Islamic Voice A Monthly English Magazine

August 2004 - Rajab 1425 H
Volume 17-08 No : 212
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News from Islamic World


Anti-War US Expo Draws Crowds
Jamarat Bridge Expansion Begins
Conference on Islamic Antiquities
Daawah through a Movie
Saudi Inventions on Display
Imams Face English Test
Islamic Academy in Germany
Toying with Trouble
Counting Mosques in France
More Hotels for Hajees
Memorising Quran through Net
Saudi Dates in London
Sri Lankan Students get Free Hijabs
Islam and the Japanese
Terrified Publishers Shun Book on Islam
Child Care in Islam
People

Anti-War US Expo Draws Crowds

Washington: Condemnation for George Bush’s war on Iraq is growing within the United States as an exhibition titled ‘Eyes Wide Open’ is touring cities after city. The exhibition displays 800 pairs of boots tagged with the name, state of origin, age and rank of every fallen US soldier. Alongside the boots, a 24-foot wall lists the thousands of names (so far 12,500 and odd) of Iraqi civilians, who have been killed in the US led war on their country.

The exhibition has been created by Michael Mcconnell, director of the regional office of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC).

According to the UN, by June 7, 2004, 813 US service members, 11,000 Iraqi soldiers and 10,275 Iraqi civilians had been killed.

(The exhibition can be viewed on www.afsc.org also.)

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Jamarat Bridge Expansion Begins

Makkah: (IINA): Work has been initiated on the demolition of parts of the Jamarat Bridge in Mina for the expansion and development of the area to enable pilgrims to perform the rite of stoning the devil, with ease and comfort after a series of accidents took place in here. The project aims at expanding the basin inside which, pebbles thrown by pilgrims are required to fall, as well as expanding the entrances and the exits leading to the bridge used by the pilgrims. Meanwhile, work has also commenced in another project in Mina for the construction of residential units to accommodate the pilgrims during Hajj.

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Conference on Islamic Antiquities

Istanbul: (IINA): The research centre for Islamic History, Arts and Culture of the Organization of the Islamic Conference will hold the first international conference on Islamic antiquities between 8-10 April, 2005. The centre was set up by the OIC to study the major sources and references of Islamic knowledge with regard to the history of sciences in Islam and to disseminate the results of these studies through publications and establish a reference library specialised in Islamic culture and civilization to help researchers working in these fields.

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Daawah through a Movie

Perth: The Perth-based Daawah Association opened the doors to Perth’s first Islamic cinema, hopefully ushering in both Muslims and non-Muslims to its first screening of a famous 1970s epic-The Message, which stars Anthony Quinn as a desert-dwelling Arab Produced by Moustapha Akkad, the film recalls a turbulent time in the Middle East and the birth of the Islamic faith. Separate seating arrangements were made for men and women. “The screenings, to run once a month at the Don Russell Performing Arts Centre in Thornlie, are designed to break down barriers between Muslims and non-Muslims and allay some of the fears and misconceptions that have been generated since the September 11 attacks in the US,” says Khalifa Sufyaan, president of the Association. “We are trying to let the West Australian people know more about Islam and to live in harmony. People are scared of us. They see a Muslim walking down the street and think it is Osama bin Laden or something”, he says.

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Saudi Inventions on Display

Riyadh: Two new institutions are planned to realise the full potential of gifted Saudi students. One of them will be a Maths and Science academy and the other, a feeder to develop potential candidates. Dr. Hamad Al-Baadi, secretary-general of King Abdul Aziz and his Companions Foundation for the Gifted, detailed the plans while announcing that the fourth convention of Saudi inventors will be held in Dhahran in February next year. The 26 awards, collectively worth SR2 million, will be presented to prize winning inventors. The convention will showcase the works of Saudi inventors and include lectures by eminent personalities. Dr. Al-Baadi said the foundation has identified around 100 nominees after confirming that their inventions were genuine, and they range from the fields of chemicals and electronics to agriculture and IT.

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Imams Face English Test

London: Imams and other foreign ministers of religion will have to go through an English test, under new Home Office rules. From September 2004, they will need to prove they have a “basic” grasp of spoken English before coming to the UK. In two years, the Home Office plans to raise the level of English required before entry from basic to “competent”. Muslim Council of Britain spokesman, Inayat Bunglawala said that it was important for Imams to have a knowledge of the English language. “Not just to facilitate their integration, but also to help them connect with the new generation of British-born Muslims,” he said.

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Islamic Academy in Germany

Berlin: (IINA):

The German Islamic Academy has officially been opened in Berlin to serve as a forum for studies, lectures and meetings for the Muslim population in Germany who are estimated to number around 3.5 million. The academy chairman, Abdul Hadi Hoffman, said the academy would be an independent and transparent body, active in holding studies, lessons and lectures that tackle the daily and basic concerns of the Muslim population in the country. Among the issues to be discussed in these gatherings are women in Islam, inter-faith dialogue and political Islam.

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Toying with Trouble

Dubai: Dubai Municipality has fined a local company, which imorted a particular brand of toys ridiculing the Arabs, and asked it to withdraw this product from the local market. The toy comes in chocolate-coated coloured eggs and is a caricature figure clad in the traditional Arab attire seated on an oil barrel holding petrol-station hose with its gun pointed to his head. Hamdan Khalifa Al Shaer, Director of Environment Department at Dubai Municipality, said the civic body would deal harshly with such mean efforts aimed at degrading Arabs or, for that matter, any people. “We have imposed a fine on them and asked them to withdraw the toy from the market. The company has been warned that in case of a repetition of this offence, harsher penalties will be imposed on it,” Al Shaer said.

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Counting Mosques in France

Paris: The number of mosques in France has increased to at least 1554 by the end of 2003, moving from rented underground rooms to owned places of worship in public places, according to a field study by a French Muslim group. Citing the study findings in the new edition of his book on mosques in France, French journalist, Xavier Ternisien said the Paris northern suburb of Saint Denis alone hosts 97 mosques, while there are 73 others in north France. Mosques are now being built on properties of muslims and not leased spaces as in the past, he noted.

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More Hotels for Hajees

Makkah: A total of 54 hotels in addition to 41 high-rise buildings will be built in the area of Jabal Omar close to the Grand Mosque in the holy city of Makkah to accommodate pilgrims and Umrah visitors under a project to develop the areas around the holy Haram. The project, said Sheikh Abdul Rahman Faqeeh, chairman of the constituent committee for Jabal Omar Development Company, will also include the construction of 27 residential units for permanent accommodation, bus station to serve the pilgrims and visitors, car parks accommodating 12,000 vehicles in addition to commercial centers and shops.

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Memorising Quran through Net

Jeddah: (IINA): An agreement was recently signed between the Holy Quran Memorisation International Organisation and Harf Company for information technology for the establishment of a website to assist in the memorisation of the holy Quran through the Internet. The objective of the organisation is to encourage people to memorise and understand the Quran and to spread its teaching among Muslims all over the world. The cost of the project which is expected to be high would be met through floating shares at the value of SR100 each.

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Saudi Dates in London

Riyadh: Saudi Arabia has acquired the major share of export deals for Dates with the United Kingdom. The transactions were finalised at the Royal Agricultural Show held in Warwickshire recently, Europe’s premier agricultural event. “Many Saudi companies that took part in the show were successful, winning contracts to export dates to Britain,” said Dr. Fahd Al-Sultan, secretary-general of the Saudi Council of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI). The four-day show, attracted 161,410 visitors. He said 14 Saudi companies that exhibited their products were also able to promote a wide range of products using the United Kingdom as a gateway to Europe. The show is organised annually by the Royal Agricultural Society of England. It provides a showcase for quality products in sectors of agriculture, including the latest research and developments in science, post-harvest technology, livestock genetics, animal health, crop diversification and quality and agricultural machinery. Saudi Arabia produces 8,30,000 tons of dates annually from the 32 million date palms in the Kingdom and production is likely to increase to one million tons by the end of 2010.

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Sri Lankan Students get Free Hijabs

Colombo: (IINA): The Sri Lankan government has agreed to distribute hijabs free of cost to the Muslim girl students at the country’s schools according to a decision taken by the council of ministers which is mainly made up of Buddhists (75 per cent). Although the Muslim minority in the country represents 7 per cent or 20 million of the country’s population, it enjoys growing political influence and continues to attract the interest of the two main political parties in the country. The distribution of the free hijab is an offshoot of the government’s policy of subsidising school uniforms that has been in force for years now.

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Islam and the Japanese

Tokyo: (IINA): A symposium on dialogue between the Middle East and Islam was recently held in Japan to enable the Japanese have a better understanding of the region and Islam. Organised by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the symposium was attended by Arab and Japanese experts and researchers on Arabic and Islamic studies drawn from both the academic and diplomatic quarters. The Japanese ministry said the people of Japan started showing increasing interest in Islamic and Middle Eastern countries following the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States and the war against Iraq.

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Terrified Publishers Shun Book on Islam

London: David Selbourne, who has written more than a dozen books, and his literary agent suspect that publishers are shunning to publish his book- The Losing Battle With Islam, because it could provoke anger from the Muslim world. Among the subjects covered in the book is the “negative impact” of actions by Muslims in recent decades. It suggests that Islam is not a religion of peace, balance and compassion, as many of its adherents claim. Six publishers, including Penguin, HarperCollins and Heinemann, have turned down the book in the past five months. Selbourne, who is British, but lives in Italy, said that he believed that the reason for the repeated rejection was clear. “It is controversial because it is a record written without fear or favour - of what has actually happened during the Islamic revival,” he says. His new book looks at the development of Islam from 1947 to the present day, concentrating on the period from 1990.

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Child Care in Islam

Cairo: (IINA): The International Center for Population Studies and Research of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif and the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) is jointly organising a meeting for experts on child upbringing in Islam. Al-Azhar University Rector, Dr. Ahmad Al-Tayeb said the Center is keen on addressing the issues relating to children and finding suitable solutions within the teachings of Islam. The Director of the Center, Dr. Jamal Abu Alsurour, said the meeting will spread over three sessions that will address a number of issues dealing with children rights in Islam, integrated child care and the physical and mental upbringing of the child.

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People

Honoured:Former World Heavyweight champion, Mohammad Ali was presented the Award for Lifetime Achievement by Arab-American Institute Foundation in Washington. Institute president, James Zogby lauded Ali’s role in opposing war in Iraq and recalled his imprisonment for two years during the Vietnam war. Award for professional excellence was also presented to MPI Media Group, a media distribution company founded by Walid and Malik Ali.

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News Community Roundup Editorial Readers Comments Men, Missions and Machines What's New Trends Insights Community Initiative Issues
Children's Corner Quran Speaks to You Hadith Religion Question Hour : Dr. Zakir Naik Our Dialogue Back to The Past Quran and Science Women in Islam Living Islam Just for the Young Reflections Journey to Islam Sould Talk Matrimonial Jobs Archives Feedback Subscription Links Calendar Contact Us


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