World Bulletin / News Desk
Headscarf-wearing Muslim women are making strides at the Olympic Games, a year after the Iranian women's soccer team broke down in tears at having to withdraw from a qualifying match because they wore hijabs.
Worn under a fencing mask, wrapped tightly in an elasticated bun for weightlifting or styled into a cap for shooting, the headgear is finally winning acceptance from sporting associations.
Neda Shahsavari of Iran (R) during her Women''s Single Preliminary Round match against Olufunke Oshonaike of Nigeria the London 2012 Olympic Games Table Tennis competition, London, Britain, 28 July 2012.(EPA)
This week judo sports authorities and the Saudi Olympic Committee confirmed they had reached an agreement allowing a Saudi judoka to compete with her hair covered, and last month soccer's rule makers also lifted their ban on the hijab.
The International Judo Federation had initially said Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shaherkani could not compete in a headscarf, which would have been a huge blow to aspiring Saudi sportswomen: she and runner Sarah Attar are the country's first women to compete at any Olympics.
Nur Suryani Mohamed Taibi of Malaysia competes in the womens 10 meter air rifle qualifying round during the London 2012 Olympic Games Shooting competition at the Royal Artillery Barracks, southeast of London, Britain, 28 July 2012.(EPA)
Islamic states Brunei and Qatar have also sent female athletes to the Games for the first time.
The modest forms of dress demanded by more conservative societies or chosen by more pious women have long been a brake on female participation in sport, not only for Muslims but also for women of other faiths.
"Many Muslim women both in Britain and around the world are excluded or discouraged from taking up sports owing to their desire to maintain stricter standards of modesty than sports clothes allow," said Emma Tarlo of the department of anthropology at Goldsmiths, University of London.
The Egypt women''s double sculls train during the London 2012 Olympic Games Rowing competition at the Eton Dorney rowing centre near the village of Dorney, west of London, Britain, 27 July 2012.(EPA)
"And Muslims are not alone. A number of women from Hindu, Sikh, and orthodox Jewish backgrounds as well as people with weight issues are put off swimming by the skimpiness of most existing styles of swimwear," she added.
Jimmy Carter said he still had hopes for peace between Jews and Muslims in the Middle East, but insisted that peace would not be realized until there was “justice and human rights for the Palestinians.”
NIDA's Rotterdam city council member Nourdin El Ouali said “NIDA is right now working on a proposal to accept Gaza as a sister-city of Rotterdam, like many other cities are. This would mean we commit ourselves to supporting the rebuild of Gaza for the upcoming years.”
NGOs in Nepal are said to be forcing Nepalese Muslim women into having abortions and using contraceptives.
Ugandan authorities launched on Thursday the country's first national census in 12 years.
The name has spent four years in a row at the top of the list of baby names in Oslo, but this is the first time that Mohammed tops the men's name list for Oslo.
British Muslim and Jewish leaders denounced civilian casualties on both sides of the conflict between Israel and Hamas, expressed hope for a permanent peace and condemned both anti-Semitism and Islamophobia.
With around 250 cases of systematic attacks on Muslims and Muslim places of worship since the end of the country's communist regime 25 years ago, the Mufti Ahmet Aptullov said there had been 12 attacks since 2012.
After years of fundraising, the four-year construction of the state's first mosque is now near completion.
Council President Sheikh Kiyar Mohammed Aman, for his part, said: "Though the Supreme Council is a religious institution, its development wings will work as per the rules and regulations put in place for charity organizations of the country."
Iyad Madani, head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), said "None of the [Islamic State's] acts or principles align with the tolerant teachings of Islam."
Thousands protested against a spokesperson's defense of decapitation ‘as a way of executing war criminals.’
Speaking at the World Muslim Scholars Union meeting in Turkey's Istanbul, Sabri accused Arab dictatorships and a lack of initiatives by Muslim scholars in tackling the problem of extremism for it rise.
It was not immediately clear what any motive may have been and the identities of either man are yet to be clarified.
For despite a common view that young Muslim women are forced to wear veils by men or their families, studies and interviews point to the opposite in Muslim minority countries where it is often the case that the women themselves choose to cover up.
S. Matthias Mende, a German entrepreneur who converted to Islam in 2008, created the app with the help of Shaikh Mohammed bin Majid Al Maktoum and Abdul Khaliq in the United Arab Emirates.
World famous Egyptian scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi will be among the speakers, as well as Yemeni scholar Abdulwahhab ad-Daylami and the Mufti of Chechnya Salah Mejiyev.