From Al Bebeeceera:
By Alastair Leithead
Afghan mosques have ‘not normally’ been the scenes of violence
Two people have been killed and at least 10 injured in Afghanistan after gunmen opened fire in a mosque during prayers in a province bordering Kabul.
In a separate incident, also near the capital, a mullah was shot dead.
The mosque shooting took place in Wardak province which borders Kabul. A police chief said around 10 gunmen entered the building in Abad district.
They opened fire, killing two people and injuring others including a boy. Police are trying to find a motive.
But it does not appear to be any kind of tribal or local dispute, and the Taleban are suspected to be responsible.
In neighbouring Logar province on Tuesday night the Afghan interior ministry said a mullah on his way home from prayers was abducted and then shot a number of times.
He died of his injuries.
* Isn’t a mullah a shiite sort of thing?
Attacks on religious figures, especially against those perceived to be pro-government, have increased over the past year.
But they are still unusual.
They are also a reminder that the insurgency is not just limited to bombings and fighting in the south and east of the country.
Assassinations and tactics designed to intimidate local people are being used across Afghanistan and are getting increasingly close to the capital.
* Hmm, why would that be? Isn’t Islam a ‘Religion of Peace?’
* A familiar trend emerges in the “peaceful and tolerant” Maldives.
More than 50 people have been arrested after hundreds of soldiers besieged a makeshift mosque on one of the small islands that make up the Maldives, it emerged yesterday.
Security forces stormed the Dhar-ul-Khair mosque on Himandhoo island, after a policeman had been captured by “70 masked men” carrying swords and iron rods. In the ensuing battle one soldier suffered head injuries and a policeman lost his hand.
The showdown comes just a week after tourists, including a British couple, were caught in a bomb blast on the capital island Male. Himandhoo is one of the 1,190 islands that make up the tourist paradise of the Maldives and lies 50 miles from Male.
Government officials say that they have become increasingly aware that a section of Himandhoo’s population, which numbers just 600, were becoming increasingly radicalised.
“Although the Maldives has practised a peaceful and tolerant Islam we knew of increasing extremism [in Himandhoo] because local resorts were no longer sending tourists there,” said Mohammed Shareef, a spokesman for the government.
There have been reports that groups of Maldivians had travelled to Pakistan where they had fallen under the spell of radical preachers. However, Mr Shareef said he saw no “foreign hand at work”.
We are not sure of these things yet. The device in Male was an amateur one. We think it is more local,” he said.
The islands are home to 330,000 Sunni Muslims who practise a liberal form of the religion, and authorities said the bomb attack was the first such incident.
Western officials told the Guardian that there were “credible reports of a mosque militia” working in the Maldives.
Political opponents say that President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, who has been in power for three decades, has turned a blind eye to the increasing extremism in the Maldives. He has also been criticised for jailing opponents.
Hassan Saeed, the former attorney general who quit his post after he says his warnings about Islamic radicalism were ignored, said: “Although we have a history of moderation the population is not immune from events in Middle East and Iraq.”
By Ajay Makan
In the Islamic state founded by Hamas in Gaza, a huge brawl erupted at a mosque when Hamas tried to substitute one of their own preachers for the usual hate-spewer:
And in other mosque madness, Indian soldiers stormed a mosque to kill two Islamic terrorists in Kashmir: Police: 2 Islamic rebels killed in mosque siege in Indian Kashmir.Â