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HOW GLOBAL ANTI-MUSLIM BIGOTRY BECAME ACCEPTABLE
#41
TACKLING ISLAMOPHOBIA FOCAL POINT OF PM IMRAN's MAIDEN SPEECH AT OIC
https://www.dawn.com/news/1485809/tackling-islamophobia-focal-point-of-pm-imrans-maiden-speech-at-oic 

(OIC) met in Saudi Arabia early Saturday for the 14th session of the Islamic Summit, which follows two emergency Arab meetings the night before in Makkah criticising Iran’s behaviour and influence in countries like Syria, Iraq and Lebanon. The Muslim leaders discussed a breadth of critical issues, ranging from a spike in tensions in the Persian Gulf, to Palestinian statehood, the plight of Rohingya refugees and the growing threat of Islamophobia.
Prime Minister Imran Khan was among the leaders who spoke at the summit.

The premier started his maiden speech at the OIC by raising the issue of Islamophobia: "When someone from the West blasphemed our Holy Prophet (PBUH), I always felt the response from the Muslim Ummah and OIC was lacking." 

"The OIC — us heads of states — owes a responsibility to the Muslim world [...] when somebody blasphemes our Prophet (PBUH), it is a failure of the OIC that we have not been able to explain to the other countries the love and affection we feel for our Holy Prophet," said Prime Minister Imran.
"Some western countries are suffering from Islamophobia. The West should differentiate between moderate Muslim and extremist Muslim."


"The international community has to respect the feelings of more than 1 billion Muslims," he added.
"I also want to bring up the point that the Muslim world must pay more attention to science and technology," the premier urged. "We must pay more attention to quality education and universities; an area in which the Muslim world lags. I fear the Muslim world may be left behind again and this is the best forum to raise this concern in."  He also touched upon the plight of the people of Kashmir as well as Palestine, saying Pakistan supports the two-states solution and recognising East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine."The people of Kashmir must also have their right to self determination; us as a body must stand against the oppression happening with the Muslim world."  At the summit, the premier met Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The conference welcomed Pakistan's offer to host the 48th session of the Council of Foreign Ministers in Islamabad in 2021.  It commended Pakistan for its "generosity and hospitality for hosting Afghan Refugees in the past 40 years", said a statement released by the Foreign Office.

Summit reiterates support for Kashmiris' right to self determination
The statement released by the Foreign Office spokesperson, reiterated "the conference's principled support for the legitimate right to self determination of the people of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with UN resolutions".  The final communique of the conference, while referring to the UN Kashmir report of 2018, called for an "expedited establishment of a UN Commission of Inquiry to investigate the grave human rights violations" in Kashmir. It urged India to allow the Commission and other international organisations access to Indian-occupied Kashmir. According to the statement, the conference approved Yousef Aldobeay of Saudi Arabia as OIC's special envoy for Jammu and Kashmir, signifying its continued attention and focus on the Kashmir issue.

Kingdom's tensions with Iran
Saudi Arabia’s effort to bring regional leaders to Makkah reflects the Kingdom’s desire to project a unified Muslim and Arab position on Iran to further isolate it internationally and counter Tehran’s growing reach in the Middle East. The Islamic summit, however, drew political figures and heads of state from countries spanning Africa, the Middle East and Asia with widely varying policies and priorities. But for the summit’s host, Saudi Arabia, confronting Iran was at the top of the agenda. “The drone attacks on Saudi oil pumping stations carried by groups supported by Iran do not only threaten the security of the Kingdom and the Gulf but also threaten maritime safety and global oil supplies," said Saudi King Salman in his inaugural speech at the OIC summit. 

He added that the “sabotage” operations against four vessels, which included two Saudi oil tankers near the territorial waters of the United Arab Emirates, represent a dangerous threat against maritime safety, as well as regional and international security. Iran denies involvement in the attacks. Earlier today, as the summit began, King Salman said that Muslim nations will seek to confront threats and work for the future of Arab and Islamic states. "We meet in [Makkah] to work to build the future of our peoples, to achieve security and stability for our Arab and Islamic countries, and to resolutely confront the threats of aggression and subversive activities so as not to hinder us from continuing to develop our countries and develop our societies," he had said in a tweet.
 

Summit slams US embassy move to Jerusalem
OIC also slammed the US decision to transfer its embassy to Jerusalem and recognise the disputed city as Israel's capital. In his speech at the summit, King Salman declared that the Palestinian cause represents a core issue for the body and that the kingdom “refuses any measures that touch the historical and legal position of East Jerusalem”. The summit condemned the “transfer of embassies of the United States and Guatemala to Jerusalem” and urged all members to “boycott” countries that have opened diplomatic missions in the city, a statement said. 

The body also refused to accept any decision to change the legal and demographic status of Syria’s Golan Heights, especially the US decision to recognise Israeli sovereignty over the territory, the statement added.
The statement comes as US President Donald Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner prepares to roll out economic aspects of his long-awaited Middle East peace plan at a conference in Bahrain later this month.
The plan, dubbed by Trump as the “deal of the century”, has already been rejected by the Palestinians, who say Trump's policies have shown him to be blatantly biased in favour of Israel. 

Palestinians have cut off all contacts with the Trump administration after the president broke with decades of bipartisan policy to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in December 2017.
Israel insists the whole of Jerusalem is its “eternal, indivisible capital”. The Palestinians demand the city's eastern sector as the capital of their long-promised state.

Inhumane situation of Rohingya
The summit also condemned the inhumane situation of Rohingya Muslims, urging a halt to violence, the statement said.  It stressed that Myanmar’s government has the responsibility to protect its citizens.
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#42
THE RISE OF BUDDHIST ISLAMOPHOBIA IN SOUTH ASIA NEEDS SERIOUS ATTENTION .THIS ALSO HIGHLIGHTS THE GLOBAL NATURE OF CONTEMPORARY ISLAMOPHOBIA AS IT TRANSCENDS GEOGRAPHY AND IDEOLOGIES. WHILE THE CAUSES OF ISLAMOPHOBIA AND IT'S MANIFESTATIONS DIFFER IN DIFFERENT SITUATIONS IT IS IMPORTANT FOR THE GOVERNMENT, SECURITY FORCES AND MEDIA TO WORK WITH MUSLIMS TO ELIMINATE FAKE NEWS, PROPAGANDA AND PREACHERS OF HATE IF PEACE AND LAW AND ORDER IS TO PREVAIL.  WHENEVER SERIOUS OUTBREAKS OF ISLAMOPHOBIA TAKES PLACE IT IS ALSO INCUMBENT ON MUSLIM COUNTRIES TO BEAR ON THE COUNTRIES CONCERNED TO TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PREVENT FURTHER ACTS OF VIOLENCE AND CIVIL DISORDER 


FEAR IN SRI LANKA AS MONK CALLS FOR STONING OF MUSLIMS 
Top monk says Muslims should be stoned amid unsubstantiated reports of Muslim doctor sterilising Buddhist women
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/06/f...17814.html

Muslims in Sri Lanka say they fear new attacks after a top Buddhist monk called for violence against members of the religious minority, claiming a Muslim doctor had sterilised thousands of Buddhist women. Activists, politicians and members of the Muslim minority said Warakagoda Sri Gnanarathana Thero's speech last week was likely to fan communal tensions, weeks after Buddhist mobs attacked scores of Muslim homes and businesses.

The riots were an apparent response to deadly bombings on churches and hotels on Easter Sunday that killed more than 250 people and were claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL, or ISIS) group. Sri Lankan authorities blamed the attacks on two small Muslim groups. 

With the country still reeling from the bombings and subsequent riots, Gnanarathana repeated unsubstantiated accusations that a Muslim doctor in the central Kurunegala district had covertly sterilised 4,000 Buddhist women. "Some female devotees said [people like the doctor] should be stoned to death. I do not say that. But that's what should be done," he said in a speech broadcast on national television.

The monk, who heads the Asgiriya Chapter, one the largest and oldest Buddhist chapters in Sri Lanka, went on to call for a boycott of Muslim-owned restaurants, reinforcing a long-standing and unsubstantiated rumour that Muslim restaurants served their Buddhist customers food spiked with sterilisation medication. "Don't eat from those [Muslim] shops. Those who ate from these shops will not have children in future," he told worshippers at a temple in the central district of Kandy, where that same rumour had unleashed days of anti-Muslim riots last year. On Saturday, Gnanarathana defended his comments, saying: "The remarks I made are only in line with what the majority are thinking."  Buddhists make up more than 70 percent of Sri Lanka's 21 million population, while Muslims account for 10 percent.

'We are afraid'

Activists described the comments as hate speech and called on President Maithripala Sirisena to take action, while members of the Muslim community said they feared the monk's comments could lead to new violence against them. "Somebody of this calibre talking about false accusations and spitting venom like this is highly problematic because at least the younger generation of Buddhist youth is going to take this seriously ... he's inciting violence," said Shreen Abdul Saroor, a human rights activist.

"He's declaring a systematic embargo on Muslim businesses. This is a systematic way of segregating and socially ostracizing the Muslim communities," added the campaigner. In Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo, a Muslim journalist who spoke on the condition of anonymity said he was shocked by Gnanarathana's speech. "We can't even imagine what could happen to us," he said. "We're afraid the speech will lead to more attacks on Muslims and their properties."   In Kandy, a Muslim businessman said: "Our friends and families are going to work expecting something bad would happen to them."

Referring to the mob attacks in Sri Lanka's northwest in May, he added: "We witnessed how less-prominent monks led several mob attacks in recent years, the latest being last month. So we expect similar attacks could be carried out when a highly respected monk gives such a statement."  Shammas Ghouse, a 29-year-old Muslim law student, echoed the same sentiment.


"If this was coming from the monks representing Sinhala Buddhist extremist organisations like Bodu Bala Sena, we ... would've brushed it aside thinking it's a minority of Sinhalese Buddhists who subscribe to such sentiments. But this is coming from a chief prelate of a major Buddhist faction," Ghouse said. He added that the entire Muslim community was being "continuously cornered for something done by a handful of extremists". Others lambasted Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe for failing to take action.

'Deafening silence'

Farzana Haniffa, a visiting fellow at the University of Cambridge, said Gnanarathana's speech is "just one event in a series of incidents" following the April 21 Easter Sunday attacks that "speak to the normalising of hate sentiment against Muslims". "Most troubling of all is the deafening silence of our president and prime minister in the face of such statements," she added. One possible avenue for action, activists said, was the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) Act, a domestic law based on a UN treaty, which prohibits incitement to "discrimination, hostility or violence".

MA Sumanthiran, leader of the Tamil National Alliance, said the monk's speech "could be an offence to incitement to violence" and that he was "watching to see how the government and the law enforcement authorities will act". "It is unfortunate that a time like this when people are being arrested under the ICCPR Act for saying things that's that are not even one percent as hateful or harmful as this, [Gnanarathana Thero] is getting away with it because of this position he holds," Sumanthiran said, referring to the recent arrest of a Muslim woman on charges of violating the law by wearing a dress authorities said resembled sacred Buddhist symbols. The lack of action against Gnanrathana reflects "the Sinhala Buddhist hegemonic majoritarianism that prevails in the country," he added. Gnanrathana's office and a spokesman for the president declined to comment.
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