Bangladesh blogger becomes second to be murdered in a month

 

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According to The Guardian, Washiqur Rahman’s murder is latest attack on progressive activists following similar killing of American atheist blogger in February.

A blogger known for his atheist views has been stabbed to death in Bangladesh, in the latest of a series of attacks on independent writers in the developing south Asian nation.

Washiqur Rahman, 27, died of serious injuries inflicted in the assault on Monday morning in Dhaka, the capital.

Police have arrested two men for the murder, which comes just weeks after an American atheist blogger was killed in Dhaka, in a crime that triggered international outrage.

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AAI Welcomes First Affiliate Group in Iraq

Atheist Alliance IraqOn April 1, AAI's newest affiliate group, the Atheist Alliance in Iraq, was accepted as AAI's 48th affiliate group, and the first in the state of Iraq.

Organized byAmmar Adnan on Facebook, the group already has over 300 members since being constituted only a month earlier.

Ammar Adnan says that religious strife in Iraq is constant, with Sunnis and Shi'a holding strong sectarian views and more often than not considering the other side as 'infidels'.  Being an atheist is even tougher: Although places like Baghdad are relatively secular and people in general are more tolerant of different faith views, the smaller towns and rural provinces are rife with sectarianism and tribal intolerance.  But Ammar sees Iraq, after more than two decades of economic sanctions and war, as reaching a new stage where the ideals of freedom of conscience and secularism have their best chance of taking root in a long time.

The Atheist Alliance of Iraq is a group to give voice to those ideals, and to provide a way for similarly-minded Iraqis to find and support each other.

Russia looks to lift first barrier to Islamic finance and Sharia laws as crisis grows

22 Reuters, Russian lawmakers have introduced to parliament a draft bill to support Islamic finance, aiming to attract capital inflows at a time when an economic slowdown is intensifying and Western sanctions show no sign of being lifted.

The draft law, sent to parliament's lower house, the State Duma, this week, proposes allowing banks to engage in trade activities, a concept central to many of the structures used in sharia-compliant financial products.

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Turkey's atheists soldier on in the face of death threats and legal problems

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According to DW, Turkey is officially a secular state, but 99 percent of the population is Muslim. Now the country's small atheist community is voicing alarm about what it says are increasing levels of intolerance and ignorance towards it, fueled by the country’s pro-Islamist government. Last year atheists launched their own society – now they are facing growing threats and legal problems reports Dorian Jones.

For watch the video please check DW 

Lieberman is ‘Jewish ISIS’ says Israeli Politician After Beheading Comments

avigdor-lieberman According to Newsweek, an Israeli politician and academic have called for an investigation to be launched into the comments of Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman after he called for the “beheading” of Arab-Israelis who were not loyal to the state of Israel.
 
Arab-Israeli politician Ahmad Tibi, leader of the Arab Movement for Change (Ta’al) party, said that Lieberman is the “Jewish Islamic State” after the country’s top diplomat issued his inflammatory remarks at an election rally in the western city of Herzliya on Sunday.
 
In a speech to Arab students at Jenin University in the West Bank city of the same name, Tibi said that the united Arab Joint List (a coalition of Arab-Israeli parties) would “remove racists’ and fascists’ heads only through democratic means - bringing as many [Knesset] seats as possible and active participation in the election. The stronger we are, the weaker Jewish IS will be.”

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Death Sentence Upheld In 'Blasphemy' Killing Of Pakistan Governor

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According to Radio Free Europe, a Pakistani court has upheld the death sentence for the killer of a politician who sought blasphemy law reform, but dropped a terrorism conviction, making it unlikely he will be executed soon.

The Islamabad High Court dismissed an appeal against the death sentence by Mumtaz Qadri, a former bodyguard who fatally shot Punjab governor Salman Taseer in Islamabad in January 2011.

Qadri admitted shooting Taseer, saying he objected to the politician's calls to reform Pakistan's strict blasphemy laws, which can carry the death penalty.

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Turkey blocks website of its first atheist association

It took less than a year for a Turkish court to block the website of the country’s first official atheism association.

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According to News.AZ, the Atheism Association, the first of its kind in any Muslim-majority country, was officially founded in Istanbul’s Asian-side neighborhood of Kadıköy in April 2014, Hurriyet Daily reports. However, the Gölbaşı 2nd Civil Court of Peace in Ankara has finally moved to block the association’s website, according to the group’s statement on March 3, 2015.

As of March 4, Turkish internet users could not access www.ateizmdernegi.org without using tools to bypass blockings, such as a VPN.

The court ruling cites Article 216 of the Turkish Penal Law, which forbids “provoking the people for hate and enmity or degrading them.”

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Americans Turning Away From Organized Religion in Record Numbers

What's the future of religious institutions in the U.S.? Answer: None.

By Lynn Stuart Parramore / AlterNet

 atheist 2According to AlterNet, with fire-breathing religion figuring anew in global conflicts, and political discussions at home often dominated by the nuttery of the Christian right, you might get the sense that somebody’s god is ready to mug you around every street corner. But if you’re the type who doesn’t like to hang your hat on organized religion, here’s a bit of good news: in America, your numbers are growing.

There are more religiously unaffiliated people in the U.S. today than ever before. Starting in the 1980s, a variety of polls using different methodologies have come to the same conclusion: people who do not identify with religious labels are on the rise, perhaps even doubling in that time frame.  

Some call them “nones”: agnostics, atheists, deists, secular humanists, general humanists, and people who just don’t care to identify with any religious group. It’s not exactly correct to call them nonbelievers, because some still have faith and spirituality in some sense or another. A 2012 Pew study noted that 30 percent of these people believe in "God or universal spirit" and around 20 percent even pray every day. But according to the latest research, Americans checking the “none of the above” box will make up an increasingly important force in the country. Other groups, like born-again evangelicals, have grown more percentage-wise, but the nones have them beat in absolute numbers.

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