Islamic Voice
Ramadan/Shawwal 1422
December 2001
Volume 14-12 No:180

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NEWS FROM ISLAMIC WORLD


Aga Khan Award for Nine Projects
US charts up channel to counter Al-Jazeera
Training Seminar on Minority Rights
Aid Pours for Afghan Refugees
Ramadan Feeding Programme from WAMY
Learn German or French in Azhar Varsity Schools
Study on Terrorism
85th edition of Ummah Book

Aga Khan Award for Nine Projects

Aleppo: Nine different projects and buildings have been adjudged the winners of the Aga Khan Architecture Award for the year 2001. The award carries $ 5 lakh. The buildings that were declared winners are: 1-Aït Iktel, Abadou, Morocco, improvement of living conditions for a rural community, 2-Barefoot Architects, Tilonia, India, a comprehensive development plan for the rural poor has led to a number of significant building projects realized by the “Barefoot Architects”, including teaching facilities, public spaces and accommodation for students and teachers.

3- Kahere Eila Poultry Farming School, Koliagbe, Guinea, set within the natural rural environment. 4- Nubian Museum, Aswan, Egypt all set within city of Aswan along the River Nile. 5- SOS Children’s Village, Aqaba, Jordan, conceived as a village with clusters of individual houses built with traditional materials and set within a landscaped compound with walkways. 6- Social Centre, Antalya, Turkey. 7- Bagh-e-Ferdowsi, Tehran, Iran: 30-hectare park is set in a series of steep, natural gullies leading to the higher slopes of the Alborz Mountains outside Tehran. 8- Datai Hotel, Pulau Langkawi, Malaysia: 9- Iran’s old buildings. The Chairman’s Special Award has been given to Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa whose architecture is a subtle blend of modernity and tradition.

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US charts up channel to counter Al-Jazeera

Los Angeles: The United States is planning to float a rival to Al-Jazeera TV channel of Qatar in Arabic language. It will aim at winning the hearts of the Arab youth and to counter anti-Americanism in the Arab psyche. Code named as Initiative 911, the proposal has been allocated US $ 500 million. Senator Joe Biden, the Democrat chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is the driving force behind the scheme. According to Guardian News Service, the proposal is considered a worthwhile investment “if it lessens the possibility of further attacks by starting to dry up the pool of recruits to Al-Qaeda by convincing young Muslims that the US is not anti- Islam.”

The channel will be 24 hours and will telecast programmes in 26 languages aimed at 40 Muslim countries. It may be recalled that the US has stepped up its propaganda war in the Muslim world by initially setting up “Radio Free Afghanistan” and refurbishing the Voice of America.

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Training Seminar on Minority Rights

The Neelan Tiruchelvam Training Seminar on International Minority Rights will be held in Geneva, Switzerland between May 20 to 31, 2002. Minority Rights Group International (MRG) is an international non-governmental organization (NGO) working to secure rights for ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities around the world. In 1996, MRG started to provide training to minority and indigenous representatives on international minority rights instruments and monitoring mechanisms and to facilitate the participation of these representatives in the sessions of the UN Working Group on Minorities (WGM). The five day training seminar will be organized prior to the 8th session of the WGM comprising a general introductory program on international minority rights instruments and monitoring mechanisms with special focus on the UN human rights system. Those interested in participating or nominating candidates should send their application form before December 15, 2001.

For details, contact: Lucy Mulvagh, Communications Assistant, Minority Rights Group International, 379 Brixton Road, London, SW9 7DE, United Kingdom, Tel: 44(0) 2079789498 (ext 310), fax: 44 (0) 2077386265, E Mail: lucy.mulvagh@mrgmail.org www.minorityrights.org

Note: MRG will cover the reasonable economy travel, accommodation and subsistence cost to travel and stay in Switzerland for the selected participants.

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Aid Pours for Afghan Refugees

Jeddah, IINA: Several Arab and Western countries have embarked on massive relief operations for Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran who number 3.7 million at the moment. Jordan’s King Abdullah ordered the Hashemite Charity Commission to send aid to the Afghan people. Suzzane Mubarak, wife of the Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, has decided to donate a sum of US$300,000 towards the relief efforts for the Afghan refugees. In the UAE, the wife of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nhayyan, Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, has decided to donate a sum of Dirhams 5 million to the people of Afghanistan, while the UAE Red Crescent Society is organizing a campaign for collecting donations from the people.

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Ramadan Feeding Programme from WAMY

Jeddah,IINA: The Riyadh-based World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) has launched its Ramadan Feeding Program, under which Iftar is provided to poor fasting Muslims in 44 countries, of which 22 are in Africa, and 17 in Asia, while five are in Europe.

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Learn German or French in Azhar Varsity Schools

Cairo, IINA: In an unprecedented modernization and expansion programme, the Azhar University is introducing English, French, German, or any other foreign language as a second language in 52 schools it opened in various provinces of Egypt. Those Azharian institutes that are outside Egypt, such as those in the US, Asia, or Europe, will follow the same syllabi.

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Study on Terrorism

Cairo, IINA: The Islamic Research Academy of the Azhar University here has prepared a study report on the phenomenon of terrorism, following the September 11 events at the World Trade Centre in New York, and the ensuing anti-Muslim campaign in the West, which has been going on unabated. The Academy for Islamic Research has defined terrorism in this study and also differentiated between legitimate and enjoined Jihad.

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85th edition of Ummah Book

Doha, IINA: Qatar’s Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs has published the 85th edition of the Ummah Book titled “Family Disintegration.” The book discusses the phenomenon of family disintegration, the reasons behind it, and the possible remedies.

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