Muslim center dispute sparks New York rallies — article link, video, photo gallery

August 23, 2010

mosque rally 1 (Photo: Muslim center supporter at a New York rally, August 22, 2010/Jessica Rinaldi)

VIDEO: Roundup of Ramadan starting in Turkey, Asia, Afghanistan

August 13, 2010

Below is a Reuters video roundup of the start of Ramadan in Turkey, Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Afghanistan:

Pakistanis start Ramadan fasting month amid flood misery

August 13, 2010

pakistan flood 1 (Photo: Evacuees from a flooded village dodge an army truck carrying relief supplies in Pakistan’s Punjab province on August 11, 2010/Adrees Latif)

They’ve been left homeless and hungry by the worst flooding in decades, but for many Pakistanis, their suffering is no reason to ignore Ramadan, the Muslim fasting month that began in their country on Thursday.

Mecca Mean Time? World’s biggest clock ticks in Islam’s holiest city

August 12, 2010

clock saudi 1

A giant clock on a skyscraper in Islam’s holiest city Mecca began ticking on Wednesday at the start of the fasting month of Ramadan, amid hopes by Saudi Arabia that it will become the Muslim world’s official timekeeper.

Hardline Islam steps out of the shadows in Algeria

August 12, 2010

algeria salafi (Photo: Books by ultra-conservative Salafis are increasingly available in Algeria, 2 August 2010/Louafi Larbi)

In a bookshop in an eastern suburb of the Algerian capital, visitors can stroll in off the street and pick up titles such as “Our fight against the West,” and “Jihad according to Salafist principles.”

Stock markets in Muslim countries usually rally during Ramadan-study

August 9, 2010

datesRamadan, the holiest month of the Islamic calendar marked with fasting and prayer, is also an uplifting time for stock markets in predominantly Muslim countries, according to a study by the University of New Hampshire.

Planned New York Islamic center near Sept. 11 site wins approval

August 3, 2010

A New York city agency denied “landmark” status for an old building near the site of the Sept. 11 attacks, clearing the way for the building to be torn down to make room for a Muslim cultural center which has spurred heated debate.

Sonorous black Saudi cleric rescinds objection to fatwa against singing

July 29, 2010

saudi singerAn imam whose voice helped him become the first black Saudi to lead prayers at Mecca’s Grand Mosque said he was wrong to speak against a fatwa prohibiting singing, in the latest spat between reformist and conservative clerics in the kingdom.

Saudis say Muslim women exempted from wearing face veils in France

July 27, 2010

saudi niqabTwo Saudi clerics have declared Muslim women are exempt from wearing full veils in France, which is planning to ban them, but added they should avoid visiting it as tourists.

The perils of eating fire in Saudi Arabia when religious police disapprove

July 21, 2010

fire eaterSaudi artist Maher al-Luqman is always nervous when he goes on stage to eat glass and fire or to walk on nails, for fear the country’s religious police will disrupt his show.