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Your World This Past Week

 

Yusuf Alli – Cii News | 23 August 2013

The South African Hajj and Umrah Council (SAHUC) appointed new office bearers that will be in control for the the next two years.

Thechange came following a Annual General Meeting that took place over the week-end.

The In-coming Office Bearers and Board of SAHUC are:

President – Shaheen Ayub Essop

1st Deputy President – Ebrahim Vawda

2nd Deputy President – Mohammed Groenewald

Secretary General – Hassan Choonara

Assistant Secretary General – Moulana Abdul Fattaag Carr

Treasurer – AsifEssop

Assistant Treasurer – GoolamKolia

Board Members

Hafez Ismail Kholvadia

Sedick Steenkamp

Ebrahim Simjee

Three additional members (Chairs of the regions) will make up the balance of the Board following the regional elections.

—–

At least 36 detained protesters were killed in Egypt while attempting to escape from a prison convoy.

The men were killed while being transferred to Abu Zaabal prison near Cairo in a convoy of about 600 detainees.

The Anti-Coup Alliance said it had “obtained evidence of the assassination of at least 38 anti-coup detainees in a truck transferring them to Abu Zaabal prison”.

—–

Heavy monsoon rains triggered floods affecting more than 300 000 people across Pakistan and killed 108 others.

The rains have hit 770 villages and completely destroyedover 2 400 houses across Pakistan.

44 relief camps in flood-hit areas to accommodate affected people have been set up.

Pakistan has suffered from monsoon floods for the last three years.

In 2010, the worst floods in the country’s history killed almost 1 800 people and affected 21 million.

—–

United Nations’ chemical weapons inspectors arrived in Damascus and have been welcomed by the government.

The team is being led by Swedish arms expert Aake Sellstroem.

They would be restricted to investigating the alleged use of chemical weapons in three areas, in particular the March 19 incident in Khan al-Assal that President Bashar al-Assad blames on rebels fighting to overthrow the regime.

The attack in Khan al-Assal killed at least 26 people, including 16 Syrian soldiers.

The government and the rebels accuse each other of using chemical weapons and the regime insists that it has nothing to hide.

—–

The Review newspaper and community organisations hosted a fun filled day at the emandleni informal settlement in Benoni.

The function saw people from mackenizie park, lakefield, actonville, and bakerton join hands with residents of the informal settlemtn in commemoration of womens day.

Hundreds of kids were given toys and ladies were given a talk on what to do in rape situaitons.

It was seen as an opportunity for people across the class and racial barrier to come together.

—–

Thousands of Yemenis have taken to the streets in the capital, Sana’a, to protest against the rising number of US killer drone attacks in Yemen.

The Houthi demonstrators chanted No to US intervention during a protest yesterday.

On August 16, demonstrators in Sana’a also held a protest, censuring the government, which they say is supporting foreign agendas in Yemen while disregarding the demands of the public.

—–

The Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said he would no longer restrain his forces from confronting what he called attackers who want to destroy Egypt.

This was his first public comments since a security crackdown on anti-coup protesters that left over 2000 people dead.

He said the army and the police right now are the guardians of the will of the people with regard to choosing who their leaders will be.

Despite that comment Sisi removed the democratically elected president Mohamed Morsi on 3 July in a coupe.

—–

A speeding train has ran over a group of Hindu pilgrims at a crowded station near Dhamara, a small town in Bihar state, killing at least 35 people.

After the incident, a violent mob reportedly assaulted the train driver to death and set two trains on fire.

According to officials Many railway personnel ran away and left the station completely unmanned,.

—–

An application to force the State to fund the legal costs of miners wounded in the Marikana shootings last year waas been dismissed by the Constitutional Court.

Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng said the court has considered all arguments, and the application was been dismissed.

—–

Egyptian judiciary officials said former president Hosni Mubarak could be freed from custody this week.

They say a court ordered his release in a corruption case that alleged he and his two sons embezzled funds for presidential palaces.

Mubarak was ordered released in two other court cases against him — the killing of protesters during the 2011 uprising that toppled him and another in case, on illegal earnings.

Mubarak is on retrial for the protesters’ killing but cannot be held in custody anymore because of a two-year limit pending a final verdict.

He is also facing trial for alleged acceptance of presents from state newspapers but has already repaid their value.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to media.

—–

An Israeli official says Israel and the West must support Egypt’s army, after 24 Egyptian policemen were killed in an attack in the Sinai bordering the Jewish state.

The unnamed official’s comments in an Israeli daily came a day after a New York Times report that Israel would press Western powers to support the military in unrest-swept Egypt.

Egypt’s unrest has heightened Israeli concern, especially due to violence in the Sinai Peninsula, which borders both the annexed Palestinian territory and the Gaza Strip.

Israel and Egypt, which in 1979 became the first Arab state to sign a peace treaty with the Jewish state, coordinate closely on military activity in the Sinai.

Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, the general who orchestrated the military takeover ,is said to have cultivated close ties with Israel during his tenure as head of military intelligence in Egypt.

Reports say Sissi and his close circle, have kept in close contact with Israel even as fighting erupted on the streets of Cairo, killing 173 over a weekend and over 1000 people since Wednesday’s dismantling of two encampments of Morsi supporters in Cairo.

—–

TUESDAY

The South African Hajj and Umrah Council new president, ShaheenEssop, saids future hajj accreditation has been closed for the next few years.

The Hajj regulator currently has about 16 000 pilgrims on the system waiting to go for Hajj.

If the current Hajj quota for South Africa continues at 2500 pilgrims per year, it could take at least 6 years to work through the current backlog.

Essop said that they consulted with Ulema who say that the fardh obligation of Hajj will fall away if there is no way for people who can afford it and want to go for hajj but are prevented through such circumstances.

—–

The Muslim Brotherhood has demanded a formal investigation into the deaths of 37 men being transported in a police van.

The alliance called the deaths a “horrific crime, in addition to other crimes committed by leaders of the 3rd of July coup”.

The men were killed on Sunday while being transferred on Sunday to Abu Zaabal prison near Cairo in a convoy of about 600 detainees.

—–

Egyptian security forces arrested the Muslim Brotherhood top leader Mohamed Badie.

The 70 year old spiritual leader of the Brotherhood, was detained at a residential flat in Nasr City in northeast Cairo.

Badie and his powerful deputy Khairat el-Shater, who was in custody, would go on trial later this month for their alleged role in the killing of eight protesters.

A son of Badie was killed in Cairo during last week’s “Day of Rage” protests against the army-backed government and the crackdown on its opponents.

AmmarBadie, 38, died of a bullet wound sustained while taking part in protests in the city’s Ramses Square.

—–

Pakistan’s former military ruler, Pervez Musharraf, was charged with murder of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto

She died in a gun and bomb attack in December 2007.

Musharraf, who attended court proceedings amid high security, denied the charges and the case was adjourned until August 27.

Bringing charges against a former army chief is an unprecedented move in a country ruled for more than half of its history by the military.

—–

Gauteng tavern and shebeen owners were challenging a ban on indoor smoking, and restrictions outdoors.

The province’s liquor traders associations said the rules proposed by Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi will burden small business.

The Gauteng Liquor Forum is opposed to the plan to restrict smoking to outside areas 10m from public doorways or windows.

Motsoaledi said last week his department plans to go ahead with the new rules. But the department cautioned against jumping to conclusions.

No date has been set for the implementation of the regulations.

—–

A report said a tight economy, rising food prices and transport costs have contributed to an increase in theft by domestic workers, particularly in Joburg and Durban.

Operations director of Justicia Investigations, Alan Carey, said crimes investigated by Justicia covered a wide range, including theft of money or jewellery and staged break-ins to more sophisticated crimes such as passing on information taken from bank statements and financial documents to syndicates.

Carey put the increase in what he formally termed “domestic dishonesty” down to a combination of the pressures of a tight economy as well as old-fashioned greed.

He added that homeowners should prevent unpleasant situations by locking away valuables and not leaving money lying around.

—–

The Al imdaad foundation of South Africa made entry into the Idlib province of Syria.

The humanitarian organisation delivered much needed aid and will work towards setting up a containerized village for refugees in the country.

Syria has been destroyed by the regime of Bashar al Assad as he battles anti-government fighters trying to remove him.

At least 1,8 million people are refuges and over 100 000 people are dead in the two nad hal year uprising.

Al imdaads moulana Muhammed Saloojee reported harrowing tales of suffering and destitution currently being experienced by the people of Syria.

——

Numsa says its strike in the automotive manufacturing industry is very well supported and all factories are 100% shut down.

Workers in the industry were demanding a 14% across-the-board wage increase.

Automotive companies affected by the strike were BMW, Nissan, Mercedes, Volkswagen, General Motors, Toyota, UD Trucks, and MAN Truck and Bus.

—–

Heavy rains brought by a typhoon triggered landslides in southern China that buried homes and vehicles and killed at least 15 people,

The number of dead or missing from recent flooding in the country surged past 200.

Flooding hits China each summer, but heavy rains have brought greater than usual levels of destruction in some areas.

—–

A 19-year-old Palestinian boy was shot dead by Israeli forces at a refugee camp in the Occupied West Bank.

Eyewitnesses said the Israeli troops entered the narrow streets of the Jenin camp at dawn, apparently seeking to arrest a local resident.

Palestinian youths threw stones at the soldiers, who responded with live gunfire.

According to United Nations figures, Israeli forces have killed 11 Palestinians there this year, most of them in clashes, compared with three killed in the same period in 2012,.

—–

The Lawyer representing former president Thabo Mbeki and his former Cabinet ministers at the Seriti Commission of Inquiry, has withdrawn.

Max Boqwana asked the commission to allow him to withdraw, saying there were issues which needed to be resolved before representing Mbeki and others.

President Jacob Zuma appointed the commission in 2011 to investigate alleged corruption in the 1999 multi-billion rand arms deal.

—–

President Robert Mugabe has proposed introduction of compulsory HIV testing in the SADC region as one way of fighting the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Mugabe made the suggestion in Lilongwe, Malawi, during a meeting of Heads of State and Government on AIDS Watch Africa on the side-lines of the 33rd SADC Summit.

He said if the region was to make headway in the fight against HIV and AIDS, the matter ought to be treated in the same way other medical conditions, such as polio, are treated.

—–

The City of Joburg came under fire for a security flaw that may have compromised ratepayer information.

According to a report on My Broadband, the online services system revealed names, addresses, account numbers, PIN codes and financial details to anyone with an internet connection.

An anonymous user who discovered the flaw reported says they tried to report it to the COJ, but their call centre could not assist.

—–

A Cairo court set a September trial date for Mohamed El Baradei, the recently-resigned interim vice president for foreign affairs, on charges of “breaching national trust.”

The longtime diplomat stepped down hours after security forces brutally dispersed two protests in support of deposed President Mohamed Morsi, killing at over 1000 people.

In his resignation letter, ElBaradei lamented the violent crackdown, warning of a “state of polarisation and grave division… the social fabric is threatened as violence breeds violence.”

ElBaradei left Egypt for Vienna days after his resignation, and remains outside the country.

—–

A smash and grab suspect was left in a coma after his would-be victim drove him over, leaving the bleeding, injured man at the scene.

The incident happened on Tuesday at the intersection of Pretoria and Snake roads in Northmead, Benoni.

ER 24 spokesperson Vanessa Jackson It appeared the man had been pulled under the car.

And despite being in a coma, the man has been charged with attempted robbery and is currently under police guard at Tembisa Hospital.

—–

WEDNESDAY

The death toll from a purported chemical attack in Damscus rose to more than 570 accoriding to anti-government websites.

At around 3:30 a.m. Assad forces struck Jobar, Zamalka, ‘AinTirma, and Hazzah in the Eastern Ghootah region of Damascus whith what is thought to be chemcilcal weapons.

Over 100 children are amongst the dead

Those who tried to render aid to injured were largely unsuccessful given that the chemical weapon used, as well as the ferocity of continuing attacks with other types of weapons, including mortars, rockets and heavy artillery.

—–

Brotherhood has named Sheikh Mahmoud Ezzat as its temporary leader to replace Mohammad Badie.

Prior to his appointment, Ezzat served as the secretary general of the movement and was a member of its guidance council.

——

The Times reported that SA Police have cracked what is believed to be South Africa’s biggest child pornography ring – with links to Canada, the UK, the US, western Europe and Australasia – after the arrest of six people.

A school principal (who is also an award-winning author), two teachers, a lawyer, a dermatologist and businessmen from across the country were arrested in a multi-pronged operation coinciding with arrests overseas.

Police are investigating a further 26 people and more arrests are imminent.

——

Two Syrian pro-opposition groups claimed that government forces carried out a “poisonous gas” attack near the capital Damascus.

Local co ordinating committees said that the attack left more then 1200 people dead.

The two groups quote activists as saying that regime forces fired rockets with poisonous gas heads in the alleged attack.

The attack coincides with a visit to Damascus by a United Nations team of chemical weapons experts.

—–

According to his Legal Aid SA representative, The 14-year-old boy accused of murdering his family with an axe is fit to stand trial,.

The boy was arrested on May 24 in the Barcelona informal settlement in Etwatwa, Ekurhuleni, after he was believed to have killed his mother, five-year-old brother and three-month-old sister with an axe while they slept.

The teenager has already undergone psychiatric evaluation and is now being kept at a secret place of safety.

——

A Kenyan man living in the United States, pleaded guilty in a US court after being charged for killing his Ghanaian housemate and eating his heart and brain.

Daily Nation reportedthat Alexander Kinyua, told a court in Maryland that he killed his friend Kodie with an axe.

He said he dismembered his friends body, ate his heart, hid the head and hands in his home and placed the remaining body parts in a trash bin in a nearby church parking lot.

Judge Stephen Waldron in his ruling found the former mechanical engineering student not criminally responsible for the act due to mental illness

Kinyua was commited to a mental health facility.

—–

Pagad member Zakariyah Albertyn would find out whether he would be charged for the triple murder that took place in Athlone last week.

Pagad leader Abdus Salaam Ebrahim has already been charged with the murders and is scheduled to apply for bail in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

Pagad spokesman Cassiem Parker originally told the media that Albertyn had been arrested on Monday night at his house.

But after being briefed by police, Albertyn’s lawyer, Tashriq Ahmed, said he was being held at Bellville South police station for questioning regarding last week’s murders.

Parker has, however, consistently denied that Pagad members had anything to do with the attacks, and has criticised the media for spreading such allegations.

—–

Swedish women of various faiths posted photos on the Internet wearing hijab to express solidarity with a Muslim woman assaulted in the country for having a hijab.

The effort was part of a Hijab Outcry Campaign, initiated by Swedish women, including a number of politicians and media personalities.

The protest campaign came following a Saturday incident in a Stockholm suburb, during which an assailant attacked a pregnant Muslim woman, tearing off her hijab and striking her head against a car.

This is while eyewitnesses reported that the assailant shouted racist insults at the female victim during the attack.

The Hijab Outcry campaigners further demanded from the government in Sweden to ensure Swedish Muslim women are guaranteed the right to religious freedom.

—–

Agang SA Leader Doctor Mamphela Ramphele says if President Jacob Zuma doesn’t have anything to hide, he should disclose his finances to the public immediately.

Ramphele said there was too much corrupt activity in the country and the poor have been forgotten.

Ramphele disclosed her net worth of more than R55 million.

—–

A KwaZulu-Natal woman was arrested in Gamalakhe, Port Shepstone, for allegedly trying to hire a hitman to kill her two sons.

The woman allegedly approached a relative who had recently been released from prison to kill them, offering R25 000 for each child..

The alleged motive for the killing was that she wanted insurance money because she had insured her sons.

The relative reported the matter to the police.

A police officer posing as a hitman arrested the woman in her home, after she had gone to fetch photographs of her sons for him.

The 50-year-old mother of three would appear in the Port Shepstone Magistrate’s court on Thursday on charges of conspiracy to commit murder.

——

A criminal court in Cairo decided to release former President Hosni Mubarak pending further investigation of corruption charges against him.

The ruling didnt mean Mubarak will be immediately released, He would remain in prison for at least 48 hours pending a possible appeal by prosecutors.

The 85-year-old former president was acquitted last week on charges of embezzling money from a fund earmarked for the upkeep of presidential palaces.

He is still facing retrial in connection with charges of killing protesters during the 2011 revolution.

He was sentenced to life in prison last year, but a retrial was ordered earlier this year.

——–

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation says South Africa has never sought to export nor impose its version of national reconciliation on Egypt or any other sovereign country.

It said the South African government conveyed its readiness to share with Egypt experiences and lessons from its own political transition from apartheid rule to a genuine multi-party democratic dispensation.

Dirco was reacting to what it labelled a misrepresentation of South Africa’s foreign policy position by the interim government in Egypt.

Last week, the Egyptians said The Foreign Ministry is surprised South Africa is trying to export what it called its failed reconciliation process

It said South africa hasn’t achieved real coexistence or realised the basic needs of its people, who suffer some of highest world rates of crime, corruption, poverty, unemployment and epidemics.

—–

The African National Congress in its 2009 Manifesto promised South African that it will intensify the fight against crime and corruption and will modernise the criminal justice system and efforts. Tomorrow,

Thursday, the National Assembly will vote on the Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Bill, or the DNA bill.

The Bill enables the SAPS to keep a database of DNA profiles that will be used to identify perpetrators of crime.

—–

THURSDAY

Media organisations have obtained a letter detailing why the US will not help Syrian anti-government fighters militarily.

It states that the Obama administration is opposed to even limited U.S. military intervention in Syria because it believes rebels wouldn’t support American interests if they were to seize power right now.

The letter was written by Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to a congressman.

Dempsey said they are capable of taking out Syrian President Bashar Assad’s air force but said that plunge the United States into another war in the Arab world.

The rebel groups themselves are fractured with some working closely with the US and others opposed to the involvement of the West.

—–

The United Nations Security Council called for a prompt investigation into an alleged chemical weapons attack outside the Syrian capital, Damascus.

Opposition forces say over 1300 people including hundreds of children were massacred in a single night.

—–

Egypt’s Interim Prime Minister’s office has said former President Hosni Mubarak will be placed under house arrest, following a court ruling stating he could be released from prison pending further investigation into corruption charges against him.

Mubarak was not immediately released after the Wednesday ruling, because he can be held for up to 48 hours pending a possible appeal.

But prosecutors said later that they would not appeal, so the ruling removes the final legal barrier preventing the 85-year-old former president from leaving prison. His lawyer, Farid al-Deeb, said that he expected his client to be released as early as Thursday.

—–

The cracking of a massive international child-pornography ring, with links to South Africa, has unmasked tens of thousands of paedophiles across the world.

The discovery of millions of explicit images of children and adults, and the physical, postal and e-mail addresses from encrypted computers, is thought to have led police to an intricately linked web of sexual predators.

Raids carried out in Canada in June and July pointed a team of international investigators to South Africa and led to the arrest of six people.

They are the headmaster of a prominent private school in White River, Mpumalanga; a retired principal in Carletonville, Gauteng; a teacher in Florida, Gauteng; an IT specialist, a lawyer and a dermatologist.

Those investigating the South African link said the arrests were the result of a large-scale international investigation – dating back to 2009 – of pedophiles who operate through clandestine internet chat forums.

—–

A fire engulfed the South Fork flats in Lenasia, South of Johannesburg, in what was said to have been started by a heater that was left on all night.

There were no injuries reported as residents acted swiftly to evacuate anyone who was in danger of the flames.

ER 24 was quick to respond and assisted in ensuring the safety of the residents, however witnesses say the fire department wasn’t much help.

—–

The US Treasury placed sanctions on a madressa in northwest Pakistan, calling it a terrorist training centre.

The Treasury said the sanctions were the first to target an Islamic school.

In the report The Schools head Moulana Mohammeh Ebrahim Sais accusasions against his school are lies.

—–

Zimbabwe’s veteran leader Robert Mugabe was sworn in for a new five-year term in a massive stadium inauguration.

The event was boycotted by his election rival Morgan Tsvangirai.

Tsvangirai insisted the July 31 vote that returned the 89-year-old to power for the seventh term was rigged and shunned the swearing-in.

A constitutional court ruling confirmed Mugabe as president and declared the elections free, fair and credible, adding the results reflected the free will of the people of Zimbabwe.

——

The City of Johannesburg opened a case with police to investigate how its online billing system was apparently maliciously hacked.

The city acknowledged the problem and froze the website.

The CoJ’s Abraham Mahlangu says the e-billing system was not faulty and Hillbrow police were investigating.

Information Technology expert Gerd Naschenweng blew the whistle.

He said the breach exposed the private details of account holders to anyone with an internet connection.

—–
A 55-year-old woman was stung to death by a swarm of bees in Port Elizabeth, in the Eastern Cape

Captain Johann Rheeder said the bees attacked the woman in Charlo.

She was walking near the railway line when the incident happened.

The woman fell down and died before paramedics arrived.

—–

Syrian government forces pressed on with a military offensive in eastern Damascus, bombing rebel-held suburbs where the opposition said the regime had killed over 1000 people the day before in a chemical weapons attack.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Syrian warplanes conducted several air raids on eastern and western suburbs of Damascus, including three that took place within five minutes.

The Local Co-ordination Committees, another activist group, said President Bashar Assad’s forces were bombing eastern Ghouta from the Qasioun Mountain overlooking Damascus.

It also reported several air raids on the suburbs.

——

A school deputy principal was arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl in Knysna, in the Western Cape.

It is alleged that the victim and another learner were called to assist the suspect with the dissemination of letters to the parents during school hours .

The deputy principal allegedly molested the girl after the second pupil had left.

The principal of the school caught him red-handed

He told the mother what happened and she laid a charge of sexual assault.

—–

The Israeli army said four rockets have been fired at Israel from the southern Lebanese port of Tyre, as witnesses reported explosions near Israel’s northern border.

An Israeli army source said that one Katyousha rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome System.

No casualties or damage were immediately reported.

Witnesses reported hearing blasts near the northern coastal town of Nahariya.

Police urged residents in the region to remain close to bomb shelters.

—–

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was released from prison.

The longtime autocrat was taken from Cairo’s Tora prison by medical helicopter, following a court ruling which ordered his release.

He was initially taken to a military hospital in Maadi, a suburb in southern Cairo.

A small crowd of supporters gathered outside the prison and cheered as the helicopter took off.

The April 6 youth movement has called protests on Friday against his release.

His release was met with indifference from many Egyptians, who are more focused on the country’s recent political crisis and last week’s massacre of supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi.

—–

According to Iraqi security and hospital sources, A wave of attacks in Iraq on Thursdsay, has killed at least 26 people and injured dozens more.

The first bombing took place near the city of Ramadi in Iraq’s western Anbar province, killing at least a dozen people and injuring several more.

The bomber drove his fuel tanker packed with explosives to a military barrack and detonated it.

Later a bomber struck a wedding party for a Shia family in the northern town of Dujail, killing nine civilians and wounding 27.

And gunmen killed a local leader and two of his guards in Madain, which is about 25 kilometers southeast of Baghdad.

In the northern city of Mosul, a bomb exploded next to a police patrol, killing two police officers.

The incidents are the latest in a string of attacks across Iraq that have left more than 4,400 people dead since the beginning of 2013.

—–

FRIDAY

Israel’s air force bombed a target south of the Lebanese capital Beirut.

The Israeli military and a Palestinian group in Lebanon say it was in retaliation for an earlier volley of rockets fired across the border towards Israel.

Four rockets fired on Thursday caused damage, but no casualties in northern Israel.

A Palestinian group, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command (PFLP-GC), told Lebanon’s al-Manar television station that one of its bases south of Beirut had been targeted in the Israeli airstrike, and that there had been no casualties.

The PFLP-GC did not claim responsibility for or any connection to the earlier rocket attack.

——

The head of the Supreme Court and chairman of the Supreme Judicial Council for the Sharia Judiciary in Palestine, said that the Al-Aqsa Mosque is suffering from Jewish daily attacks.

On the 44th anniversary of the burning of Al-Aqsa mosque Sheikh Yusuf Adeis says that The Jews are desecrating Al-Aqsa through the repeated raids into its courtyards and the continued excavations under it.

He added that all indicators and data confirm that the collapse of Al-Aqsa Mosque is close.

This is confirmed by the successive collapses in Al-Aqsa mosque and its surroundings.

The latest was the collapse that took place on Wednesday night in Housh Asila, which is 20 meters away from the Selsila gate, due to the continued excavations.

Sheikh Yusuf Adeis pointed out that the occupation authorities, are trying to divide the Al-Aqsa Mosque in preparation for demolishing it and building the alleged temple on its ruins.

The chairman of the Supreme Judicial Council for the Sharia Judiciary called on the Arab and Islamic nations to shoulder their responsibilities and defend the holy city and its Islamic and Christian holy sites, especially Al-Aqsa Mosque.

—–

US and Australian agents seized 750 kilograms of cocaine from a yacht in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu..

The US Drug Enforcement Administration and Australian Federal Police have collaborated with South Pacific governments since 2010 to investigate organized crime syndicates’ use of yachts to smuggle cocaine from South America to Australia.

The drugs worth R3.3 billion were found in the engine compartment of the yacht.

No arrests have yet been made.

—–

According to a joint report published by the UN’s refugee and children’s agencies, the number of Syrian child refugees that have fled the country has now reached one million.

In their statement the UNHCR and UNICEF said that children made up half of all refugees from the Syrian conflict and that most have arrived in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.

The report’s figures show that about 740,000 Syrian child refugees are under the age of 11.

It also says more than 3,500 children in Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq have crossed Syria’s borders either alone or separated from their families.

The UNHCR and UNICEF also estimated that about 7,000 children have been killed during the conflict and more than two million children have been internally displaced within Syria.

—–

A mugger learnt this lesson the hard way when he attempted to steal a cellphone from a woman in Church Street in Pietermaritzburg on Wednesday afternoon.

The act was caught on the CCTV cameras monitored by Safe City.

They did not need to intervene much as a group of surrounding woman took justice into their own hands.

The male suspect tried to grab a woman’s cellphone, but she screamed and at least 10 women came to help her.

Instantly, community members apprehended the man and began assaulting him, one woman kicking where it supposedly hurts the most

The woman whose phone was stolen did not want to open a case and the man was later released.

In another incident, The Witness reported that robbers who targeted two women in the Pietermaritzburg CBD where caught by two body builders and were made to hand back their loot.

—–

Lebanon’s health minister says at least 27 people have been killed and over 358 wounded in twin blasts that exploded outside mosques in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli.

The blasts went off near mosques in the predominantly Sunni city on Friday, afternoon when mosques were packed.

The first bomb went off near the al-Taqwa Mosque in the city’s Abu Ali square.

Worshippers were exiting the mosque after jummah prayers as the bomb went off.

The second bomb went off outside the al-Salam mosque in the Mina area of central Tripoli, causing smoke to rise above the area.

according to a local channel, The imams of the two targeted mosques were reported to be unharmed and moved to a safe location.

Sheikh Salem al Rafei, a Sunni Imaam and outspoken critic of the regime in neighbouring Syria, was leading the prayers at al-Taqwa Mosque.

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