Muslim World News

Muslim World News

13 killed in Baghdad bomb blasts

Baghdad : As many as 13 people have been killed in two explosions in Iraq's capital Baghdad Monday, a police source said.

Thirteen people were killed and 45 others injured when two car bombs exploded in Bayaa area in south Baghdad, Xinhua quoted the source as saying.

The massive blast also destroyed several nearby buildings and vehicles.

Iraq has been witnessing some of its worst violence in recent years.

First batch of Pakistani government Haj pilgrims arrive

Jeddah : The first Haj flight arrived in Jeddah from Peshawar on Sunday carrying pilgrims under the official Government of Pakistan Scheme.

Global housing firm: Rebuilding Gaza will take 20 years

Jerusalem : An international organization involved in assessing post-conflict reconstruction says it will take 20 years under current levels of restrictions to rebuild the Gaza Strip's battered and neglected housing stock following the war between Hamas and Israel.

Temporary halt to Makkah Haram expansion

Makkah : Sultan Al-Qurashi, the head of projects at the Presidency of the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, said all development work at the Grand Mosque would be temporarily halted from the middle of this month.

He added this was due to the Haj season, which witnesses huge numbers of worshippers and pilgrims, but all maintenance work would continue as usual. He pointed out the contracting company is finalizing the installation of escalators, lifts and bridges before the break, while work will resume after the end of the Haj season.

Indians in Saudi Arabia asked to get machine-readable passports

Riyadh : The Indian embassy in Saudi Arabia has appealed to all Indians living in the kingdom to get machine-readable passports issued as soon as possible, a media report said Monday.

The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) will phase out non-machine-readable passports by Nov 24, 2015, Arab News quoted Indian embassy spokesperson Surinder Bhagat as saying.

"Foreign governments may deny visas or even entry on old passports," he said.

"This is why Indian citizens living across the kingdom are advised to change their passports as soon as they can."

Nigerian troops, Boko Haram militants exchange gunfire

Abuja : Heavy gunfire was heard Monday from the scene of a gunfight between Nigerian security forces and suspected members of the Boko Haram in the restive northeastern state of Borno, residents said.

Heavy gun shots were heard at Goneri, a community in Bama, the second largest city in Borno State, residents told a Xinhua reporter via phone call.

Ibrahim Mohammed, a leader of a youth volunteer force, said the attack by the militants was repelled by the security forces who promptly responded to a distress call by residents.

Saudi preacher jailed for praising IS

Riyadh : A court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced a preacher to five years in jail for praising the Islamic State (IS) Sunni militant organisation during an Eid sermon at a mosque in Riyadh in 2013, a media report said Monday.

Riyadh's special criminal court also convicted the preacher, who was not named, of financially supporting terrorism, and slapped a five-year travel ban on him, an Arab News report said.

The preacher had earlier received a letter from the ministry of Islamic affairs ordering him to stop delivering sermons at the mosque.

Indian in UAE unable to pay hospital bills

Abu Dhabi : An uninsured Indian man in the UAE has run up more than $160,000 in medical bills after he suffered a brain haemorrhage and spent about six months in an Abu Dhabi hospital, a media report said.

The hospital, however, says it is not demanding the money and he should just go home.

Shariq Alvi, 26, was found unconscious on the bathroom floor by his family. A medical investigation at the Lifeline Hospital in the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) capital found that a a blood vessel in his brain had ruptured, The National reported Sunday.

200,000 Indians granted Saudi visas in one month

Riyadh : More than 200,000 Indians, mostly domestic helpers and labourers, were granted visas by Saudi authorities in one month, an official said Monday.

"Since we resumed bringing in Indian workers at the end of Ramadan (in July), the number of visas has reached 220,000," Gulf News quoted Ahmad Al Fuhaid, the labour ministry undersecretary for international affairs, as saying.

"Around 44,000 visas were for domestic helpers while the others were for workers in the public and private sectors," he said.

1,420 people killed in Iraq in August: UN

Baghdad : A total of 1,420 Iraqis have been killed and 1,370 injured in terrorist attacks and violence during August, the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) said in a statement Monday.

The statement said that 1,265 civilians, including 77 policemen, and 155 Iraqi security forces personnel were killed, Xinhua reported.

At least 1,198 civilians, including 105 civilian policemen, were wounded.