A Tory MP has launched an effort to pass a law banning Muslim women from wearing the burka.
Philip Hollobone will attempt to steer legislation through the Commons to regulate the wearing of "certain facial coverings".
The Kettering MP said his Bill would make it illegal for people to cover their faces in public "which would obviously have a big impact for those who wear full-face Islamic veils".
A Spanish court sentenced a Syrian Kurd to three years in prison Wednesday for throwing a shoe at Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in what he called a bid to highlight the plight of Kurds.
The 27-year-old threw the shoe as the visiting Turkish leader was leaving the city hall in the southern city of Seville on February 22, but did not hit him.
18 tombs of the Muslim sector of the Robertsau cemetery in Strasbourg were violated last night by persons unknown that left no trace or message.
The discovery came this morning when the guardian of the 61 tombs arrived.
Establishing high-level cultural institutions in disadvantaged neighborhoods, beyond the usual 'elitist' locations, upgrading the neighborhood, developing a Dutch 'Harvard', companies who sponsor parks and nature reserves, encouraging 'circular migration' instead of closing the doors. These are several points in the vision of the future NL 2023, developed by a group of highly-educated Moroccan-Dutch in an attempt to break through the polarized social debate.
Meat from slaughter without stunning will now be labelled as such following a vote in the European Parliament.
The rule change will affect UK halal and kosher meat suppliers where MEPs decided that meat from non-stunned animals will now have to be mentioned on the label.
Morocco, which is trying to protect itself from Muslim extremists, sent a delegation of female preachers to Belgium last week, in order to convince the Belgian authorities that Moroccan Islam has gone through a real revolution in recent years and is an alternative to the extremist Islam which developed in recent years in Brussels.
The Danish authorities are going to check whether authorities in North Africa foiled a new plot against Kurt Westergaard, the famous Mohammed cartoonist.
Westergaard was attacked once in his home by an axe wielding Somali earlier this year. Another plot was foiled in 2008, when several Tunisian and Moroccans were arrested in Aarhus.
Khat smuggling from the Netherlands provides Somali terrorist organization al-Shabab with millions of Euros. Radio program "Dit is De Dag" (Radio 1) investigated and found very strong indications of this.
I've reported on this issue before, but now a Dutch radio show interviewed Somali khat smugglers who admit that the money goes to al-Shabaab. Unfortunately, this being a radio show, the English speaking Somalis were recorded over with Dutch translation. Still, it's possible to hear a bit of the original. The interesting part beings around 6:30, with the following exchange at around 8:00.
Q: Are they involved in al-Shabab?
A: They're involved in al-Shabab, yes.
Finland will see a new magazine created by young Muslins, in August. The magazine will include matters of daily interest and features ranging from fashion to sport as seen from a Muslim perspective. The staff of the magazine, Umma, says they also want to reach young ethnic Finnish readers.
The idea of a magazine targeted at Muslim youth was generated by the youth committee of Finland's Muslim Council about a year ago. Its editor-in-chief, Bilal Sehli, has been involved from the start. The first issue will appear in August.
The creator of the documentary ''L'islam nel Cuore della Cristianita'. Musulmani d'Italia'' (Islam in the heartland of Christianity. Italy's Moslems) is neither a Moslem nor an Italian. Cameroonian, Jivis Tegno has been living in Italy for eighteen years, has two degrees and is now a multimedial publisher.
The 119-minute documentary took six years' work, involving shooting all over the country, visits to 112 mosques, conversations with imams and politicians, intellectuals and some of the exponents of the world of Islam better known to the media. The author also plans to edit a shorter version of the DVD with translated texts for the Arab countries from whence many of Italys Moslem immigrants originate.
Many in Germany have long been skeptical of immigration. Now, a conservative Berlin politician has proposed requiring immigrants to take an intelligence test before being allowed in. His idea has not been well received.
Germany's conservatives have never been terribly coherent when it comes to immigration. Despite a stubbornly low birth rate and what many consider to be a developing need for skilled foreign labor, members of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) have long been unwilling to roll out the welcome mat.
On Monday, the party once again made a less-than-fortunate foray into the immigration debate. Peter Trapp, a domestic policy expert with the CDU in Berlin, demanded in an interview with the mass-circulation tabloid Bild that would-be immigrants to Germany be given intelligence tests before they are allowed in.
Prime Minister Francois Fillon urged France's Muslims on Monday to reject full face veils as a sectarian caricature of Islam, a week before parliament debates a law banning burqas and niqabs in public.
Inaugurating a mosque in a northwestern Paris suburb, he said French Muslims should combat a tiny radical minority using face veils as a way to combat the integration of a tolerant Islam that respects the separation of church and state.
Leftist anarchists in Berlin have reportedly been harassing Muslim immigrants showing their support for the German football team during the World Cup, tearing down national flags and even setting one on fire.
Another 15 or so specialised police are needed to combat jihadism on the internet, the head of the Federal Police Office believes.
In an interview with the German-language Sonntag newspaper on Sunday, Jean-Luc Vez says jihadists are using the web for a range of purposes, including launching calls for violence, making propaganda and recruiting new members.
Bosnia: Officer killed in attack on police station
A police officer was killed and another seriously injured on Sunday when a bomb exploded behind the police station in the central Bosnian town of Bugojno, reported Radio Sarajevo.
Police arrested Haris Causevic, a member of a radical Islamic Wahhabi movement, who was caught fleeing the scene of the explosion. According to police sources, he admitted to detonating the bomb. While being pursued, Causevic reportedly threw a second bomb at a police patrol, which resulted in minor injuries to five additional police officers.
They weren't all illiterate farmers from the Rif Mountains. The common image of the first guest-workers from Morocco was shattered in a conference in Rabat about 40 years of Moroccan immigration to the Netherlands.
These are the shocking injuries inflicted upon schoolgirl Sureyya Ozkaya during a brutal daylight assault near her Thornton Heath home.
The 14-year-old’s hair was set on fire and her hands and feet were cut with glass during the attack in Grangewood Park, before her attackers smashed her head against a tree and left her bleeding in a bush.
Though the article doesn't mention it, the disappointing sales might be due to the fact that Muslims didn't think the KFC halal label was really 'halal'.
KFC has scrapped its policy of serving halal food only in some of its takeaways, following customer protests.
One hundred of the fast food chain's restaurants removed non-halal items from their menus last year in an attempt to attract Muslim customers.
A woman who was forced off a state-run training program because she wore a long headscarf has now won damages from Stockholm's local authority.
The training course was aimed at leading to work as a cleaner. But when the woman arrived for the start of teaching, in April 2008, she was told that employers would not accept her clothing - and she was struck off the course.
The Danish People's Party (DPP) is demanding that the government intervene in the case of the Netto supermarket branch which had to close due to violence and threats against the employees. Sharp criticism of the mediation efforts between Netto, imams and gang leaders.
The DPP is demanding the government act, and asks Justice Minister Lars Barfoed (K) to intervene in the case of the Netto branch in Blågårdsgade in Nørrebro (Copenhagen), which had to close last week after violence and threats against the employees.
Britain announced plans on Saturday to impose a temporary limit on the number of non-European Union migrants it allows into the country, to avoid an influx of foreign workers ahead of a permanent cap next year.
Government sources said that just 24,100 workers from outside Europe would be allowed into the country before next April, when the permanent cap is expected. That number is a five-percent drop on last year.
On a hot afternoon in early June, an unusual looking bus is parked in the central square of this historic city in eastern France.
Passers-by cast sidelong glances at the brightly colored portraits on its side accompanied by such slogans as “Jews and Muslims say no to discrimination” and “We are more alike than you think.”
It is the friendship bus, a project of the French Jewish-Muslim Friendship group, known by the acronym AJMF.
In the Netherlands, half the Moroccan youth get in trouble with the police by the time they're 22. A third of this group are repeat offenders with more than 5 incidents on their record, according to a new study published in the recent issue of the Tijdschrift voor Criminologie (Journal of Criminology).
To the surprise of the authors, it turns out Moroccan girls commit three times as many crimes as Dutch girls. An multiple offenders are on average not more violent than people who commit a crime every now and then. According to another study in the same issue of TVC, asylum migrants commit more crimes than ethnic Dutch or regular migrants. An evaluation of of both studies, and the question is whether this study can be generalized for Belgium. Not so.
BAFFLED, shaken and finally repelled, the French have watched aghast at the existential drama that unfolded this week in South Africa, on the pitch and off it. World Cup winners in 1998, France were eliminated from this year’s tournament without winning a single game, and flew home in disgrace. But it was the team’s performance off the pitch that so appalled the French, described by the sports minister, Roselyne Bachelot, as a “moral disaster” that had “tarnished the image of France”.
The acceptance of homosexuality in the Netherlands is growing. Religious Protestants and Muslims have the most difficulty with it. Looking at political preference, PVV voters in particular are negative towards gays.
Those are some of the findings from a report of the SCP (Institute for Social Research) about the acceptance of homosexuality in the Netherlands. The study, conducted for former minister Ronald Plasterk (Emancipation), was presented Thursday. In 2008, says the SCP, 9% of the people had a negative attitude towards homosexuality, compared to 15% in 2006.
Archbishop Paul Cremona this morning called for the State to help couples prepare for marriage due to an increase in couples deciding against faith marriages.
Speaking at the opening session of a seminar intended to discuss the role of the family from a Muslim and Christian perspective, organised by the World Islamic Call Society, he also said that the media needed to be used to promote messages in favour of marriage stability.
Spain's upper house of parliament has called on the government to introduce a ban on wearing the Muslim full-body veil in public, but the governing Socialists have dismissed the move as political point-scoring.
MPs from 47 countries have unanimously voted against a general ban on the wearing of the burka in public.
The Parliamentary Assembly of Europe's human rights watchdog, the Council of Europe, passed a resolution warning that if governments imposed such a ban they would be denying women "who genuinely and freely desire to do so" their right to cover their faces.
Members of a Jewish dance troupe were pelted with stones and insulted during a neighborhood festival in Sahlkamp, Hannover (Germany).
Politicians and local associations responded in outrage and disbelief to the antisemitic attacks in Sahlkamp. A dance troupe of the Liberal Jewish Community in Hannover was pelted with stones and insulted on Saturday during a district festival. After correlating pictures, 30 children and teenagers of mostly Lebanese, Palestinian, Iraqi, Iranian and possibly also Turkish origin, were involved in throwing pebbles and calling insults at the eight adult dancers. The Jewish folklore group were forced to leave the stage, one dancer was hit in the leg and suffered a bruise. The international cultural festival continued after a break, the police were not notified.
Immigrants and their descendants in Denmark are increasingly leaving democracy. From 1997 to 2009 the share of foreigners who voted in municipal elections fell by 11% in Copenhagen and 17% in Aarhus.
This according to a historically extensive study, conducted by the Ministry of Integration.
The Minhaj-ul-Quran mosque in Oslo is promoting a fatwa condemning extremism in the name of Islam.
"Terrorism, radicalism and extremism in the name of Islam is an abuse of our religion. We want to show the image of moderate Islam," says Hassan Qadri.
The Islamic scholar from Pakistan is on a tour of Europe to explain a new and controversial Islamic ruling. A so-called 'fatwa' against extremism and extreme groups.
Language schools are failing to teach Danish to women with an immigrant background causing issues with the integration process
A new study carried out by the Rockwool Foundation has revealed that a fifth of immigrant women who take Danish classes fail to finish their course and take exams.
Arab women living in Italy have expressed their support for five female journalists who resigned from the Arab TV network, Al-Jazeera, after the network criticised their clothing. Dounia Ettaib, president of the Arab Women's Association in Italy, told Adnkronos International (AKI) she also wanted the Doha-based network to guarantee journalists' rights in the Middle East.
On Sunday Thousands of Chinese immigrants in Paris took to the streets to protest their lack of security. They say they are being mugged and robbed by gangs of 'youth' and that the police aren't doing anything against it. The protest slogan was "Security for all, solidarity with the Chinese of Paris". Signs with the slogans and "I love Belleville" shirts were handed out in advance by the organizers.
Updated: Translated article replaced by one from the English-language press.
A Swedish citizen has been arrested in the Stockholm suburb of Rinkeby on suspicion of terrorist offences. The man is believed to have connections to Somalian terror group al-Shabaab, which is linked to al-Qaeda.
Germany aims to tackle a growing threat from Islamic extremists with an exit programme modelled on assistance for repentant neo-Nazis, authorities said Monday.
"We plan to offer a hotline and a website for people who have fallen under the influence of fundamentalists, Islamists or terrorists," Heinz Fromm, head of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the domestic intelligence agency, told reporters.
The new books by authors Niina Hakalahti and Kari Levola can be regarded as a turning point in the Finnish children’s literature that deals with tolerance. They bring up the multicultural main characters already in the title of the book.
When Sami Khedira and his Under-21 team‑mates held aloft the European Championship trophy last summer, after humbling England 4–0 in the final, they dreamed of changing the face of German football. Little did they know that their opportunity would come so quickly.
Turkish newspaper Milliyet reports that the Dutch municipality Zaandam made a big blunder by giving a cookbook as a gift. The cookbook described Kurdistan, and omitted Turkey.
Gangs of youths attacked police officers after an anti-racist march in east London, Scotland Yard said.
Cordons were set up to stop people going up Whitechapel Road because officers feared random attacks on members of the public.
The scenes followed a march, organised by Unite Against Fascism (UAF), that attracted several thousand people.
The Brussels prosecutors asked the correctional court to intern (in a mental hospital) Allan D., in his thirties. the man stabbed a Moroccan stranger at the Brussels Zuid station on January 2, 2010. He admitted during his arrest that he did it out of racist motives, and added that he had originally intended to attack more victims. The man is asking for a harsh prison sentence.
Women in Russia's volatile Muslim Chechnya region said on Friday that police had targeted them with paintball pellets for not wearing headscarves, outraging rights activists.
The attacks highlight tension over efforts by Chechnya's firebrand Moscow-backed leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, to enforce Muslim-inspired rules that in some cases violate Russia's constitution.
Following reports that Jews couldn't walk outside without being cursed and jeered, the Dutch Jewish broadcaster (Joodse Omroep) sent three Jewish-looking men, Rabbi Lody van de Kamp and two younger men, to walk the streets of Amsterdam, filming them with a hidden camera. The result? Hitler salutes and jeers.
Compulsory English language tests will be introduced for migrants applying to come to the UK to join their partner or marry, the government announced today.
From Autumn 2010 all non-European migrants will have to demonstrate a basic command of English that allows them to cope with everyday life before they are granted a visa.
The Swedish Social Democrats established a special section on their site (h/t Snaphanen) for Muslim social democrats, which includes a manifesto, information about their journal "Islam and Politics" and a clip from a conference the party held in the fall about why 70% of Muslims vote for the party, and why Muslims should vote for left-wing (red) parties. The manifesto is available in Swedish, English, Arabic and Somali.
The Gothenburg resident suspected of conspiring to commit terrorist acts might have been lured to Somalia. He and his girlfriend called home and said they had no choice but to stay with the terrorist movement. Either he managed to escape or he got orders from al-Shabaab which he was supposed to carry out in Sweden, says an acquaintance of the family.
The 22 year old, who is a Swedish citizen but is originally from Somalia, was changed on May 21 in the Gothenburg court of conspiring to commit terrorist acts in Gothenburg, other places in Sweden and Somalia.
A photography exhibition by Ahmed Krausen, a Danish-Muslim photographer, at Sharjah Museum of Islamic Civilization, was inaugurated by Shaikh Khalid bin Saqr bin Hamad Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Public Works Department, on Thursday.
The exhibition, to be held till August 14, is titled ‘Dunya — Glimpses of Muslim life in Europe’ and aims at providing an insight into the lives of ordinary Muslims in Europe and connecting their lives to the Muslim community in the Arab world.
In the UK, local Sharia councils have been operating for many years, but in 2007 the Muslim Arbitration Tribunals (MAT) were established. Recognized by the UK's justice ministry and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Sharia councils were officially allowed to judge in civil - not criminal - cases, based on the British Arbitration Act of 1996. They judge cases relating to economy, divorce, domestic violence, inheritance and forced marriage - with the framework of British law.
"It's probable that this will exist in Norway. It wouldn't surprise me if it already exists. Imams counsel Muslims today, and it's natural that they use Sharia because it's the legal tradition they're accustomed to," says director Tor Langbach of the Courts Administration.
About five thousand people have protested in Pristina, the capital of Kosovo, against a government decision to ban religious symbols including Muslim headscarves in public schools.
Many demonstrators came from all over the country. About 90 percent of Kosovo’s population are Muslims, but most have western values. The former Serbian province adopted a secular Constitution after declaring independence two years ago.
Serbia's Islamic Community on Saturday protested against a photomontage published in the daily Blic and demanded a "symbolic" compensation of 100 million euros (124 million dollars).
Daily Blic ran a photomontage of the leader of the Islamic community Muamer Zukorlic dressed in an Orthodox Christian bishop robe.
Immigrants in Finland will soon be entitled to choose 50 representatives for a planned “Immigrant Parliament of Finland”. The first elections for the body will coincide with next year’s elections of the Finnish Parliament.
Founders of the Immigrant Parliament say that the planned body will be the first in the world. It has no official status in Finland, but organisers hope that it could influence public opinion.
Fifteen-year-old pupils from schools with high ethnic diversity perform worse than comparable pupils from schools with homogenous student populations. This applies not just to the immigrant children, but also to the pupils from the country in question. For the latter group, the negative effect is strongest in school systems with a hierarchy of school types, such as the Dutch and German systems. What’s more, the number and origin of the immigrant pupils also plays an important role. Having a higher proportion of pupils from Islamic countries at a given school negatively influences the performance of all pupils at that school. But in contrast, a higher share of pupils from South and East Asia has a positive effect. This is just one of Jaap Dronkers’s conclusions from his empirical research using international PISA data, which he discusses in his inaugural lecture.
According to the largest labour federation, the SAK, roughly one third of immigrant workers have joined unions.
"In some sectors, half of foreign-born employees have joined, but I'd estimate that 30 to 40 percent of working immigrants belong to unions," says the SAK's immigration expert, Helena Hämäläinen.
The radical party in Geneva (FDP) want to revise the law on external manifestations of worship. They want to ban the residents of the canton from wearing any religious clothing. The ban will not affect tourists.
A Kosovar man was arrested overseas and faces charges of participation in a terror plot involving several suspects from North Carolina, federal authorities said Thursday.
Bajram Asllani, 29, a resident of Mitrovica, Kosovo, is charged with providing material support to terrorists and conspiring to murder, kidnap, maim and injure people abroad, the Department of Justice said in a statement.
A project to spy on two Muslim areas in Birmingham using more than 200 CCTV cameras has been dramatically halted after an investigation by the Guardian revealed it was a counterterrorism initiative.
Last year, at least six youths from the Gothenburg area were forced into marriage against their will, newspaper Göteborgs-Posten writes. Five girls and one boy were married off; three of the girls were eighteen years old, while two girls and the boy were underage.
If it would be up to Ahmed Marcouch, violence against Jews would be handled by sending in so-called 'decoy Jews'.
The percent of immigrant parliament members has increased slightly in the recent elections in comparison with 2006: from 8% to 10.7%. the percentage of women also increased: from 36.7% to 40.6%. This according to a study published by the Centre for Political Participation (IPP).
At the end of a two-day visit to Serbia on Wednesday, Bosnia's Muslim leader Sulejman Tihic, said the two countries should forget the past and look to the future and better mutual relations.
Noway: Krekar press conference tapes published
Last week Mullah Krekar held a press conference for the foreign press in Norway. The foreign press were expected to ask their questions in Norwegian while Krekar answered in Arabic via translator.
Norwegian broadcaster NRK and Aftenposten both published a translation/summary of Krekar's statements. NRK's is an independent translation. The Norwegian security service is meanwhile working on getting a full transcript.
Almost half of the criminal utterances on the internet are aimed at Jews. The number of incidents in the Netherlands is high. Antisemitism is socially acceptable, and everybody knows it.
In the former De Baarsjes district in Amsterdam-West, in the year 2010, there's a hidden synagogue: Sjoel West (West Synagogue). Every week on the Sabbath, 25-30 Jews come to the services, but the majority of the Jews don't want the synagogue to be noticeable as a synagogue, for fear of problems, discrimination and the cursing of Moroccan-Dutch street riffraff in the neighborhood. In the past Jews who wore a kippah were sometimes pelted with stones. In the building where the synagogue is located there's no Star of David or name on the front, and the synagogue has a secret address. When the bell rings, the door isn't opened just like that, and two Jews will always check who's standing by the door. Besides the shamash (sexton), Erwin Brugmans, all the Jews who come to Sjoel West cover their kippah with a hat. They don't want to be recognized as Jews.
When 17-year-old Shainez Dib announced she wanted to start wearing a hijab as a deeper expression of her religious faith, her mother advised against it, telling her daughter she was not yet mature enough. Just because she could, since she was now attending a Muslim private school, didn’t mean she should.
Paris police on Tuesday banned a controversial "pork sausage and wine" street party planned by extremist groups to combat what they saw as the "Islamisation" of a city neighbourhood.
The event was planned for Friday evening at a time when the district's streets are usually jammed with Muslims coming out of mosques and just before Algeria were due to play England in the football World Cup.
Muslims who become Christians in the Netherlands often have to deal with persecution. Harassment by former coreligionists are on the order of the day, and death threats come regularly. The Gave foundation is sounding the alarm. Other sources confirm the threats.
Anti-racism activists on Monday condemned plans to hold a "pork sausage and wine" party in a multi-ethnic Paris district to protest against what the organisers call the area's "Islamisation."
SOS Racisme called for the event scheduled for Friday in the Goutte d'Or area of north Paris to be banned because it sent out a "message of hate and of violence towards groups of people because of their real or supposed origins."
Barcelona plans to be the first large city in Spain to ban the use of the full-face Islamic veil in public buildings, its mayor announced Monday.
Jordi Hereu said he will sign a decree which will apply in all public spaces such as the city hall and municipal covered markets and creches.
Growing numbers of Afghan children are making a difficult and dangerous overland journey to Europe, travelling without their parents and exposed to dangers and human rights abuses, a new United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) report has found. The report presents recommendations on how governments, including the government of Afghanistan, should respond to this complex issue.
Ghana's chief national imam is on his way to Denmark, where he will try to improve dialog and mutual understanding between European and African Muslims, and between Muslims and Christians in general.
Arfan Q. Bhatti has the distinction of being Norway's first terrorism suspect. His wife, Marjam Salvesen Bhatti, now runs a Jihadist website, much like Malika el-Aroud, the "mother of al-Qaeda in Europe".
Bishop Demetrio Fernandez of Cordoba, Spain, affirmed on June 12 that any “joint use” by Muslims wishing to worship at the Catholic cathedral in that city is but “a euphemism that means: Catholics, get out! We will not leave, except if we are kicked out, since for 16 centuries there has been Christian worship here.” The cathedral, part of which was a mosque for several hundred years until the late 1400s, has been a Catholic place of worship ever since; it is regarded as one of the architectural gems of Europe.
A couple who have been wrongly accused of winning £84million in the Euro lottery have spoken of their nightmare.
They claim they have had people knocking on their door wanting their mortgages repaid and others asking for new gold teeth.
The constant barrage of requests in the past few weeks has left them angry.
The riots and fires in Rinkeby had just one purpose: to entice the police to the area.
"We want revenge. We are at war with the police," says Badr, 25, one of the 50 youth who participated in the riots Tuesday night.
On Thursday VG printed a feature article about the head of Islam Net, with the headline "Holding course in extreme Islam in Norwegian college" spread all over the front page [part of the article series here]. Several Muslims responded to that.
Italy's constitutional court has rejected controversial legislation imposing stiffer penalties on illegal immigrants who commit crimes in Italy. A majority of court judges late on Thursday ruled it is unconstitutional to hand down prison sentences and fines three times more severe for illegal immigrants found guilty of crimes.
Muslims in Venray are disturbed by artwork in the Limburg city. In any case, that's what PvdA municipal council member Hayrettin Ünüvar claims.
A controversial board member of Bundesbank has come under fire for claiming immigrants are making Germany ‘dumber in a simple way’.
Thilo Sarrazin told a business group in Frankfurt that people arriving in the country from Turkey, the Middle East and Africa are less educated than those from other nations.
Yesterday Mullah Krekar held a press conference, for the foreign press in Norway. He didn't want to speak to the Norwegian press, whom he says are his enemies, and slipped out of the room before they could catch him outside.
During the press conference he threatened anybody who might be responsible for his death.
German teachers are to get guidelines on handling with pupils the issue of forced marriages, the government said Friday after a spate of cases hit the headlines.
"Forced marriage is an infringement of human rights," Maria Boehmer, the government's commissioner for immigration and integration, said.
The course series "Da'Wah - how to hold dialog with non-Muslims", has been held every Friday in a classroom at Oslo University College since winter. Islam Net is the organizer. The course, about spreading Islam, is free, but requires registration.
On Friday, May 7, VG visited the course, with permission from Rector Sissel Østberg. VG wanted to be present and write about the course.
Russia’s Ministry of Interior has for the first time revealed the extent of its casualties in the North Caucasus.
An advert issued by Northamptonshire County Council asking for a "female, white and non-Muslim" taxi driver has been labelled "deeply disturbing and outrageous" by a Muslim faith group in the county.
“Salaam!” the pupils shout.
"Hale shoma chetor hast?" asks teacher Zahra Houshangi. It means, “How are you?”
It is the time for a lesson in Persian at the Central Espoo School. The pupils take out their books and start to work on their grammar exercises.
Dutch organizations standing up for the Muslim minority are full of disbelief about the PVV's great victory.
"Today is a dramatic day for Moroccans in the Netherlands," Farid Azarkan, chairman of the SMN (Dutch Moroccan Alliance) told elsevier.nl.
A sixth of the weddings in Belgium today are 'mixed'. Ten years ago, just 12% of the Belgians married a foreigner. This according to figures from the National Institute for Statistics.
Moscow's lawmakers have set their minds to fight xenophobia by banning the media from mentioning the nationality, race and religion of criminals.
The measure, intended to tackle the level of hate-crime in the city, is designed to prevent generalizations about certain groups in society. For example, talking about a crime committed by a person from Dagestan, Russian journalists will not be allowed to say “Dagestani” or “coming from North Caucasus,” but they would rather refer to a “person born in Dagestan.”
Pre-election polls showed him with 18 seats, but Geert Wilders surprised everybody and is set to get 24.
The coalition talks are expected to take some time. Would the PVV be in the next government? Take the poll below.
Prince Charles yesterday urged the world to follow Islamic 'spiritual principles' in order to protect the environment.
In an hour-long speech, the heir to the throne argued that man's destruction of the world was contrary to the scriptures of all religions - but particularly those of Islam.
The polls are closing - exit polls and results to be coming soon.
In a dramatic change of policy the Swedish government is planning to allow refugees to be gainfully employed from the day of arrival. The labour market has been closed to asylum seekers for the first few months and refugees have been relying on social handouts for their living expenses.
So why the sudden U-turn in migration and labour policy? Azariah Kiros also wondered and caught up with Migration Minister Tobias Billström aboard a train.
AFP reports about the continuing saga (see here, here, here and here) of a Belgian maths teacher who insists on wearing a headscarf (h/t Islamophobia Watch):
A Belgian high school on Tuesday sacked a Muslim maths teacher after she insisted she would continue to wear the burqa while taking classes.
For the second night in a row, there were riots in the Rinkeby and Tensta suburbs of Stockholm. About 50 youth set fire to cars, the mentor program at the Rinkeby school, and a police department. Monday night, two young men in their were arrested after fire was set to a bank. Stones were thrown at the police and fire-brigade as well.
The riots started after a group of young people were refused entrance Monday to a graduation school party for the 9th graders. Police showed up and one shot was fired in the air. One person says: "They shot in front of the children, that was when everything started. Since then we started throwing stones."
A directory of the 100 most "women-friendly" mosques in England is launched today, claiming to be "the start of the process to broaden and deepen the engagement of Muslim women in British mosques".
Polling stations opened across the Netherlands Wednesday for elections dominated by Europe's economic woes and led by the centre-right liberal party with its plans to slash public spending.
The PVV led in opinion polls just a few months ago, but its main campaign issue, to stop the "Islamisation of the Netherlands", has been eclipsed by budget concerns amid Europe's economic downturn.
According to the LSVb and ISO student unions, less young Muslims would go to study if student grants would be changed into a social loan scheme, as the PvdA, D66 and VVD parties want to do. Islam prohibits paying interest. This according to a report by Elsevier today.
New figures released by the Swedish National Agency for Education reveal that foreign-born children are still less likely than children born in Sweden to succeed in school. They also show that there are large differences depending on where the children came from. The study showed that after completing secondary school, only 25 percent of Somali-born students are ready for senior high school, compared to 82 percent of Finnish-born students.
The Indonesian ambassador to Russia and Muslim leaders opened an exhibition of "halal" (allowed for Muslims) products, the very first of its kind in Russia, the International Moscow Halal Expo 2010, at Crocus Expo, Moscow, from June 7 to 9, 2010.
Kurt Westergaard, the famous Mohammed cartoonist is retiring.
his final cartoon is now up for auction. The money will go to a project in Ghana, encouraging children to learn through football.
Stripping, bare legs and and erotic texts don't go with Muhammed's final resting place, the holy city of Medina in Saudi Arabia
And according to several sources in B.T. it was this combination which caused a small group of 2nd generation immigrants to throw eggs at the stage Saturday, when pop star Medina gave a concert to a partying audience in the Copenhagen suburb of Ishøj. (see clip here)
Representatives of two immigrant minorities believed to have been involved in Sunday’s group fight at Linnanmäki have sharply condemned the melee. The incident has highlighted tensions that sometimes emerge between Somalis and Kurds in Finland. Some Somalis have taken issue with the dress and habits of Kurds, who are often fairly relaxed in their interpretation of Islam.
Prisoners are converting to Islam to win benefits and gain the protection of powerful Muslim gangs inside jails, the Chief Inspector of Prisons has warned.
Up to a third of Muslim prisoners adopted the religion while serving their sentence, a new report by inspectors has found.
Counterterrorism police have targeted hundreds of surveillance cameras on two Muslim areas of Birmingham, enabling them to track the precise movements of people entering and leaving the neighbourhoods.
A campaign to improve the image of Islam has been launched after an opinion poll found that more than half of British people associate the religion with extremism and terrorism.
"Inspired by Muhammad" aims to promote Islam as a faith which contributes positively to British society.
France has been thwarted in its destiny of greatness by the English and is now doomed to collapse into civil war between Christians and Muslim “barbarians”.
You might think that such a prophecy — articulated by one of the country’s top thinkers — would banish its author to the lunatic fringe. Yet Eric Zemmour is earning fame and fortune charting his country’s decline, with his latest gloomy book Mélancolie Française flying off the shelves.
A rightwing-backed move to deport foreign criminals more readily has come under fire from the head of the Federal Migration Office who says it's “disproportionate”.
Director Alard du Bois-Reymond said in an interview published on Saturday that committing even relatively trivial crimes would be reason enough to expel up to four times as many foreigners as today. Currently about 350-400 foreign criminals get sent home each year.
Yemeni security forces have arrested more than 30 foreign nationals on suspicion of having links with Al-Qaeda, among them three Frenchmen, an American and a Briton, a security official said on Sunday.
France's official Muslim council has warned the government not to expect it to impose a planned ban on full face veils for women that legal experts argue will be unconstitutional and police predict will be unenforceable.
A study conducted by the German authorities has found that the more devout young Muslims become, the more prone to violence they get. The study says the phenomenon is not due to Islam itself, but to the way it is taught.
A day after Cypriot religious and political leaders lashed out at Turkey, whose troops have occupied northern Cyprus since 1974, Pope Benedict XVI on Saturday met briefly with a Muslim religious leader from the Turkish North.
Glenn Audenaert, chief of Federal Judiciary Police, interviewed on Phara, June 4th, 2010 (~42:00), via Luc Van Braekel's blog.
Two men and a woman have been arrested in rival demonstrations held in Cardiff.
About 500 anti-fascist protesters marched from Cardiff Bay to City Hall in opposition to a demonstration by the Welsh Defence League (WDL).
WDL organisers said their estimated 200-strong demonstration was against Islamic extremism.
Starting from age 5 or 6, more and more little Norwegian girls are being sent to school with a hijab.
The Muslim headgear which covers the hair, is becoming a more common sight in elementary schools in Oslo, also in the 5-10 age group.
Over the past few months, reporting on Turkish PM announcements in Europe, I've noticed a certain trend, which led to a nagging question: Does Turkey dream of being an empire again?
Update: Typo fix. Last paragraph says 'state of Israel', not 'state of Islam'.
Israel's attack on a Turkish aid ship, where nine were killed, has made an impression on both Danish Jews and Muslims.
The conflict will dominate Friday prayers in the country's mosques and the serve in the Jewish synagogue in Copenhagen.
Nuremberg: German butchers, halal meat
They have age-old Franconian names, eat sausage rolls for breakfast and worship on Sundays. But the Bärlein-Denterlein family of Nuremberg are butchers who follow strict Islamic codes. They've long been one of the biggest producers of döner kebab meat in northern Bavaria.
This article was prepared by the Islam in Europe blog - islamineurope.blogspot.com
By the city hall subway station in Fürth, three old men stand in front of a small fast-food stand, drinking tea and chatting in Turkish. Behind the sticker-plastered window a young man sharpens two giant knives in front of colossal cones of meat slowly rotating on spits, the makings of that king of fast food in Germany: the döner kebab.
It's a scene that can be witnessed at thousands of similar mini-restaurants across Germany, particularly in Berlin or in the Ruhr Valley. But this one is slightly different. One of the stickers on the window reads: "Quality meat from Bärlein-Denterlein." An age-old Franconian name on a traditional Turkish Imbiss (snack bar)? The incongruity is like finding a Chinese restaurant called "Acropolis."
The name remains a mystery even after a few inquiries. The slaughterhouse is a "Muslim business under Christian operation," it is said. Further investigation leads one to the industrial area of Neustadt, a town 45 minutes northwest of Nuremberg in northern Bavaria. Above an entrance is the firm's insignia: an ornamented ox head. It looks like a logo for any other Teutonic slaughterhouse. But the family business has long earned a large portion of its revenue from Turkish and Kurdish immigrants. Ninety-five percent of the slaughterhouse's business goes to döner kebab stands and Turkish supermarkets in the area.
Musa, who works with Ömer and Osman as butchers in the slaughterhouse, has long finished his day's work. Before he kills an animal, he says a short prayer -- a single one for each animal. Mostly it's the same sentence: "Bismillahi Allahu Akbar" (In the name of Allah, Allah is great).
"Just as Muslim ritual prescribes," says Bärlein-Denterlein. "Many think that the Koran only requires that animals be butchered in a certain way," he says. "But what's important is the prayer toward Mecca. A lot of Muslims don't know that."
Bärlein-Denterlein knows the direction of Mecca from Neustadt. Recently, during Eid al-Adha -- a Muslim holiday commemorating Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son -- a few customers rolled out their prayer mats in the neighboring garden. Since then, he knows that when you look directly out the slaughterhouse's front door, you look toward Mecca.
Aside from the ritual prayers, the business works for Islamic correctness in other ways. If calves, lambs and cows take their last steps at the Bärlein-Denterlein shop, chicken parts arrive pre-butchered every day at 3 a.m. And the most popular slaughtered meat in Germany -- pork -- is taboo for Muslims, so the business that courts them keeps its distance, too.
Privately, of course, Bärlein-Denterlein lives like most Germans in Franconia. "In our home, everyone eats bratwurst in a roll or sausage for breakfast. Our Muslim employees accept that as well." What they wouldn't accept is for halal meat to come in contact with pork. "That's why we don't slaughter pigs," he says. "One can't entirely rule out that a knife trimming a döner would still have traces of pig's blood."
Despite such diligence, the Bärlein-Denterleins often straddle two cultures. One day a number of Turkish Muslims appeared in front of the door wanting proof that no pigs were slaughtered on the site. A little later they left satisfied. But there were also German animal-rights activists who harassed the business over cruelty to animals. "Once they were convinced that the animals were anesthetized before the slaughter, they quickly laid down their guns," says Bärlein-Denterlein.
Source: Spiegel (English)
The European Union's ministers for the interior and migration have decided to develop an EU-wide strategy for taking care of unaccompanied child refugees, according to Sweden's justice department.
The plan, which was first presented in May, includes measures to guard against risky migration and human trafficking. It also aims to educate EU member countries about the unaccompanied minors and ease their transition back to their home countries if asylum is rejected.
Source: SR (English)
Yesterday evening, police apprehended a man after a judge and a clerk had been shot dead in a small-claims court in central Brussels. The judicial authorities have confirmed that the man is indeed the lone gunman who committed the court murders yesterday. Apparently, the man was driven by a feeling of vengeance.
More than one in 10 French people admit to being racist and many have prejudicial views of immigrants, homosexuals, blacks, Arab and Jews, according to a survey released Sunday.
Cyprus fears a flood of Palestinian immigrants from the Gaza Strip owing to Israel's refusal to lift its blockade, Interior Minister Neoklis Sylikiotis said on Thursday.
This article was prepared by the Islam in Europe blog - islamineurope.blogspot.com
"The new developments in the Middle East lead us to fear that more and more Palestinians from the Gaza Strip will seek refuge in Cyprus," he told reporters on arrival for a meeting with EU counterparts in Luxembourg.
"We have already seen more than 2,000 Palestinians coming in from Iraq, and soon we are going to have more and more refugees," he underlined.
Sylikiotis said he would raise his fears with fellow European Union home ministers seeking greater load-sharing.
Source: France24 (English)
Educators in Finland want to improve communication between immigrant families and schools. In the cities of Turku and Tampere, special consultant teachers work as mediators between homes and schools.
Swedish artist Elisabeth Ohlson-Wallin is accusing the Muslim of World Culture in Gothenburg of backing out of their arrangement to show her pro-LGBT project "Jerusalem". The project deals with the religious oppression of LGBT people.
The museum responds: that being nunaced is not cowardly, and that they wanted to give religion a voice in the discussion as well.
Several parents of children in the Kleine Kunstenaar kindergarten in Houthalen (Belgium) started a petition since their children are being forced to eat halal on a school trip.
Street walkers in Cartagena, on Spain's southern Mediterranean coast, have complained that the imam of a local mosque has launched a campaign of intimidation to get them off the streets.
Dialog between Danes and Muslims, that's the goal of the Islamic Faith Society when they invite people to an open house in their mosque in Copenhagen next week, says spokesperson Bettina Meisner.
The radical Islamic group Hizb ut-Tahrir started a campaign urging Dutch Muslims not to vote in the parliamentary elections (June 9th), the organization announced on a special website they set up for this.
In his June 4, 2009 Cairo speech, U.S. President Barack Obama emphasized that Muslim women in the U.S. are free to don the hijab. He said: "...Freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one's religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it."
Obama's statements triggered strong criticism among Arab intellectuals in France, where for the past few years there has been an ongoing debate about the permissibility of wearing the veil in public.
The Dutch Amin Abou Rashed (43), who was arrested by Israeli commandos on the 'freedom flotilla' by the coast of Gaza, is a top official in the Hamas terror organization, according to intelligence services.
Keep in mind this is an online-poll.
More than 20,000 potential voters filled in in the Stem Advies Nieuwe Nederlanders [voting guide for New Dutch], 15,000 of them in the first weekend. STANN, the voting guide which zooms in for 'New Dutch' [ed: immigrants] on important issues, was filled in by as many ethnic Dutch as immigrants.
The results provide remarkable conclusions.
The main group representing Albania's Muslim majority population says it is suing a journalist who suggesting the government should ban their faith.
The ban on the full veil - specifically the burka and niqab - in public buildings in Lleida (Spain), has caused several municipalities in Catalonia to try and copy it.
A woman attacked a Muslim woman in Basel (Switzerland). The Swiss had a racist motive for her act. She made it clear to the Muslim woman that she wasn't happy with her headscarf.
The Turkish woman, aged 29, lodged a complaint for racial discrimination. The Muslim woman had just stepped off the tram with her daughter and niece when she was attacked. The prosecutor is looking for witnesses to the incident.
The anti-Israel demonstration has been going on for a quarter of an hour, when you feel that it will come to blows. The anger of the about 500 demonstrates getting clearer with the shouted slogans. "Israel murder!" Members of the riot police take out shields and helmets from the cars.
Update: Fixed the article to read millions, not billions. (thanks to an alert reader)
International terrorism is financed from Belgium. In 2009 the police confiscated 7.43 million euro. The money was used to commit attacks and to financially support terrorist organizations.