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Turkey: ignoring migrant deaths is modern barbarism

Selasa 22 Januari 2019 10:16 WIB
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Turkey: ignoring migrant deaths is modern barbarism
Turkey
Ankara, NU Online
Turkey on Sunday slammed the international system for failing to address the international migration issue and its tragic consequences, including over 100 migrants who just died in the Mediterranean Sea.

"The international system, by staying silent in the face of this persistent drama and failing to find a solution, is the modern face of barbarism," Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said on Twitter.

Kalin cited the death Saturday of some 117 irregular migrants after the boat carrying them sank off Libya.

After the incident, Italian President Sergio Mattarella expressed his "deep sorrow for the tragedy that has taken place in the Mediterranean."

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates that last year more than 2,200 migrants died or went missing trying to cross the Mediterranean. (Reuters/Masdar)
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Ahad 13 Januari 2019 22:41 WIB
Saudi Arabia issues 2.78 million Umrah visas so far
Saudi Arabia issues 2.78 million Umrah visas so far
Hajj
Jeddah, NU Online
The number of Umrah visas issued this year has reached 2,785,790, of which 2,346,429 pilgrims have arrived in the Kingdom, according to data provided by the Hajj and Umrah Ministry, Arabnews.com reported.

There are 345,114 pilgrims still in the Kingdom, with 233,910 in Makkah and 111,204 in Madinah.

Most pilgrims — 2,122,424 — came to the Kingdom by air, while 213,121 entered by land and 10,884 arrived by sea.

The largest number of pilgrims are from Pakistan (637,745) followed by Indonesia (420,410), India (292,607), Malaysia (135,895), Yemen (128,618), Egypt (73,179), Turkey (65,970), the UAE (59,855) and Bangladesh (57,701).

The Vision 2030 reform plan aims to attract more than 30 million Umrah pilgrims, and provide them with excellent services and an outstanding experience.

Last year, the ministry launched a weekly indicator whereby authorities can track the number of pilgrims coming into the Kingdom, and in turn enrich their experiences by providing high-quality services. (Masdar)
Ahad 6 Januari 2019 9:38 WIB
Xinjiang displays evidence of violent attacks in 1992-2015
Xinjiang displays evidence of violent attacks in 1992-2015
Uighur Muslims
Urumqi, NU Online
The Xinjiang Autonomous Authority displayed evidences of attacks and violent clashes in China`s western province during 1992-2015 at a hall of Exhibition on Major Violent Terrorist Attack Cases in Xinjiang, in Urumqi, Xinjiang`s capital city.

Photographs of victims, records of closed-circuit television (CCTV), firearms, sharp weapons, and hand-made guns and bombs were kept and displayed in the building.

"We began the construction of the display room since 2014, and it began operations in December," Deputy Director General of Publication of the China Communist Party for the Xinjiang Regional Committee Shi Lei informed Antara here on Thursday.

However, Shi said, the exhibition building was not opened to the public to avoid negative impact on the locals, especially juveniles and those from the working-age group.

"If there are certain communities, including the world`s human rights organizations, we will surely be glad to accept them," he remarked.

The exhibition hall is expected to end the polemics on Uighur and answer global questions on the issue.

The authority displayed photographs and videos on violent attacks not only in Xinjiang but also in other regions in China, including in Kunming, Yunnan Province, and an attempt of suicide bombing in Beijing.

Pictures of victims are displayed around the large wall of the exhibition, with some parts of them being blurred. In some corners of the hall, they roll video clips on violent attacks in various places, such as the police station, government offices, roads, market, mosque, and other public places.

Hundreds of sharp weapons, firearms, and hand-made bombs seized by the authority from the attackers are also displayed in the hall.

Photographs and videos of the attacks in Xinjiang have shown that some victims of the attacks were the Uighurs living in most areas in the province bordering with Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kirgizstan, and Pakistan.

"As you see, there were an imam of a mosque and his family as well as some police personnel, who fell victims to the series of terrorist attacks in Xinjiang," he stated.

Hence, Shi emphasized that the 23 years of violence in Xinjiang could not be linked to a certain religion or ethnic group, and the local government`s crackdown measures did not target a certain ethnic group, religion, or race.

"All forms of terrorism are crimes, as terrorism and radicalism in Xinjiang did not select their targets from a certain ethnic or religion," Shi stated.

The United Nations and several Western countries have highlighted the Xinjiang government`s measures against the Uighur ethnic group.

They accused China of violating human rights, especially on the issue of the re-education camp that China calls as a "Vocational Education Center."

The Chinese authorities also refused to give German Human Rights Commissioner Barbel Kofler an access to the camp in early December 2018.

China`s alleged human rights violations in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) has continuously been echoed by such human rights organizations as Amnesty International.

As revealed in its official website, Amnesty International reported that China has continuously conducted repression under "anti-separatism" or "counter-terrorism" campaigns in the Xinjiang and Tibetan-populated areas.

In a statement that it released on Sept 24, 2018, Amnesty International estimated that there were up to one million Uighur Muslims being held in what it called "internment camps in Xinjiang".

The organization, which supports a global movement for campaigning human rights protection, urged Beijing to "end its campaign of systematic repression and shed light on the fate of the Uighur Muslims arbitrarily detained in XUAR.

In a report that it submitted to the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination`s 96th session in August 2018, Amnesty International had ever urged China to "respect and ensure the rights of Tibetans, Uighurs, and other ethnic minorities to freedom of opinion and expression, peaceful assembly, association, movement, and religion and belief, as well as respect for their distinct culture, language and traditions."

Beijing`s alleged human rights abuses against the Uighurs in XUAR have triggered demonstrations in different parts of the world, including Indonesia.

Hundreds of Indonesian Muslims staged a peaceful rally in front of China`s embassy in Jakarta on Dec 21, 2018 to echo their demands for justice and freedom of the Uighurs.

China denied all reports on alleged human rights violations in the region. (Antara/Masdar)
Rabu 2 Januari 2019 8:58 WIB
World Hijab Day encourages women to voice their choice
World Hijab Day encourages women to voice their choice
Hijab
Ankara, NU Online
World Hijab Day is all set to launch its 2019 campaign on Wednesday, aiming to encourage women to "voice their choice" of wearing the hijab, according to the founder of the annual event.

"#FreeInHijab is the much needed hashtag for our current global situation where women in hijab are labeled by media as oppressed and symbolically imprisoned," Nazma Khan told Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview ahead of the campaign launch.

"Through this hashtag, women are encouraged to voice their choice of wearing the hijab; thus dispelling common misconceptions," Khan added.

World Hijab Day, created in 2013 to encourage women of all religions and backgrounds to wear the hijab in support of Muslim women.

It is celebrated worldwide every year on Feb. 1.

In 2017, World Hijab Day became a nonprofit organization, with a mission to fight discrimination against Muslim women through awareness and education, according to its official webpage.

She said 2019?s motto for the day is "Breaking Stereotypes, Shattering Boundaries", while the campaign also includes "promoting World Hijab Day both online and offline globally".

Khan said her motive behind the creation of the day was the hardships she faced due to her hijab when growing up in New York City.

"I was constantly bullied in middle school and high school. Discrimination took on a different height after 9/11," she said, recalling the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks in the U.S.

"Every day, I would face different challenges just walking on the street; I was chased, spat on, surrounded by goons, called a terrorist, Osama bin Laden, etc," she said, adding that it was "devastating" and she did not want anyone else to go through the same thing.

"Therefore, I thought to myself, if I could invite sisters from all faiths and backgrounds to walk in my shoes just for a day, perhaps things would change," she said, and thus, Khan came up with the idea of World Hijab Day.

She said women wearing hijab for one day in solidarity would give an idea of the things hijabi women face on a daily basis.

"Perhaps, this one-day experience will make them see the hijab in a different light," she added.

Khan said there were many milestones in the past five years and one of them was the recognition of the day by New York state in 2017.

The same year, the House of Commons of the U.K. hosted an event marking the day, where Prime Minister Theresa May also attended, she added.

In 2018, the Scottish Parliament also hosted a three-day exhibition to mark the day, and the Philippines also took steps to declare Feb. 1 as national hijab day.

"With the aforementioned recognitions by government bodies, our movement is continuously working towards reducing gender discrimination," Khan said.

On accusations of spreading an ideology of political Islam, Khan said: "There`s no politics involved in a movement which tries to bring awareness about women who are being unfairly targeted simply because they choose to wear the hijab. It`s simply awareness."

Stating that it was a nonprofit and volunteer-based organization, Khan said since the beginning of the campaign, "they have seen positive changes in many people`s lives".

"We have seen non-Muslim mothers accept their Muslim daughters by experiencing what they go through by donning the hijab for a day," she said, adding people from different walks of life stand in solidarity with their "hijabi peers" for one day.

"Stories like this go on, and it only takes one day. And this is to remind anyone that wants to change the world, that it only takes one day," Khan noted.

She said the day "serves as a reminder to be a Muslim who has responsibilities for the betterment of the society at large." (Antara/Masdar)
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