Sunday, 27 October 2013

"Islamic" Sex Shop raises questions on social media of Muslim territories

CAIRO: Several questions have been raised by Muslims on the launch of first ever ‘halal’ sex shop. This issue is a controversial one in Muslim territories. The Muslims believe that it is another seeds of evil being sown by the Capitalist society of the West.

Hamza Yusuf, an American Islamic scholar and co-founder of Zaytuna College in Berkeley, California, told Foreign Policy by phone “Muslim countries have all of these but they don’t advertise them.It all goes back to the monetization of religion”.

Turkey became the first country to introduce a so-called “Islamic” online sex shop to sell ‘halal’ sex products.

This is one of its kind shop to be introduced in a Muslim society which was only to spark controversy. Haluk Murat Demirel, the founder of website, who wanted to launch a website for the purpose seeking advice on sex but content available on other websites is too much explicit.

Allah is aware of needs of humans including the need to fulfil sexual pleasure and thus created a bond of love known as Nikah. The sexual desire in humans is same as need for shelter and hunger. The purpose of Islam is to satisfaction of needs of humans in a proper way in the light of its noble teachings.

The rules of Islam regarding sexual relations are only granted to the married couples. Those outside wedlock are not allowed to undergo same experience. The Quran and Hadith of Holy Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.W) also clearly states that sex within the confines of marriage is not purely for procreation, as it is in some Christian denominations.

“The maximum limit a husband is allowed to be away from his wife is four months, or six months according to the view of the Hanbali scholars. This is the maximum period a woman can endure separation from her husband,” Dr. Su`aad Salih, professor of Fiqh at Al-Azhar Univ., states in a fatwa to

“It’s not a prudish culture … but decorum is still very important,” said Yusuf.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Prime Minister of Turkey said that the name “Islamic Sex Shop must be renamed to “love shops” as Turkey won’t allow so-called “erotic shops” in its streets.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Rihanna the ‘rude girl?’ Fans angry after star’s mosque photo shoot

Al Arabiya: Dressed tip-to-toe in black with a hijab attached to a svelte jumpsuit, R&B star Rihannashocked fans on Friday after photos posted on social media networks showed her posing at Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.

Angry fans wrote comments at the photos posted to “Rude Boy” singer’s Instagram account.
“Rihanna modeling in the Sheikh Zayed mosque is just plain wrong. Who let her in?” said Instagram user BinttAlthee.
Twitter user Ahmedcarter was angered by her posing outside the mosque with shots of her lying down and wrote, “Rihanna pics at Sheikh Zayed mosque are disrespectful to the place of worship.”

Although the country’s largest mosque is a popular tourist attraction, visitors are required to respect the dress code which includes women wearing the abaya and covering their hair.
But not all her fans condemned the shoot, as many saw that her outfit fit within norms of decency. Read Full Article & Photos here

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Pilgrims inject 1bn Saudi riyals into textiles market during hajj

Saudi Gazette, Jeddah: The Chairman of the ready-made Clothes and Textiles Committee in Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) Muhammad Al-Shehri has estimated the volume of pilgrims’ spending during the current hajj season to purchase clothes and fabrics at over 1 billion Saudi riyals.

This was injected in the clothes market in Saudi Arabia, the volume of whose investments are estimated at SR10 billion.

Al-Shehri said the pilgrims will spend about SR1 billion during the Tashreeq days in Makkah, Jeddah and Madina.

He announced a drop in the percentage of counterfeit textiles and clothes that violate the specifications and standards in the Saudi market by 70 percent during the current hajj season due to the rectification campaigns that the market witnessed before the Haj period.

These campaigns are continuing till now. He said this period has helped in the exit of a big number of expatriate workers, who were promoting old clothes and those violating the standards and specifications at the lowest prices. They used to attract many customers. Continue Reading ...

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Saudi king calls for unity in the Muslim world

Al Arabiya: Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdelaziz said on Wednesday that Muslims should put their differences aside and open a dialogue between the difference sects of Islam.

“Our goals are for the interests of Muslims and because of the fear of division among Muslims. Dialogue between Islamic sects is the best way to unite and understand each other. Our differences should not affect the unity of the Islamic Ummah,” read a statement from King Abdullah, which was read out by Crown Prince Salman at the annual reception held in Mina to welcome the heads of international hajj missions.
In the statement, the Saudi king also said that Muslims must put aside all the differences and rivalries by establishing a center of dialogue between Islamic sects in the holy city of Madina, a plan which was adopted by the Conference of Islamic Solidarity in Makkah during the month of Ramadan earlier this year.
He also said in his address that the kingdom will not allow any offence or interference in its internal or foreign affairs.
“From the land of the Prophet’s message, we are telling the world that we are a nation that will never compromise its religious and moral values and we will never allow anyone to offend the sovereignty of our nation or interfere in its internal or foreign affairs,” the king’s statement read. Continue Reading ...

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Saudi barbers take a turn at pilgrims’ hair

Saudi Gazette, Mina: New barber shops have sprung up near the “Jamarat” walls in Mina, where pilgrims shave off or trim their hairs after throwing pebbles at walls symbolizing Satan.

Most barber shops are owned and run by young Saudis who have been trained in shaving.

The prices range between 30 Saudi Riyals ($8) for the complete shaving off of the hair and 15 Saudi Riyals ($4) for shortening it. The young Saudi barbers expressed happiness to be serving the pilgrims, enabling them to complete their hajj rites of which shaving is an integral part.

The barbers use sterilized razor blades and plastic towels which are used only once before they are disposed of. The pilgrims queue for the shaving operation in a highly organized style. Each shop has a number of chairs and each chair will be hosting hundreds of the pilgrims. Continue Reading ...

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Hajj from Makkah: Watch live Stream

JEDDAH: Hajj officially begins on Sunday as more than 1.3 million Muslims camp out overnight in the Mina tent city before moving to Arafat the next day.

Its an estimated that about 30 lakh people will perform hajj in this year. The overnight stay in Mina, also referred to as the day of Tarwiyah, is not compulsory to complete hajj.

For Muslims, hajj is the fifth and final pillar of Islam. It takes place in the month of Dhul Hijjah which is the 12th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. The pilgrimage journey lasts for five days.


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Monday, 14 October 2013

Turkish president Abdullah Gul in Saudi Arabia to perform hajj pilgrimage

Al Arabiya: Turkey’s Abdullah Gul has become the first president in his country to perform the hajj pilgrimage while in office, according to media reports on Monday.

Gul is among 1.5 million Muslims from all over the world who have traveled to Saudi Arabia to perform the hajj pilgrimage this year.
Hajj, which officially ends on Friday, is one of the five pillars of Islam and must be performed by every Muslim with the physical and financial means to do so, at least once in their lifetime.
The president is accompanied on his trip to Mecca this year by his wife, Hayrunnisa, who also participated in the hajj previously with the couple's son. A small delegation is also joining Gul for the trip, according to the World Bulletin news website.
“The eighth president of Turkey, the late Turgut Ozal, who died during his term in office in 1993, is the only other Turkish president to have fulfilled his hajj duty,” the website reported, noting that Ozal completed hajj while serving as prime minister. Continue Reading ...

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Walk of life: Pakistani man travels 6,387 km on foot to perform hajj

Al Arabiya - Mustapha Ajbaili: While most Muslims fly, drive or sail from across the world to perform the hajj in Makkah, a Pakistani man made the trip in a far more traditional manner; travelling on foot from Pakistan to Islam’s holiest city in Saudi Arabia.

Kharlzada Kasrat Rai, 37, began his trip from Karachi on June 7, travelling 6,387 kilometers (3,968 miles) through Iran, Iraq and Jordan on foot. (Photo courtesy: Facebook)

He arrived in Makkah on Oct. 1 to a hero’s welcome.

Kasrat Rai was received by Saudi government officials and a representative of the holy Ka’aba’s imam in addition to members of Makkah’s Pakistani community and supporters from various Muslim countries.

The two-time holder of the World Record for Peace Walks told Al Arabiya News that the aim behind his almost three-month journey was to deliver a “message of peace” to the world and to “condemn terrorism at all levels.

“I want peace in the world, equality, and a union of the Muslim Ummah like the European Union,” he said. In 2007, he walked 1,999 kilometers (1,242 miles) between Khyber and Karachi in Pakistan, a journey he completed in 85 days.

In 2009, he walked 327 kilometers (203 miles) from Lahore to Islamabad in 14 days and another 222 kilometers (138 miles) from Islamabad to the Pakistani village of Chakuthi in nine days.

In 2011, he repeated the trip between Khyber and Karachi but walked a further distance. He broke his previous record by walking 2,287 kilometers (1,421 miles) in 72 days.

Kasrat Rai told Al Arabiya News that although he faced unexpected “problems” during his latest journey to Makkah, which he described as “risky,” he still felt secure and was able to arrive in the city safe and sound. He said that the people he encountered along the way were “friendly” and gave him support., adding that in Makkah he was provided with accommodation.

Kasrat Rai explained that he was preparing to begin the journey to Mina, roughly eight kilometers (five miles) away from Makkah, as per the rituals of hajj, which officially starts on Sunday. Saudi Arabia announced that more than 1.3 million people will be performing this year’s hajj, with more than half of them coming from outside Saudi Arabia.

For Muslims, hajj is the fifth and final pillar of Islam. It takes place in the month of Dhul Hijjah which is the 12th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. The pilgrimage is obligatory for all Muslims once in their lifetime. However, it is only compulsory for those who have the physical and financial means to perform the pilgrimage.

During the religious event, those Muslims who make the journey are required to spend five days in the desert surrounding the city of Makkah in modern-day Saudi Arabia. They travel between specified points to perform rites laid down in Islam’s holy book, the Quran.

These rites commemorate the life of Prophet Ibrahim, or Abraham who built Islam’s most revered structure, the Ka’aba, with his son Ismail.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Number of pilgrims increases 75 times in 70 years

The number of foreign pilgrims has increased more than 75 times over the past 70 years, according to Abdulhamid Abal Arry, general director of King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah.

He said the number of pilgrims increased from 23,863 in 1941 to 1.8 million in 2010.

He said that 1.67 million pilgrims had arrived by air this season. Around 8.3 million pilgrims came through King Abdulaziz International Airport for Haj and Umrah in 2012 alone. 

“The number of Muslims wishing to perform Haj around the world has been on the rise since 1927. Since then, the Kingdom has witnessed huge developments,” he said.

“The government has ordered entities to conduct studies on establishing comprehensive services for pilgrims in order to accommodate the burgeoning numbers,” he added.

He said that King Abdulaziz International Airport is the main entry point for the Two Holy Mosques. “The airport, which is also the western gateway for Saudi Arabia, plays a distinctive role in serving the guests of God, with at least 60 percent of pilgrims using the terminal, making it one of the busiest in the Kingdom.”

King Abdulaziz International Airport has witnessed an increasing number of passengers since it was opened in 1982. In 2012, the airport served 27.2 million passengers compared to 7.79 million in 1983, a year after its inauguration. 

King Abdulaziz International Airport receives more than 41 percent of the total number of the Kingdom's incoming passengers.

Abal Arry added that current air traffic is double the airport's capacity and that it was no longer capable of keeping up with the continual increase. The airport hasn’t undergone radical development since vital facilities and technical systems became outdated.

The first half of this year saw an increase of 6.5 percent in the number of passengers from 2012. There were 3.9 million domestic passengers, 6.7 million passengers on international flights and 3,894,779 Umrah passengers who traveled to King Abdulaziz International Airport. Continue Reading ...

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Turkey lifts decades-old ban on head scarf

ANKARA: Turkey lifted a ban on women wearing head scarf in state institutions on Tuesday, ending a decades-old restriction as part of a package of reforms meant to bolster democracy.

The ban, whose roots date back almost 90 years to the early days of the Turkish Republic, has kept many women from joining the public work force, but secularists see its abolition as evidence of the government pushing a religious agenda.
The new rules, which will not apply to the judiciary or the military, were published in the Official Gazette and take immediate effect in the majority Muslim but constitutionally secular nation.
“A regulation that formally intervened in freedom of clothing and lifestyle – a source of inequality, discrimination and injustice among our people – has become history,” Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said on his Twitter account.

The debate around the head scarf goes to the heart of tensions between religious and secular elites, a major fault line in Turkish public life.
Critics of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan see his AK Party as seeking to erode the secular foundations of the republic founded on the ruins of an Ottoman theocracy by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in 1923.
Erdogan’s supporters, particularly in the country’s conservative Anatolian heartlands, say he is simply redressing the balance and restoring freedom of religious expression to a Muslim majority.
The lifting of the ban, based on a cabinet decree from 1925 when Ataturk introduced a series of clothing reforms meant to banish overt symbols of religious affiliation for civil servants, is part of a “democratisation package” unveiled by Erdogan last week.
The reform programme – in large part aimed at bolstering the rights of Turkey’s Kurdish community – included changes to the electoral system, the broadening of language rights and permission for villages to use their original Kurdish names.
An end to state primary school children reciting the oath of national allegiance at the start of each week, a deeply nationalistic vow, also took effect on Tuesday.

Via -

Kiswa handed over to Al-Shaibi

Sheikh Abdulrahman Al-Sudais, head of the Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques Affairs, on Sunday handed over the Kaaba kiswa (apparel) to Abdul Qader Al-Shaibi, custodian of the Kaaba's key. It will be put on the Holy Kaaba on the 9th of Dul Hijjah.

The Shaibi family has been the custodian of the Kaaba key for over 15 centuries. They are responsible for the maintenance of the Kaaba, including opening and closing its doors, cleaning, the annual draping and the reception of visitors inside the Kaaba.

The Kiswa, valued at SR20 million, is made of pure natural silk dyed in black. It is fourteen meters high. On the top third segment of the cloth lies the Kiswa belt measuring, ninety-five centimeters in width and forty-five meters in length. It consists of sixteen pieces and surrounds the Kaaba from all sides. The belt is embroidered with silver threads covered with gold.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Just Like a Prayer? Madonna reveals she is studying the Quran

Al Arabiya: Madonna revealed this week she has been studying the Holy Quran, a practice which has come alongside her efforts to build girls’ schools in Islamic countries.

“I am building schools for girls in Islamic countries and studying the Holy Quran. I think it is important to study all the holy books,” the U.S. pop icon said in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar published on Friday.

Madonna added that she agrees with what one of her friends tell her; that a good Muslim is a good Jew, a good Jew is a good Christian, and so forth.

The “Material Girl” recently got her fans talking after posting a picture on Facebook from a photo shoot in which she wore what looked like a chainmail niqab.

The picture was accompanied by the words: “The Revolution of Love is on…Inshallah [Arabic for 'God willing'].”

Speculations over the “Like a Prayer” singer’s interest in Islam have sparked in recent years after the star began dating Brahim Zaibat, a Muslim of Algerian descent.

Last year, Madonna was pictured in Turkey with Zaibat as she wore a headscarf to visit a mosque in Turkey, according to news reports.

In this week’s interview, the 55-year-old star also disclosed revelations from her younger years. She recalled being held up at gunpoint, raped and having her seedy apartment burgled three times, saying she was scared at times before she started making it as a singer and dancer.

“New York wasn’t everything I thought it would be. It did not welcome me with open arms,” she said.

“The first year, I was held up at gunpoint. Raped on the roof of a building I was dragged up to with a knife in my back, and had my apartment broken into three times. I don’t know why; I had nothing of value after they took my radio the first time.”

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

About 800,000 Muslims arrive in Saudi Arabia for hajj

Hani Sufayan, Al Arabiya: About 800,000 pilgrims had arrived in Saudi Arabia to perform the Muslim duty of hajj, Abdullah Nahhas, the general director of customs at Prince Mohamed bin Abdelaziz airport in Medina, said on Tuesday.

“Ninety percent of them arrived via the international airports of Prince Mohamed bin Abdelaziz and King Abdelaziz where the number of flights, from various destinations, reaches more than 60 flights per day,” Nahhas said, adding that the Customs Department is receiving pilgrims at more than 10 land border crossings and two naval and aerial border crossings as well.

He added that next Monday will be the last date on which the kingdom will receive pilgrims via land border crossings while next Wednesday will be the last day to receive them via aerial checkpoints.

According to Nahhas, the Customs Department had devised several plans to facilitate the entry of pilgrims into Saudi Arabia. Nahhas also noted that Prince Mohamed bin Abdelaziz Airport is using modern equipment to check bags and packages, adding that an extra transit hall has been added this year to facilitate the entry of pilgrims.

Prince Mohamed bin Abdelaziz Airport received its first batch of 220 pilgrims, who arrived from Delhi, last Thursday.

No, We do not believe Rowan Atkinson aka Mr Bean Converted to Islam

Israeli Website Claim: Rowan Atkinson Converted To Islam post has quickly become perhaps the most “popular” Israellycool post ever.

Traffic has gone through the roof. Tens of Muslims have ‘liked’ their  Facebook page.

And despite the title and content of the post – in which they clearly point out why the claim is ridiculous – thousands of Muslims around the world have shared, retweeted and linked to the post, as evidence that Rowan Atkinson has converted to Islam! (here is one example) they guess their viewers of sites will believe what they want to believe.

Meanwhile, no word from Atkinson himself because – as they already made clear – the claim is almost certainly false. The question is, why did the anti-Israel site start the rumor?

They think they missed this due to the poor auto-translation, but this next video seems to make it clearer: there seems to have be a photo of Atkinson holding his finger up, which is apparently something called the shahada finger.

It just looks to them like Atkinson telling someone off, or any number of other things.

Mr Bean embraces ISLAM

According to an anti-Israel site ‘pls48′, Islam can count among its newest converts Rowan Atkinson, aka Mr Bean.

SEE ALSO: Mr. Bean Ability

Arab and international The king of silent comedy” Mr Bean” announced his conversion to Islam News networks picked up on the social networking site, and other websites morning news announcement Global Islam comedian Rowan Atkinson’s famous “Mr Bean”.

And surprised the comedian famous “Mr Bean” middle and artistic world by announcing entry in the Islamic religion. Read Full Story here ...