Brazil Helps Syrian Refugees Bridge Language Gap

“In just over two months I was speaking Portuguese. I don’t know how I learned it.”.. “Ratatat! Pow!” For a few years, these were the only sounds that 12-year-old Hanan Daqqah heard in Idlib, in northeastern Syria. She spent days locked up inside, unable to attend school or meet up with friends. Her childhood was passing her by. In 2015, Daqqah and her family left Jordan’s Za’atari refugee camp, where they had… Source: Brazil Helps Syrian Refugees Bridge Language Gap Read More »

Does religion restrict freedom?

The word ‘freedom’ is one of the great buzzwords of our culture. In the words of the rock band Queen, we all want to “break free”. Whether it’s Mel Gibson shouting “Freedom” as he is hung, drawn and quartered, or Martin Luther King crying “Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty we are free at last”, we all want freedom. But as Rousseau famously observed: “Man is born free but everywhere he is in chains”. What chains… Source: Does ... Read More »

Tigers seized from controversial Thai Buddhist temple

Wildlife authorities in Thailand are removing tigers from a controversial Buddhist temple after accusations of wildlife trafficking and animal abuse.. Three of the 137 tigers at the temple in Kanchanaburi province were moved on Monday. The 1,000-personnel operation will last all week. The monks, who deny all allegations, resisted at first but gave in when presented with a court order… Source: Tigers seized from controversial Thai Buddhist temple – BBC News Read More »

From Bosnia to Iraq: The Failure of Forced Coexistence

The obsession with inviolable borders often creates dangerously divided societies.. Janko Bekić The U.S.-led military interventions in Bosnia and Herzegovina, rump Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq have revealed Washington’s inclination toward forcible regime change and external democratization, but also its propensity for the maintenance of the status quo in regard to international boundaries (with Kosovo’s secession from Serbia as an obvious exception to… Source: From Bosnia to Iraq: The Failure of Forced Coexistence | The National Interest Read More »

Thousands of Muslims demand right to pray at Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia


ISTANBUL // Thousands of Muslim worshippers descended on Istanbul’s world famous Hagia Sophia museum on Saturday to demand the right to pray there. An imam led a prayer in front of the vast building that was once a Greek Orthodox basilica, then a mosque and now a museum before crowds called for it to be restored as a Muslim place of worship. “Let the chains break, open Hagia Sophia,” chanted the crowds who gathered on the plaza in front of ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia and Iran fail to reach deal on Hajj

Riyadh accuses Iranian officials of walking out of talks despite offers for “solutions” to Tehran’s demands.. Saudi Arabia and Iran have failed to reach a deal on arrangements for Iranians to attend this year’s Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca, with officials from both countries trading accusations on who was to blame for the impasse. Saudi officials accused their Iranian counterparts of walking out of talks early on… Source: Saudi Arabia and Iran fail to reach deal on Hajj – AJE News Read More »

Muslim mob in Egypt strips 70-year-old Christian woman

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Seven Christian homes ransacked and torched following rumours woman’s son had affair with Muslim… Associated Press in Cairo The Guardian A Muslim mob stripped a 70-year-old Christian woman and paraded her naked on the streets in an attack last week in which seven… According to the local Orthodox Coptic church and security officials, the assault in the Minya province village of Karama on Friday began… Muslim mob in… Read More »

Talks break down between German right-wing AfD, Muslim group

Agence France Presse BERLIN: A meeting between Germany’s right-wing populist AfD party and a Muslim organisation ended in acrimony Monday after less than an hour. A co-chair of the Alternative for Germany (AfD), Frauke Petry, said there was nothing left to talk about after the Muslim group had compared her party to the Nazis. Aiman Mazyek, the head of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany (ZMD), who initiated the meeting held in a Berlin hotel… Source: Talks break down ... Read More »

Rome’s treatment of censured Irish priests a ‘great scandal’

Catholic bishops urged to develop more just and respectful process for dealing with cases.. An Irish priest censured by the Vatican has cast doubts that his future or the futures of other clerics in his situation will improve following last week’s meeting between Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) colleagues and bishops… Source: Rome’s treatment of censured Irish priests a ‘great scandal’ Read More »

Logging to begin in last remaining European primeval forest

Warsaw: It is the last remaining relic of an ancient forest that stretched for millennia across the lowlands of Europe and Russia, a shadowy, mossy woodland where bison and lynx roam beneath towering oak trees up to 600 years old. Conservationists believe the fate of the Bialowieza Forest, which straddles Poland and Belarus, is more threatened that at any time since the communist era due to a new Polish government plan for extensive logging in parts of the forest. The plan ... Read More »

One day at Agkalia (Embrace)

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One day at Agkalia *(Embrace) we encountered group of seemingly tough young men. By Giorgos Tyrikos-Ergas * Μια μέρα στην Αγκαλιά… They set themselves apart from the other groups with the families and were just sitting around and loitering making comments about the volunteers, all kinds of insinuations about the women volunteers, and in general: they looked like trouble. When we started giving away food they did not wait in line. They cut in and grabbed it. To my request ... Read More »

Queen’s appoints 18 highly paid academics amid cutbacks

Queen’s said its appointments fit with its aim to create strong and visible academic leadership A DOZEN senior managers appointed as part of a major restructuring by Queen’s University stand to take home more money a year than the First Minister. As academics at Queen’s prepare to take part in a UK-wide strike over pay, it has emerged that the university is spending millions on new… Source: Queen’s appoints 18 highly paid academics amid cutbacks – The Irish News Read More »

Bull spearing outlawed by Spanish regional government

Decision by Castile and León authorities could end killing of bulls by horsemen at annual Toro de la Vega festival.. A regional government in Spain has outlawed the killing of bulls at town festivals in a measure that could stop the animals being speared to death at one of the country’s goriest summer events… Source: Bull spearing outlawed by Spanish regional government | World news | The Guardian Read More »

JK Rowling was right: free speech is for everyone, not just your friendsan

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We need to welcome dissent, because we grow from it. If you have to silence the other side, your own arguments can’t be very strong.. Αs the president of PEN America, I was deeply honored to have JK Rowling attend our gala to receive the PEN/Allen Foundation Award for Literary Service. Rowling gave a brief but exquisite address in which she lauded free speech in the broadest terms, saying, “The tides of populism and nationalism… Source: JK Rowling was right: ... Read More »

750-year-old skeletons will give picture of medieval Aberdeen

How an Aberdonian would have looked around 750 years ago is to be reconstructed by one of the world’s top forensic anthropologists.. Professor Sue Black, director of the Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification at Dundee University, is in talks with city chiefs on the project after a mass haul of medieval skeletons was made in the city centre earlier this year… Source: 750-year-old skeletons will give picture of medieval Aberdeen – The Scotsman Read More »

Saudi Arabia releases video on National TV teaching husbands how to beat their wives

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(AhlulBayt News Agency) – The national television of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has aired a video, in which a self-styled Islamic family doctor is seen teaching men in the country how to ‘… AWD News The national television of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has aired a… The video is believed to have been aired in the country in early February, 2016. The Kingdom’s government is said to have approved the… Saudi Arabia releases… Read More »