabab includes a clip of Trump calling on the United …

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Pakistan is still trying to get a grip on its madrassa problemBy Tim Craig The Washington Post

Pak madressah
(Credit: dawn.com)

ISLAMABAD, Dec 16 — In a country that has more than 20,000 religious schools, Pakistani investigators say the madrassa where Tashfeen Malik studied the Koran doesn’t stand out as being especially radical or linked to past violence. But experts here can’t say the same about every other madrassa in the country. Religious schools provide Koranic teachings to 3.5 million children and …

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I Worry About MuslimsBy MOHAMMED HANIF The New York Times Contributing Op-Ed Writer

KARACHI, Dec 17 — I worry about Muslims. Islam teaches me to care about all human beings, and animals too, but life is short and I can’t even find enough time to worry about all the Muslims. I don’t worry too much about the Muslims who face racial slurs in Europe and America, the ones who are suspected of harboring …

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The Muslim DrillBy WAJAHAT ALI DEC. 9, 2015 Op-Ed The New York Times

Trump seeks to ban Muslim entry to US (Credit: yalibnan.com)

AFTER the terrorist attacks in Paris last month, a real estate mogul and television host with nature-defying hair used the moment to publicly muse about registration databases and even special identification cards for American Muslims. For the sake of efficiency, I created a card myself, listing my skin tone as “Caramel Mocha,” my ethnicity as “Bollywood” and my religion as …

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Tashfeen Malik Studied at Conservative Religious School In PakistanBy Saeed Shah & Qasim Nauman The Wall Street Journal

Tashfeen & Rizwan enter US in 2014
(Credit: wsj.com)

MULTAN, Dec 7— Tashfeen Malik, who went on a deadly shooting spree in California with her husband last week, studied after college at a conservative Islamic religious school here that attracts relatively well-educated and affluent women. Officials at the Al-Huda International school said Ms. Malik took classes on the Quran for about a year until May 2014—two months before she …

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