Archive for the 'saudi arabia' Category

13
Apr
08

Iran: Mosque Target of Bombing

Muslims love each other to death…

Iran mosque blast kills 12, wounds over 200

April 13, 2008 – 9:21PM

Twelve people were killed and at least 202 wounded when an explosion ripped through a packed mosque in Iran’s southern city of Shiraz during prayers by a prominent cleric, officials said on Sunday.

Uncertainty surrounded the cause of Saturday evening’s blast, which some officials insisted was an accident but others said could have been caused by a bomb.

The massive explosion in the men’s section of the mosque took place at around 9:00 pm (1630 GMT) during an evening prayer sermon by prominent local cleric Mohammad Anjavinejad, Iranian media reported.

Twelve people were killed and 202 wounded, the governor of the local Fars province, whose name was given as Rezazadeh, told state television.

“The incident could have happened as a result of negligence. A while ago at this site there was an exhibition commemorating the (1980-1988) Iran-Iraq war,” provincial police chief Commander Ali Moayeri told the Fars news agency.

“The munitions left at the site could have caused this explosion,” he added. The agency said he ruled out an act of sabotage.

Television pictures showed shards of glass and piles of debris inside the mosque and huge crowds gathered to await news of loved ones. Casualties, their clothes soaked with blood, filled local hospitals.

“Last night’s incident… was definitely an accident. We are studying the cause, but as of now but main reason is not clear,” Deputy Interior Minister Abbas Mohtaj told the Mehr news agency.

Other sources indicated that the possibility of a militant attack had not been ruled out, however.

A judicial probe has been launched to determine the cause of the explosion and the possibility of sabotage,” Shiraz prosecutor Jaber Baneshi told IRNA.

Shiraz MP Mohammad Nabi Roodaki said the explosion could have been caused by unknown people deliberately setting off the munitions used in the Iraq war exhibition, the student ISNA news agency reported.

Anjavinejad himself cast doubt on the accident theory, saying that the force of the blast and the presence of an individual who planted a package before his sermon suggested otherwise.

“Some parties are trying to show this was an accident to portray the city as safe. But it is their duty to implement security,” he told the Alef news website.

One of Iran’s most famous cities, Shiraz is popular with foreign tourists because of its proximity to important ancient sites from the Achaemenian Empire that ruled much of Asia from 550-331 BC.

Fars said the death toll was set to rise because many victims were in a critical condition.

Iranian media quoted eyewitnesses as saying the explosion caused a cloud of dust to billow into the sky and caused panic among worshippers.

There have been deadly attacks in Iran’s border cities with ethnic minority populations in recent years, but a strike in a non-frontier city such as Shiraz would be unprecedented.

Such attacks in Iran have become extremely rare over the past two decades, although the first years after the 1979 Islamic revolution saw a succession of bombings in Tehran by outlawed opposition groups.

The last major attack was a February 2007 strike by suspected Sunni rebels in the city of Zahedan in the southeastern Sistan-Baluchestan border province that killed 13 elite Revolutionary Guards.

According to the reports, before Saturday’s blast Anjavinejad had been preaching against Wahhabism — the ultra-conservative form of Sunni Islam practised in Saudi Arabia. He is reported to be a vehement critic of Wahhabis.

In his sermon he also attacked Bahais, who were once Iran’s biggest non-Muslim minority by far and who believe in the unity of all religions, Fars reported.

Bahais are deemed to be apostate by the Islamic republic, and their beliefs are not recognised by the constitution.

© 2008 AFP

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01
Apr
08

Saudi Arabia: Father marries his daughter off to a convicted murderer

Prison Marriage Brings Humanitarian Issues Into Focus
Walaa Hawari, Arab News

RIYADH, 18 March 2008 — Muhammad Al-Zahrani, a convicted murderer, was executed at the end of February in Taif. Al-Zahrani’s execution, which was postponed for four years, took place after the victims’ family refused to pardon him.

However, what makes Al-Zahrani’s case interesting is that the convicted murderer had married his daughter to another convicted murderer on death row in the same prison, Awad Al-Harbi.

The newly married groom now lives in the hope that he may be saved by the generosity of his victim’s family.

Reaction in society to the prison marriage was mixed. Some saw the father’s decision as a good thing, a way to give a friend and fellow prisoner a second chance in life. Others condemned the step and described it as being unfair to one’s daughter.

The marriage fulfills all legal conditions under Saudi law, according to Sheikh Abdul Mohsen Al-Obaikan, a member of the Council of Senior Scholars.

Al-Obaikan said should a woman accept a man on death row after knowing about his situation there is no reason why the marriage should be stopped from happening. When Arab News questioned Al-Obaikan on the girl’s sound judgment considering she is only 15, he said she is considered an adult and therefore eligible to marry.

Al-Obaikan said that a woman could get married and see her husband die soon after, which would be God’s will, and in Al-Awad’s case it would also be God’s will to keep him alive should the victim’s family pardons him.

As for the idea of marriage in Islam being a form of asylum and haven, and whether this condition applies while one of the spouses is in captivity, Al-Obaikan said that if it is a woman’s choice then no one should object.

Ahmad Al-Hariri, a Ph.D. in forensic psychology, said, “In other countries, a 15-year-old is considered a child and cannot be considered an adult until she turns 18.”

He added that even if such a marriage is legal then it is still considered an assault on her humanity and wellbeing.

Al-Hariri said this could not be accepted both socially and psychologically. “After choosing a suitable spouse, starting a family and having children are the natural outcome of marriage and in this case there is no guarantee for such a family to exist and thrive,” said Al-Hariri.

“The overwhelming possibility of the success of this marriage is bleak, and what we see for the future is a widow with orphans,” he added.

“Even if this marriage is legal, it is totally unacceptable on a humanitarian level as it will harm the girl’s interests. Should the Reconciliation Committee’s efforts fail she will loose a husband after having lost her father,” Al-Hariri said.

Big loss. As if she had a choice in the matter. Somehow I doubt she was all gaga over the convicted murderer.

I wish I could find a pic of the newlyweds.

In what is even more shocking two little children were married in Saudi.

How twisted are these people?

Boy, 11, marries 10-year-old cousin

AN 11-year-old boy has married his 10-year-old cousin in the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Mohammed al-Rashidi and his unidentified cousin would seal the marriage they contracted under the sharia laws of Islam and move in together after a ceremony to take place later this year, Al-Shams newspaper reported today.

I am ready for this marriage. It will help me study better,” Mohammed, who goes to primary school in the northern province of Hail, was quoted as saying by Al-Shams.

I invite all my classmates to do like me,” the boy said.

He wanted to “crown a love story through marriage”.

The boy’s father, Muraizak al-Rashidi, told the newspaper he was busy sending out invitations for a celebration to seal the marriage.

Dahim al-Jaber, the headmaster at Mohammed’s school, said marriage at such a young age was “inappropriate” but wished the couple a happy life together.

“inappropriate”? Downright sick! Making the matter worse is the fact that they are cousins. All the more disgusting and wrong. Inbred child marriage.

And they throw hissy fits when civilized people expose their backwards ways.

21
Mar
08

Saudi Arabian Hypocrisy!

I am not shocked. And I would not expect any less from the mangy Saudis. They fund various Islamic related groups, mosques and collegiate studies in the US and elsewhere. For them to expect the Catholic Church to accept Mohammad (as a prophet) as prerequisite for Church’s in Saudi. Is a mind blowing arrogance. Recognizing Mohammad as a prophet would be going against the faith. They may as well be saying say convert or else. It is as simple as that. Of course that would still mean no church’s. There would be no longer be any need for Catholic Church’s (anywhere). Since Catholicism will have dissipated. The Catholic faith accepting Mohammad as a prophet would be a blasphemous act.

It is a lose, lose situation. Basically they are saying no to church’s in Saudi. Because surely even in their wildest dreams they do not believe that the Catholic Church will go along with such a demand.

Saudi Arabia: No churches unless prophet Mohammed recognised, says expert

Riyadh, 20 March (AKI) – No churches should be permitted in Saudi Arabia, unless Pope Benedict XVI recognised the prophet Mohammed, according to a Middle East expert.

While Saudi mediators are working with the Vatican on negotiations to allow places of religious worship, some experts believe it will not occur without this recognition.

Anwar Ashiqi, president of the Saudi centre for Middle East strategic studies, endorsed this view in an interview on the site of Arab satellite TV network, al-Arabiya on Thursday.

“I haven taken part in several meetings related to Islamic-Christian dialogue and there have been negotiations on this issue,” he said.

“It would be possible to launch official negotiations to construct a church in Saudi Arabia only after the Pope and all the Christian churches recognise the prophet Mohammed.”

“If they don’t recognise him as a prophet, how can we have a church in the Saudi kingdom?”

Ashiqi’s comments came after a declaration launched by the papal nuncio of the Persian Gulf, the archbishop Mounged El-Hachem, at the opening of the first Catholic church in Qatar last week.

The prelate had announced the launch of “treaties to construct a church in Saudi Arabia where it is banned to practise whatever religion they want outside Islam”.

El-Hachem estimated three to four million Christians in the Saudi kingdom who want to have a church.

A member of Saudi Arabia’s Consultative Council, Abdelaziz al-Thinani, rejected the prelate’s claims saying that there were no Christians among the Saudis who were all Muslims.

“Those few Christians do not reside in the country permanently, they come and go,” he said.

He denied there were four million Christians in the kingdom and said the issue of human rights should not be used to call for the construction of a Christian church.

Most of Saudi Arabia’s Christians are foreign workers. There are 8.2 million foreign workers in a country of 25.6 million people according to a report by the Saudi Labour Ministry.

03
Mar
08

Does a Form of Slavery Exist in Saudi Arabia?

Repatriated Lankan Maid Claims Torture, Nonpayment of Wages

chains-women.gif

RIYADH, 3 March 2008 — A Sri Lankan maid, who was tortured brutally by her employer’s wife, has been forcibly sent home without being paid a year’s salary.

“I was tortured severely. The sponsor’s wife burned me with an iron rod, poured disinfectant and gasoline on me and threatened to burn me alive; she also said she would cut my hair to make me ugly,” said Madhuwanthie, the 28-year-old Sri Lankan woman.

Madhuwanthie has — through the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment (SLBFE) — sought the intervention of the Sri Lankan Embassy in Riyadh to contact her sponsor and get her salary dues.

Madhuwanthie, who worked for the household for 21 months, has only received pay for the first nine months of her employment. “Every time I asked for my salary, they would beat me and threaten to hand me over to the police on false charges,” she said in a letter to SLBFE. “I did not have the opportunity to contact the embassy since the telephone was out of my reach.”

According to a Sri Lankan Embassy official, the mission needs to come up with a system whereby it is informed when a domestic worker is sent on final exit.

“This is a clear case of sponsor deserting worker. The sponsor sent the maid home stealthily without anyone’s knowledge fearing he would be questioned for torture and nonpayment of salaries,” said the official.

He added that it would be better if the mission could tackle problems in the presence of both the employer and the employee. Third party inquiries are ineffective since both sides cannot be heard together and a firm commitment from the sponsor cannot be obtained. However, he said the mission would take up the matter with the relevant authorities.

The Sri Lankan Embassy in Riyadh receives an average of nine cases of runaway maids each day. The mission has opened a 24-hour cell to accommodate such cases and report them to the proper authorities. The country’s missions in Jeddah and Riyadh also run safe houses for such workers till problems are resolved. Common complaints by the maids include nonpayment of salaries, harassment and being forced to continue work beyond contract periods. Source.

H/T Doctor Bulldog

Slaves in Saudi

The unpalatable truth is that, the Ottoman and Persian empires were one of the last to abolish slavery, falling far behind their European counterparts in matters of human emancipation. Full abolition of slavery did not come until the twentieth century, with Saudi Arabia holding out until 1962. Given that desert kingdom’s shameful record on this basic human right, it was no surprise to read Human Rights Watch’s report and find that today’s migrant workers are kept in conditions of “near-slavery.”

The Muslim world is sliding backwards into medievalism, and it is time for reformers to speak openly and bravely. There is a cancer that is eating away at our soul — a disease marked by paranoia, double standards and virulent racism. While we are in full-throated cry against abuses in Iraq and Palestine, we stay completely silent when it is Muslims who are the abusers (of both non-Muslims and Muslims).

How else to explain our outpouring of sympathy for the Bosnian genocide, but our complete silence on the ongoing genocide in Sudan? In that country’s civil war between the Arab Muslim North, and the black Christian and Animist South, 2 million people have been killed to date. In a BBC profile of the hundreds of black Africans who have been raped by pro-government Janjaweed Arab militia, one victim described the attackers: “They called me Abeid (slave in Arabic).”

Shame on the Muslim world for staying silent!

BAD DREAMS:
Exploitation and Abuse of Migrant Workers in Saudi Arabia – Human Rights Watch

Summary

an excerpt

“It was like a bad dream” is the way one migrant worker from the Philippines summed up his experiences in Saudi Arabia. Another worker, from Bangladesh, told us: “I slept many nights beside the road and spent many days without food. It was a painful life. I could not explain that life.” A woman in a village in India, whose son was beheaded following a secret trial, could only say this: “We have no more tears, our tears have all dried up.” She deferred to her husband to provide the account of their son’s imprisonment and execution in Jeddah.

It is undeniable that many foreigners employed in the kingdom, in jobs from the most menial to the highest skilled, have returned home with no complaints. But for the women and men who were subjected to abysmal and exploitative working conditions, sexual violence, and human rights abuses in the criminal justice system, Saudi Arabia represented a personal nightmare.

In 1962, then-King Faisal abolished slavery in Saudi Arabia by royal decree. Over forty years later, migrant workers in the purportedly modern society that the kingdom has become continue to suffer extreme forms of labor exploitation that sometimes rise to slavery-like conditions. Their lives are further complicated by deeply rooted gender, religious, and racial discrimination. This provides the foundation for prejudicial public policy and government regulations, shameful practices of private employers, and unfair legal proceedings that yield judicial sentences of the death penalty.

The overwhelming majority of the men and women who face these realities in Saudi Arabia are low-paid workers from Asia, Africa, and countries in the Middle East.

This report gives voice to some of their stories.

It is based on information gathered from migrant workers and their families in mud brick houses off dirt roads in tropical agricultural areas of southwest India, in apartments in densely packed neighborhoods of metropolitan Manila, and in simple dwellings in rural villages of Bangladesh. The victims include skilled and unskilled workers; Muslims, Hindus, and Christians; young adults traveling outside their home countries for the first time; and married men, and single and divorced women, with children to support.

In Saudi Arabia, these workers delivered dairy products, cleaned government hospitals, repaired water pipes, collected garbage, and poured concrete. Some of them baked bread and worked in restaurants; others were butchers, barbers, carpenters, and plumbers. Women migrants cleaned, cooked, cared for children, worked in beauty salons, and sewed custom-made dresses and gowns. Unemployed or underemployed in their countries of origin, and often impoverished, these men and women sought only the opportunity to earn wages and thus improve the economic situation for themselves and their families.

This report is the first comprehensive examination of the variety of human rights abuses that foreign workers experience in Saudi Arabia. The voices of these migrants provide a window into a country whose hereditary, unelected rulers continue to choose secrecy over transparency at the expense of justice. The stories in this report illustrate why so many migrant workers, including Muslims, return to their home countries deeply aggrieved by the lack of equality and due process of law in the kingdom. In an important sense, this report is an indictment of unscrupulous private employers and sponsors as well as Saudi authorities, including interior ministry interrogators and shari’a court judges, who operate without respect for the rule of law and the inherent dignity of all men and women, irrespective of gender, race, and religion.

Some of the most frightening and troubling findings of the report concern mistreatment of women migrant workers, both in the workplace and in Saudi prisons. The report also provides an intimate view of the workings of Saudi Arabia’s criminal justice system, through the eyes of migrant workers with first-hand experience of its significant flaws. And it is the families and friends of migrants who were beheaded, pursuant to judicial rulings, who describe how Saudi authorities kept them and consular officials in the dark until well after the executions were carried out. The mortal remains of these victims were not returned to their families, who until now have no information about what happened to the bodies.

England: Islamic Sexual Slavery of White Girls

11
Jan
08

Jihad

Global jihad terrorist attacks.

Video time line.

19
Dec
07

Saudi Rape Victim Pardoned

king-abdullah.jpg

Saudi king pardons teenage rape victim

1 day ago

RIYADH (AFP) — King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia pardoned a teenage girl sentenced to six months in jail and 200 lashes after being gang raped in a decision swiftly welcomed by Washington on Monday.

Justice Minister Abdullah bin Mohammad bin Ibrahim al-Sheikh hailed the king’s “laudable instructions to grant the pardon”, in a statement carried by the official Saudi Press Agency.

The sentence against the 19-year-old girl had drawn criticism of the ultra-conservative Muslim kingdom from key ally President George W. Bush.

The girl, who was 18 at the time she was raped, was attacked at knifepoint by seven men after she was found in a car with a male companion who was not a relative, in breach of strict Saudi law.

The king also pardoned the male companion, the justice minister announced.

The victim’s identity has not been revealed but she has become known as “Qatif girl,” after the Shiite-populated area of Al-Qatif in the Eastern Province from which she comes.

In October 2006, a judge sentenced her to 90 lashes for being with the man — a taboo in the conservative Muslim kingdom which imposes segregation of the sexes.

She appealed against the sentence but despite her ordeal the court ruled that her punishment should be increased to 200 lashes and a six-month jail term.

The judges decided to punish the girl further for “her attempt to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media,” a court source told the English-language daily Arab News.

The rapists were initially sentenced to one to five years in jail, but those terms were also toughened in November to between two and nine years.

A rape conviction carries the death penalty in Saudi Arabia, but the court did not impose it due to the “lack of witnesses” and the “absence of confessions,” the justice ministry said last month.

The girl’s husband praised the king for granting the pardon.

“This fatherly care and noble gesture will help (in) lifting the emotional and psychological stress and suffering that our family has been enduring,” the husband was quoted as saying on CNN television’s website.

“This is not something new because we know that the king was always generous in dealing with his people and the entire world,” the husband said. “This week, we have two holidays to celebrate; the Eid and this great news of the pardon.”

King Abdullah’s pardon came on the day that Muslims began the annual hajj pilgrimage as two million faithful set off from Mecca to the valley of Mina in Saudi Arabia. Source.

Good news to be sure. And how wonderful for her that her husband is so supportive.

Saudi king ‘pardons’ rape victim

Abdullah bin Mohammed al-Sheikh, the Saudi justice minister, told Al Jazirah daily that the pardon does not mean the king doubted the country’s judges, but instead acted in the “interests of the people”.

The girl’s sentencing had triggered international outrage.

“The king always looks into alleviating the suffering of the citizens when he becomes sure that these verdicts will leave psychological effects on the convicted people, though he is convinced and sure that the verdicts were fair.Source.

Heavy, heavy sigh. An 18 year old female who has suffered through the violent attack of a gang rape is ALREADY experiencing damaging psychological effects! Two hundred lashes after being raped, fair?!

Not in the civilized world!

But then again we are speaking of Saudi Arabia….

Previously: Saudi Arabia: Gang Rape Victim Receives 200 Lashes


16
Nov
07

Saudi Arabia: Gang Rape Victim Receives 200 Lashes

Saudi punishes gang rape victim with 200 lashes

A court in the ultra-conservative kingdom of Saudi Arabia is punishing a female victim of gang rape with 200 lashes and six months in jail, a newspaper reported on Thursday.

The 19-year-old woman — whose six armed attackers have been sentenced to jail terms — was initially ordered to undergo 90 lashes for “being in the car of an unrelated male at the time of the rape,” the Arab News reported.

But in a new verdict issued after Saudi Arabia’s Higher Judicial Council ordered a retrial, the court in the eastern town of Al-Qatif more than doubled the number of lashes to 200.

A court source told the English-language Arab News that the judges had decided to punish the woman further for “her attempt to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media.”

Saudi Arabia enforces a strict Islamic doctrine known as Wahhabism and forbids unrelated men and women from associating with each other, bans women from driving and forces them to cover head-to-toe in public. Continue.




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Est. October 13 2007

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