Category Archives: Muslim community

MISSISSAUGA: Pakistani woman takes federal government to court over nikab ban

Ex-immigration minister Jason Kenney ‘dictated’ niqab ban at citizenship ceremony, court told

A ban on veils while taking the citizenship oath was driven by Kenney’s own ideology, say lawyers for Zunera Ishaq, who is challenging the policy in court.

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The federal government introduced a new policy to ban new citizens from wearing face-covering veil during the oath taking at citizenship ceremonies like this one in Toronto.

By:  Immigration reporter, Published on Fri Oct 17 2014

A Mississauga woman has taken the federal government to court over a policy that forbids wearing the face-covering veil while taking the oath of citizenship, arguing the ban breaches her Charter rights and fails to accommodate her religious beliefs and dress code.

Banning the niqab from citizenship ceremonies is the result of former immigration minister Jason Kenney imposing his own ideology of “Canadian values” on the process, Zunera Ishaq’s lawyer, Naseem Mithoowani, told federal court Justice Keith Boswell at a hearing in Toronto on Thursday.

“The true motivation of the policy is to compel Muslim women to abandon, albeit briefly, their religious adherence,” Mithoowani said.

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It’s the first such challenge against the niqab ban at citizenship ceremonies; if successful, it could strike down the policy. Continue reading

CALGARY: Homicide victim identified as store owner Maqsood Ahmed

Update: Calgary homicide victim identified as store owner Maqsood Ahmed

Victim stabbed while carrying bag of money, not far from police headquarters

BY , CALGARY SUN

FIRST POSTED: | UPDATED: 

Homicide detectives are investigating the stabbing death of a store owner near police headquarters in northeast Calgary Wednesday night.

About 9:45 p.m., emergency crews were called to the 4700 block of Westwinds Dr. N.E. for a report of an assault with a weapon.

The man, whom friends have identified as Maqsood Ahmed, owner of the Calgary Produce Market, was walking with another person when the attack happened, said Det. David Fakas with Calgary police.

Ahmed was carrying a bag of money, though the reason was not immediately known and would be part of the police investigation, said Fakas.

“The older man was stabbed,” Fakas said, adding the victim was taken to hospital in life-threatening condition.

“He was talking and breathing at the scene … once he got to the hospital he succumbed to his injuries.”

RELATED: Ahmed a ‘hard’working, dedicated’ businessman, say friends

Two unknown male suspects fled in a dark vehicle, said Fakas.

It’s believed they may have taken the weapon with them as investigators were not able to locate it at the scene.

“Homicide (unit) is activated and engaged, they’ll be heading the investigation,” said Fakas.

“We’re in the process of checking CCTV footage in the area.”

It was too early to say whether the incident was targeted or random, he said.

jenna.mcmurray@sunmedia.ca

On Twitter: @SunJMac

HALIFAX: Shia-Muslim family claims will be persecuted if deported to Iran

Halifax family could be deported to country they’ve never visited

Federal Court of Canada hears unusual refugee case

By Richard Cuthbertson, CBC News Posted: Sep 10, 2014 5:28 PM AT Last Updated: Sep 10, 2014 5:28 PM AT

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/halifax-family-could-be-deported-to-country-they-ve-never-visited-1.2762152

A family living in Halifax is fighting to stay in Canada as refugees. They say they fear they will be deported to Iran, a country they’ve never visited. (CBC)

A family living in Halifax is facing deportation after their refugee claim was rejected earlier this year — but in an unusual twist, they could be sent to a country they’ve never even visited.

Abbas Gholami, his wife Fatemeh Naserian Mochadam, and their five children arrived in Canada a couple of years ago. All family members were born and lived in Kuwait. However, due to family ties they are citizens of Iran.

They say they left Kuwait after years of threatening phone calls from two of Mochadam’s cousins, according to documents filed in the Federal Court of Canada. Mochadam is of Arab descent and says her 1995 marriage to her husband, who is Persian, was viewed as shameful by some relatives who threatened to kill them.

But in February, an Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada tribunal rejected the family’s refugee claim. The Gholamis now face removal from Canada — not to Kuwait, but to Iran, where none of them have lived or visited.

The family is fighting the tribunal’s decision. At a Federal Court hearing in Halifax on Wednesday, the Gholamis’ lawyer argued the family could face persecution if they are sent to Iran.

Scott McGirr says the family identifies as Arab and can’t even speak Farsi, the language of Iran. Arabs, he argues, are discriminated against in Iran.

“Arabs in Iran run a very real risk of persecution,” McGirr told the court.

A federal government lawyer acknowledged this is a “bit of an unusual case,” but argued Wednesday the court should uphold the tribunal’s finding that the Gholamis aren’t refugees.

Government lawyer Patricia MacPhee questioned the veracity of claims by the Gholamis that they faced years of harassment from Mochadam’s cousins. She says the tribunal did not believe the threatening phone calls would have lasted nearly two decades.

She notes that while the family may consider itself Arab, they are also Shia Muslims, the dominant religion in Iran. There is no evidence, MacPhee says, the family would face persecution.

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OTTAWA: Gloucester-Southgate candidate Meladul Haq Ahmadzai wants to implement Islamic rules at city hall

Candidates have some wacky notions 

ron-corbettBY , OTTAWA SUN

FIRST POSTED: | UPDATED: 

If Mike Maguire can sit down yet — after the thorough spanking he received this week over his transit plan — I want him to know the worst is probably behind him.

And for what it’s worth, when Election Day comes around, I don’t think his transit plan will be seen as the worst idea of the campaign.

(…)

Why just this week a candidate in Gloucester-Southgate sent out a press release saying he would adopt sharia law at city hall if he were elected.

Meladul Haq Ahmadzai says sharia law would “restore transparency and accountability at city hall.”

Not a lot of reporters attended his sharia law press conference, nor has Ahmadzai been interviewed all that often, despite his press releases always ending with the cheerful reminder that “the media is welcome to ask questions.” Continue reading

HALIFAX: Immigration consultant Ziad El Shurafa fined $75k for helping clients lie on their Canadian immigration applications

STEVE BRUCE COURT REPORTER
Published September 11, 2014 – 6:49pm
Last Updated September 11, 2014 – 6:49pm

A Halifax immigration consultant who helped clients lie on their Canadian immigration applications has been handed a conditional sentence of two years less a day and fined $75,000.

Ziad El Shurafa, 41, of Bedford pleaded guilty in April to five charges of counselling misrepresentation under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

He was sentenced Thursday in Halifax provincial court.

Judge Michael Sherar said immigration consultants are trusted and regulated to guide people from other countries through Canada’s “daunting” immigration process.

“(An immigration consultant) has a privileged role to play in maintaining the integrity of Canada’s immigration system and the administration of justice,” Sherar said. “They must uphold the rule of law and act at all times honestly and in good faith toward immigration officials, without intent to deceive or undermine the integrity of the system, or assist others to do so.

“And that’s what we have here today.”

Sherar said the courts must deter people like El Shurafa “from trying to deceive the system, trying to circumvent the system, trying to get (their clients) ahead of others.”

“They have to know that if they get caught, they will be punished,” he said. “The way not to get caught is to not commit the crime.”

The judge placed El Shurafa on house arrest for the first year of his conditional sentence. That will be followed by one year with an 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew.

El Shurafa is still allowed to work while he’s serving the conditional sentence and can travel to Dubai, United Arab Emirates, for business purposes as long as he gets the court’s permission first. Continue reading

Government invalidates passports of those who join extremist groups

Government invalidating passports of Canadians who joined extremist groups

Published on: Last Updated: 
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The government has begun invalidating the passports of Canadians who have left the country to join extremist groups in Syria and Iraq, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander revealed in an interview on Friday.

The minister told the National Post his department had also revoked the passports of several Canadians who had not yet left the country but who had intended to travel to the volatile region to enlist as foreign fighters.

He would not disclose the number of passports Citizenship and Immigration Canada had revoked over the conflict but said there were “multiple cases.” The government says about 30 Canadians are with extremist groups in Syria and 130 are active elsewhere.

“Yes, I think it’s safe to say that there are cases of revocation of passports involving people who’ve gone to Syria and Iraq already,” Alexander said. “I just don’t want to get into the numbers, but multiple cases.”

Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander would not disclose the number of passports Citizenship and Immigration Canada had revoked over the conflict but said there were “multiple cases.”

Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander would not disclose the number of passports Citizenship and Immigration Canada had revoked over the conflict but said there were “multiple cases.”

The action means Canadian fighters in Syria and Iraq may effectively be stranded there. Their passports are no longer valid and therefore cannot be used to return to Canada. Nor could they be used to travel elsewhere.

This week the Post revealed the identity of another Canadian with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Mohamed Ali, a 23-year-old from Mississauga, Ont., left Canada in April and later wrote online about playing soccer with severed heads.

Other Canadians allegedly with ISIL and similar extremist groups in the region include Hasibullah Yusifzai of Burnaby, B.C., and Calgary’s Farah Shirdon, who this week threatened attacks on the United States, before Twitter suspended his account.

Alexander said while they were few in number, he was troubled that Canadians had joined ISIL, which has been committing widespread atrocities in an attempt to impose its militant version of Islamic law on Syrians and Iraqis.

“We are not by any means the leading contributor of foreign fighters to Syria, even though the dozens that are there and the 130 that are abroad (with other extremist groups) is a disturbing number for all Canadians. But we want to ensure that Canada’s good name is not besmirched by these people any more than it already has been and that Canadians are protected.”

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Binoy Thomas on why Western-educated Muslims join ISIS

Why Western-educated Muslim Youth Embrace IS?

Why Western-educated Muslim Youth Embrace IS?

Why Western-educated Muslim Youth Embrace IS?

by BINOY THOMAS

Why are so many Muslim youth, born and raised in the liberal West fighting alongside Islamic State for a cause that they believe would see Islam as it existed a thousand years ago, as the dominant force in the world?

What did the West do so wrong that they have pushed them so far into the past to be mindless barbarians?

The liberal Western intellectuals do not want to discuss it, because if you scratch that scab, the fingers will point right back at these very same ivory tower influencers who always had an excuse for all sorts of bad behaviour.

Look at the way, we treat our classrooms, where bad behaviour becomes an opportunity for governments and unions to create committees and reports that put real dollars into the hands of friends and sympathizers. The most egregious of these elements are in the left of the political and media spectrum (ie. if they are any different from each other). I remember one report, some years ago about how many times Ontario students say ‘f— you’ to their teachers, and the people the writer interviewed were all either offering excuses for the abusers or showed no particular alarm at this trend. The writer had his/her own demons to hang out to dry, and that’s not to say, we do not. We all do. There was no one who said that it was just plain wrong and such behaviour has no place in a classroom. That would be considered rude and absolute, an anachronism in our fifty shades of grey universe.

The movement to pass the parcel (student) without testing them for what they have learned (play school stretched into adulthood) is yet another case of justifying bad attitude of those not wanting to put in the time to study. It might help the teachers to become even lazier than required under the law, but really, are we doing the young ones a favour? Or are we pushing them to be dealers?

What do we do with most acts of criminality, especially when committed by the youth? We blame poverty, lack of opportunity, social service cuts, shortage of basketball courts, discrimination, low intellect, alcohol abuse, climate change, anything at all that can help us detach ourselves from the actual job of stating the obvious or passing judgement. Often, after I read certain verdicts from the Canadian courts, I get the feeling the judge was simply too lazy to write a few more extra pages, which you need to do when finding someone guilty, and instead let someone walk with a gentle admonishment. Nobody wants to call a spade a spade without running the risk of being painted as a zealot. Continue reading

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