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Resources updated between Monday, October 28, 2019 and Sunday, November 03, 2019

November 1, 2019

Indonesian mounted police (File photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

An Indonesian man who worked for a clerical organization that advises a local government on Islamic law has been caned in public for adultery, an official said.

Mukhlis bin Muhammad, 46, a member of the Aceh Ulema Council (MPU), was caned 28 times on Thursday in a public park by a religious officer, the official said.

The woman he had the sexual relationship with was flogged, also in public, receiving 23 lashes.

The punishments took place in ultra-conservative Aceh, the sole province in Indonesia - the world's largest Muslim-majority nation - that applies sharia law. It was granted autonomy in 2001.

Public floggings and canings - which many Acehnese support - have become common there since they were introduced in 2005, and are administered for a range of offences also including theft and gambling. The province outlawed homosexuality in 2014.

MPU advised the Aceh government in drafting its current version of sharia. Muhammad's role in the organization was not disclosed.

Husaini Wahab, a senior official in Aceh Besar district, said canings were meant to serve as a reminder to locals to adhere to the Islamic criminal code.

"It doesn't matter whether he is an ulema, an imam, or an ordinary citizen, the government does not discriminate," he said, adding that Muhammad could no longer belong to the MPU.

Rights groups have called for public floggings and canings to be discontinued.

Papang Hidayat, a researcher with Amnesty International, said they violated human rights. "Showing consensual affection should not be criminalized," he said.

Indonesia is home to a number of religious and ethnic minorities and has been seen as an example of how democracy and Islam can co-exist. But rising conservatism has in recent years spurred religious intolerance there.

Two Indonesians caned for adultery Document

A social media post from a member of NYU Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter who wrote, “May Allah not help them and burn them in the hell fire... Let the Jews burn silently.” (ISGAP)

Pro-Palestinian college group is 'main driver of Jew-hatred on campus,' study suggests Article

October 31, 2019

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft (File photo)

"Israel and the United States are heading a diplomatic effort to increase oversight of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) when its mandate to service Palestinian refugees is renewed in December, according to Israel's Mission to the UN.

The renewal, which occurs every three years, is typically a fairly standard procedure for the 71-year old agency, but the process is expected to receive special attention this year in light of the UN's ongoing investigation into ethical misconduct among UNRWA senior staff.

Israel and the US have been highly critical of UNRWA, which otherwise enjoys broad international support as an organization that provides humanitarian assistance to the Palestinians. The US, which under the Obama administration had been UNRWA's largest donor, cut off all financial assistance to the organization last year.
...
It's presumed that UNRWA's mandate will be renewed. Israel and the US are therefore working to ensure that the UN puts a number of oversight measures in place when it extends the mandate..."

ISRAEL, U.S. TO PUSH FOR UNRWA OVERSIGHT WHEN MANDATE IS RENEWED Article

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (File photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

U.S. rebukes Germany for refusal to say Iran's threat to destroy Israel is antisemitic Article

October 30, 2019

Knife used in attempted terror attack in Hebron, October 30 2019. (photo credit: POLICE SPOKESPERSON UNIT)

Female Palestinian terrorist attempts stabbing attack at Cave of Patriarchs, Hebron Document

October 29, 2019

Burkina Faso military forces responding to terrorist incident (File photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Sixteen killed in Burkina Faso in suspected jihadist attack Document

Hezbollah terrorists marching (File photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

Gunfire was heard as a group of men attacked protesters with knives at Beirut's Martyrs' Square soon after youth in black shirts destroyed tents and scared off protesters without any interference by security forces, according to Lebanese broadcaster MTV. The group of youth, who are widely being identified as members of the Hezbollah terrorist group and the pro-Hezbollah Amal Party, requested that everyone leave the square.

Similar attackers were reported in other areas of Beirut and anti-riot police and the Lebanese Army were deployed to downtown Beirut. Amal and Hezbollah members threw stones at the army and protesters, according to Al-Hadath.

Members of Amal are preparing to head to Elia Square in Sidon in southern Lebanon, according to MTV.

According to Al-Hadath, members of Hezbollah and Amal have been tearing down tents in the Martyrs' Square.

The youth seem to have orders to break tents and scare protesters without being exposed, according to an MTV correspondent. They are attacking protesters with sticks.

"Security forces remain calm and unbothered as a group of men wearing black shirts attack protesters with sticks in Martyrs' Square," said an MTV correspondent.

Protesters are flowing to the Ring Bridge after clashes between protesters and Lebanese people against the protests broke out there earlier.

Amal and Hezbollah supporters are roaming downtown Beirut on motorcycles to confront demonstrations.

"We tell the prime minister of Lebanon and the minister of interior and minister of defense that what is happening in Beirut today is flawed and it is your responsibility," said former member of parliament Fares Souaid, according to MTV. "I warn of the situation in Beirut because if it continues it will take another turn."

"Here is the official sponsor of the government, using the means it excels at including intimidation and bullying in the face of the finest uprising in Lebanon in its history, but the will of the Lebanese people will remain the strongest," said president of the Kataeb party Samy Gemayel.

Earlier, Reuters reported that supporters of the Lebanese Shi'ite groups Hezbollah and Amal fought with protesters at a roadblock on a main road in Beirut on Tuesday, pulling down their tents and leading police to step in, Reuters witnesses said.

The men were chanting in support of Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, the head of the Shi'ite Amal Movement.

The incident started when the men pushed their way into the protest camp set up by demonstrators on the Ring Bridge in central Beirut, trying to make them open the road.

Recent days have seen increased violence among the protests as supporters of the Hezbollah terrorist group and the pro-Hezbollah Amal party clash with anti-government protesters.

On Monday, unidentified gunmen opened fire at a protesters' tent on a highway in the western Bekaa Valley, according to the Lebanese National News Agency. The bullets hit a water tank that provides the town with water, causing panic. The shooters fled from the scene in a black car to an unknown location.

The Lebanese Army refused to intervene when clashes broke out on the Ring Bridge in Beirut on Tuesday. Civilians attempting to cross the road blocked by anti-government protesters began attacking the protesters, according to Lebanese broadcaster MTV.

Reports by Al-Arabiya stated that the attackers were supporters of Hezbollah and Amal.

The civilians opposed to the closure of the Ring highway assaulted a news correspondent and cameraman working for MTV and violently attacked and beat protesters.The Lebanese Army remained at a distance from the brawls and security forces were sparse in the area. Eventually they advanced a little and set up a human barrier to prevent clashes.

An MTV correspondent called the incident "shameful" as security forces didn't intervene at a time when "elderly people and women are being beaten."

Demonstrators called on the Interior Minister Raya Hassan to send security reinforcements to the Ring Bridge.

SHOOTING, STABBING REPORTED AS HEZBOLLAH SUPPORTERS SCARE OFF PROTESTERS Document

A knife used in an attempted Palestinian stabbing attack (File photo)

Palestinian Stabbing Attack Foiled in Jerusalem Document

October 28, 2019

Hong Kong protests (File photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Hong Kong weekend ends again with protest violence, tear gas Document

Burundi military forces (File photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Four Burundian journalists charged with undermining state security Document

The United Nations Human Rights Council (File photo)

U.N. hypocrisy on human rights continues Article