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February 17, 2009 | Zulfiqar Ali and Laura King
In a significant concession to Islamic militants battling the central government, Pakistani authorities Monday agreed to allow the imposition of Sharia, or Islamic law, in a onetime tourist destination just 100 miles northwest of Islamabad, the Pakistani capital. The move, the main provision of a cease-fire formally announced Monday by both sides, is likely to set off alarm bells in Washington.
November 23, 2008 | times wire reports
Malaysia's top Islamic body banned Muslims from practicing yoga, saying the Indian physical exercise contains elements of Hinduism that could corrupt Muslims. The national council that has the authority to rule on how Muslims must conduct their faith, issued a fatwa, or edict, saying that yoga involves not just exercise but also includes Hindu spiritual elements, chanting and worship. Decisions by the council in Malaysia are not legally binding on Muslims, who make up nearly two-thirds of the country's 25 million people, unless they are enshrined in national or Sharia laws.
June 20, 2008 | Kim Murphy, Times Staff Writer
It was a clear case of irreconcilable differences. The wife said there was no love left in the marriage, she wanted a divorce. The husband insisted that she had been put under the influence of a taweez, a talisman, that had erased her affections for him. He refused to divorce.
May 22, 2008 | Zulfiqar Ali and Laura King, Special to The Times
Pakistani authorities announced Wednesday that they had struck a truce with a militant faction that moved last year to impose Taliban-style rule in a once-popular tourist area. The deal between government officials and Islamic militants in the scenic Swat valley could presage broader accords with militants in the tribal areas bordering Afghanistan.
August 7, 2005 | Alissa J. Rubin and Asmaa Waguih, Special to The Times
The yellowing photo shows a woman in a knee-length, sleeveless dress. Her short hair blows in the breeze. She wears glamorous dark glasses against the summer glare. The time is the early 1960s. She could be in John F. Kennedy's America, but she's in Iraq, at a time when it was ruled by one in a string of military strongmen. Today, few Iraqi women would dare to wear such an outfit. Most cover their arms to the wrist. Only wisps of hair stray from their head scarves.
March 21, 2005 | Susan Jacoby, Susan Jacoby is the author of "Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism" (Metropolitan Books, 2004) and director of the Center for Inquiry-Metro New York.
One of the more disturbing byproducts of the U.S. involvement in Iraq is the recent outpouring of rationalization from across the American political and cultural spectrum for the incorporation of Islam into the new Iraqi constitution. There's nothing particularly surprising about such rationalizing on the right.
When the body of nurse Yvonne Gilford was found Dec. 11, fear rippled through the walled compounds where foreigners live in Saudi Arabia. The 55-year-old Australian had suffered a grisly death. She had been stabbed four times, beaten with a hammer and suffocated in her bed. In a country that by world standards is almost crime-free, some wondered if a maniac was on the loose. Or was the murder politically motivated, akin to the bombing of the U.S.
When Islamic clerics set up a village "court," Saher Banu thought she would see punishment of a man accused of raping her daughter. She was wrong. Instead of convicting the man, the 13 priests sentenced the daughter to 80 lashes with a supple bamboo cane for having unlawful sex. Hazera Begum, 20, passed out after receiving 35 blows. The trial and punishment were witnessed by about 200 people, including women and children.
February 26, 1989 | MICHAEL A. HILTZIK, Times Staff Writer
Mohammed Idem never denied that he was caught with a load of stolen auto parts in his car after his two cohorts fled on foot. But he would have liked a chance to plead that the poverty of his life with a wife, six children, his father, mother and brother had driven him to thievery. That might have mitigated his sentence. Instead, Idem had no opportunity to speak before the Islamic judge at his trial, which lasted the briefest part of an afternoon.
February 15, 1986 | CHARLES T. POWERS, Times Staff Writer
A controversy over Nigeria's apparent move to join an international Islamic organization has brought fresh reminders here of the serious religious and ethnic tensions underlying Africa's most populous country. The government of Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, in power since a coup last August, appears to be in a quandary over the issue.
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