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Canadians call on government to bring in more Syrian refugees

Canadian mayors, provincial premiers and federal opposition parties, as well as numerous faith groups and even a retired military general have all jumped head-first into the refugee crisis, with many calling for Canada to increase the numbers it takes in of people displaced by Syria’s four-and-a-half-year-old war

Deutsche Welle

Cultural treasures are also victims of war

The “Islamic State” militant group recently smashed several art pieces at the Palmyra UNESCO World Heritage site, in the Syrian city of that name. Even more brutally, they beheaded 82-year-old Khaled Al-Assad, one of Syria’s most respected archaeologists, who had been the keeper of Palmyra for more than 50 years. In Yemen, the damage to three out of …

Cesar Chelala

Religion and the senses: Western ‘illuminations’ and IS tactics

I was watching a televised discussion the other day about displaying movies and conducting plays in mosques, in a room extension adjacent to the mosque that is, and the subsequent conflagration that followed between the two clerical discussants. The objective behind this suggestion, typically enough, was modernising and moderating the khitaab al-dini (religious discourse or …

Daily News Egypt

The industrialisation of reconciliation: Iran, Saudi Arabia and IS

I came across a curious news item the other day on Reuters about an industrial development project in Saudi Arabia, and it rang a few bells. The plan is to build a “new industrial city in the south of the al-Ahsa district in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province”, a project helmed by the state-owned oil company …

Daily News Egypt