Exorcisms and charlatans flourish in impoverished Gaza

March 11, 2011
gaza koran

(A man reads a Koran in Gaza, 3 Dec 2010/Suhaib Salem)

The shabby room in a one-story house in suburban Gaza was shrouded in darkness, and only the mutterings of a bearded exorcist broke the silence. A man lay stretched on a grubby mattress, writhing, as the faith healer recited Koranic verses to chase away an evil spirit. “Get out, you demon,” the exorcist, who calls himself Sheikh Ali, threatened the spirit. “Get out or I will burn you.”

Saudi clerics condemn protests as un-Islamic

March 7, 2011
saudi protest

(Supporters of Saudi Shi'ite cleric Tawfiq al-Amir hold his pictures during a demonstration following his release in Al-Ahsa March 6, 2011. Cleric Tawfiq al-Amir was arrested last week after calling for a constitutional monarchy and a fight against corruption/Stringer)

Extend Catholic-Jewish amity to Islam, Jewish official tells dialogue meeting

February 28, 2011
coexist

(An art exhibition poster reading "coexist" using the Islamic crescent, Jewish David Star and Christian cross, in Jerusalem, May 13, 2001 /Reinhard Krause)

Timeline – Ups and downs in recent Catholic-Jewish relations

By Reuters Staff
February 28, 2011

Senior officials from the Roman Catholic Church and international Jewish groups met on Monday in Paris to review relations after 40 years of sometimes difficult dialogue.

Erdogan urges Turks in Germany to integrate, not assimilate

By Reuters Staff
February 28, 2011
erdogan 1

(Confetti is released as Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan leaves the stage following a speech to some 15,000 Turks living in Germany at an arena in Duesseldorf February 27, 2011/Wolfgang Rattay )

Suleiman the Magnificent TV drama opens Turkish divide on religion

February 28, 2011
sultan 1

(Demonstrators attack billboards advertising the TV series "The Magnificent Century" in Istanbul January 9, 2011/Murad Sezer )

Tunisia needs separation of mosque and state – religaffairs min

By Reuters Staff
February 24, 2011
tunis secular

(Tunisians march against Islamists and for interfaith harmony in Tunis, February 19, 2011. The protesters' T-shirts in Arabic read: "Tunisia secular", the sign on top reads: "Tunisia for all" and the sign on bottom left in French reads: "Terrorism is not Tunisia"/Zoubeir Souissi)

Watching Bahrain, Saudi Shi’ites demand reforms

February 22, 2011
saudi shi'ite

(Shi'ite Saudi Muslim worshippers during the Ashura festival in Qatif ,December 27, 2009/Zaki Ghawas)

In free Egypt, Salafists regroup and speak out

February 21, 2011
cairo mosques

(Cairo mosques on a foggy cold day, December 11, 2010/Amr Abdallah Dalsh )

Islamists who suffered some of the toughest oppression of President Hosni Mubarak’s era are speaking out and regrouping for the first time in years, making the most of freedoms they have not enjoyed since the 1970s.  Egypt’s Salafists are resurfacing, from groups that once took up arms against Mubarak’s administration, such as the Gama’a al-Islamiya, to others only involved in peaceful preaching to advance their fundamentalist vision of Islam.

France plans nation-wide Islam and secularism debate

February 17, 2011
sarko

(President Nicolas Sarkozy at the Elysee Palace in Paris, February 16, 2011/Francois Mori)