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By Lina Sinjab 
BBC News, Damascus

Iraqi dancers
Many of the Iraqi dancers are in their early teens
With their bright neon signs and glitzy decor, dozens of nightclubs line the streets of the Maraba district in the Syrian capital Damascus.

It's here that men come from far and wide - car number plates are not just from Syria but Iraq and Saudi Arabia - to watch young women dancing.

Most of the dancers are teenagers and many of them are Iraqi refugees.

They dance for the cash which gets tossed onto the stage.

The dancers are surrounded by bodyguards, to stop them being touched by the men. But the guards also arrange for their charges to be paid for sex with members of the audience.

 A woman came to my mother, who agreed to send me to these places. We needed the money 

Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi refugees have moved to Syria and Jordan during the past four years, escaping the violence and instability that followed the US-led toppling of Saddam Hussein.

Women supporting families face the greatest challenge.

The Syrian authorities and aid agencies do not know the exact numbers, but many of the women say they have little choice but to work in places like Maraba.

Lost innocence

Rafif is an innocent-looking 14-year-old, her long hair tied in a pony tail. She seems barely to understand the enormity of the crisis she is living.

"I have three sisters who are married and four brothers. They are all in Baghdad. I am here with my mother and young brother only. None of my family know what I do here."


Banned from doing regular work in Syria, she says their money ran out and her mother started looking for other means to survive.

She says she makes about $30 a night at the clubs, but when men take her to private villas she makes $100. She won't say what she must do to earn this money.

"A woman came and spoke to my mother, who agreed to send me to these places. We needed the money.

"I have already been arrested for prostitution and sent back to Iraq, but I came back with a false passport."

Not all sex workers went into the industry by choice.

Nada, 16, says was dumped by her father at the Iraq-Syria border after her cousin "took away my virginity".

Five Iraqi men took her from the border to Damascus, where they raped her and sold her to a woman who forced her to work in nightclubs and private villas.

She is now waiting at a government protection centre to be deported back to Iraq.


The government says police have arrested Iraqi girls as young as 12 working as prostitutes in the nightclubs.

Maraba nightclub
Maraba's nightclubs advertise services seldom on show in Syria
"We are coming across increasing numbers of women who do not manage to make ends meet and are therefore more vulnerable to exploitative situations such as prostitution," says Laurens Jolles of the UN refugee agency.

"Intimidation and shame means the numbers of trafficking victims and sex industry workers in Syria may never be known by government or aid agencies."

Women picked up by the police are sent to protection centres, which they frequently escape from, or are sent to prison.

"Immediately after we get to them, or sometimes before, they are bailed out of prison, often by the same people who probably forced them into prostitution," says Mr Jolles.

Many of the young women who leave Iraq hoping for an easier, safer existence find what is in some ways an even tougher life in Syria.

At an age when life should just be beginning, Iraqi teenagers like Nada feel they have reached a dead end.

"Now they will send me back to Iraq, I have no-one there and in any case I am afraid for my life. I have no hope leaving here. I have told the government I don't want to go back. My family has abandoned me." 

Gay Iraqis fear for their lives
By Michael McDonough 
BBC News website

Hussein says he is afraid to go outdoors
"I don't want to be gay anymore. When I go out to buy bread, I'm afraid. When the doorbell rings, I think that they have come for me."

That is the fear that haunts Hussein, and other gay men in Iraq.

They say that since the US-led invasion, gay people are being killed because of their sexual orientation.

They blame the increase in violence on the growing influence of religious figures and militia groups in Iraq since Saddam Hussein was ousted.

Islam considers homosexuality sinful. A website published in the Iranian city of Qom in the name of Ayatollah Sistani, Iraq's most revered Shia cleric, says: "Those who commit sodomy must be killed in the harshest way".

Ayatollah Sistani
Sistani's official website calls for gay men to be executed
The statement appears in Arabic section of the website, in a section dealing with questions of morality, but not in the English-language equivalent.

The BBC asked Mr Sistani's representative, Seyed Kashmiri, to explain the ruling.

"Homosexuals and lesbians are not killed for practising their inclinations for the first time," Mr Kashmiri said in a response sent via email.

"There are certain conditions drawn out by jurists before this punishment can be implemented, which is perhaps similar to the punishment meted out by other heavenly religions."

Mr Kashmiri added: "Some rulings that are drawn out by jurists are done so on a theoretical basis. Not everything that is said is implemented."

Violent attacks

Killings and kidnappings are widespread in Iraq, with much of the bloodshed being linked to sectarian tensions and the anti-US insurgency.

Dina - a transsexual killed in Baghdad in 2005
Dina, a transsexual, was killed in Baghdad last year

But homosexual Iraqis who have spoken to the BBC say they are also being targeted because of their sexual orientation.

Hussein is 32 and lives in Baghdad with his brother, sister-in-law and nieces.

He says his effeminate appearance and demeanour make him stand out and attract hostility.

"My brother's friends told him: 'In the current chaos you could get away with killing your brother without retribution and get rid of this shame,'" Hussein said, after agreeing to speak to the BBC only if his real name was not used.

A transsexual friend of his, who had changed names from Haydar to Dina, was killed on her way to a party in Baghdad about six months ago, Hussein said.

Gym terror

Ahmed is a 31-year-old interior decorator who used to live in Baghdad with his boyfriend, Mazin.

Ahmed fled to Jordan nine months ago after Mazin was murdered outside a gym.

 I fled from Iraq because of the threat to my life 

After his partner was shot dead, Ahmed hid in the gym toilets then slipped away and later flew to Amman, the Jordanian capital.

He says it was well known that they were a couple and Mazin was targeted because of his sexuality.

"I fled from Iraq because of the threat to my life, because I was a gay man," he told the BBC.

Ahmed also said that, before the gym shooting, he and a gay friend had survived a grenade attack and he still had fragments of shrapnel in his face.

The friend was killed a week later by gunmen who raided his house, he added.

Powerful militia

Iraq's deputy interior minister Maj Gen Hussein Kamal told the BBC that he was unaware of any minority groups being specifically targeted for kidnappings and killings.

He also said he was unaware of the statement on Ayatollah Sistani's website calling for gay people to be killed.

But he added: "We do not condone vigilante action. We encourage the victims to inform the authorities if they are subjected to any attacks."

However, Hussein says gay people are afraid of the police.

The Interior Ministry is run by members of Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (Sciri), which is one of Iraq's country's leading Shia parties.

Sciri has its own militia, the Badr Brigades, and there are widespread concerns that large parts of Iraq's police force are under the control of such groups.

Hussein blames the Badr Brigades and other Shia militia for many of the attacks on gay Iraqis.

 Saddam was a tyrant, but at least we had more freedom then 

Human rights group Amnesty International has focused most of its work in Iraq on the high levels of violence linked to the insurgency.

The organisation said it had no information on reports of anti-gay activities in the country.

"It is not an area that we have been actively looking at, but that is not to say that we will not look into the issue at some point," said a spokesman at the group's London headquarters.

But Hussein, Ahmed and gay activists outside Iraq say there is clear evidence that the situation has deteriorated dramatically for Iraqi homosexuals.

"Saddam was a tyrant, but at least we had more freedom then," said Hussein. "Nowadays, gay men are just killed for no reason."

Arabic interviews by Muhayman Jamil 



‘Freedom’ to Rape Prostitutes in Iraq: Fun and Porn for the Boys

Suki Falconberg

Suki Falconberg Ph.D.

January 09, 2007

My fury is high, and I am seeing red, and I don’t quite know quite where to start in response to one ofNewsweek’s usual pieces: a sexist, patriarchal, overweeningly male, massively chauvinistic (that useful word bequeathed to us by the feminists of the 60’s), on-the-surface story about how booze and drugs and whores are rampant in Iraq due to the American presence. Now young Iraqi men can easily have access to bodies. The author of this particular piece, called “Iraqi Vice” (Dec. 22), is Christian Caryl, and he tells of a typical journey from a village to Baghdad by a young male named Ali who, as soon as he gets off the bus, heads to a well-known alley where he plunks down $1.50 to buy 15 minutes with a woman. (Woman? What are the ages of the ‘women’ held here? Are they girls? Caryl does not bother to ask or to find out. ) “The room is a cell with only a curtain for a door, and Ali complains that Abu Abdullah’s women should bathe more often,” writes Caryl.

Is Abu Abdullah the pimp, the ‘owner’ of the girls? Why didn’t Caryl interview him to see where he bought the girls from?

Why didn’t Caryl ask why the girls were dirty? There is a reason prostitutes don’t bathe more often. The kind of filth they need to wash away is not amenable to soap and water. The filth that men like Ali deposit inside is so indelible and deep, that even scrubbing the vagina away, until it is raw and dead, will not take away the true dirt. The filth of being raped all day, for $1.50 a shot, can’t ever be washed away.

Caryl’s second enlightening comment on prostitutes in this piece is that the girls now have ‘nothing to fear’ since American MP’s make the cops in this district release the prostitutes if they are arrested. Back to the pimps? That’s not much of a release. And as for them having ‘nothing to fear,’ the prostitution-rape these girls undergo everyday is greatly to be feared. As is the everpresent possibility of physical violence. As is the psychological misery and destruction and pain that accompanies the violation of their bodies.

Why didn’t Caryl go behind the curtain and interview the girl? Why was she so unimportaint that he didn’t even give her a voice? Is she just an unwashed body, an unbathed whore, with no humanity or identity? I would ask this journalist: Is she just a hole that men stick it in for fifteen minutes at $1.50 a shot?

There is no female perspective in this article. But then there is no female perspective in the media. Every day journalists all over the world crank out articles just like this one—exclusively from the merciless, male point-of-view: without pity or empathy for the raped.

Ali is quoted as saying that the availability of these whores, unwashed as they are, is “a big improvement from Saddam Hussein’s day. Back then, he says, the only establishment for a poor boy like himself was a Gypsy settlement on the capital’s western outskirts. ‘But now there are plenty of places,’ he grins. ‘Now we have freedom.’”

Okay, I guess this is a male version of ‘freedom’—to be able to ram a hole for 15 minutes for $1.50. But does the girl he is ramming consider this ‘freedom’? Why didn’t Caryl ask her? (I’d also like to know what happened to those poor Gypsy girls.)

I would like Caryl to ask her other questions. Is she being rammed all day? Does she ever get to rest? What kind of physical and emotional shape is she in? How did she get here, in this brothel bed, behind a curtain? Is she hurting from the constant use by strangers? Does she have venereal diseases? Is she receiving any medical care? Does she have children? Does she get to keep any of the money or is she just a revolving sex-door for the men? Does she want to be here?

What woman or girl would invite this treatment, I wonder? Sexless, ‘loveless sex,’ sex without tenderness or caring, sex done anonymously, 15 minutes of being rammed by someone she doesn’t know, and then the next man gets on. Why is this woman’s point-of-view so negligible that this journalist did not go behind the curtain, to speak to her?

Is there never a journalist, anywhere, male or female, who asks these questions and writes about the world from the rape-battered woman’s point of view? Why do we never hear the words of the millions upon millions of women and girls and children being sold every day for a dollar or two (or even less) a rape? I don’t care which publication I go to—Newsweek, Time, US News & World Report, all the major papers—they only see the world from Ali’s point of view. His ‘grin’ as he talks about raping a whore body is apparently a far more salient journalistic detail than is the pain of that raped body. Why this should be so is great mystery to me.

Caryl also reports massive attendance at porn films in Baghdad, now everywhere since the American presence took hold.

Girls have gone missing in Iraq? Have they been trafficked and put in brothels, for Ali’s use? And, of course, my big question, are the American and British soldiers also taking advantage of these vulnerable, helpless girls? I don’t have contact with military men anymore, but I would like to talk to those American MP’s who make sure the prostitutes are released. I would like to ask them, and other soldiers who have been in Iraq, if they are buying bodies. (Is this the reason the MP’s make sure the girls are let go—so they will also be available for our men?) If American men are buying bodies over there, then they’re not really promoting ‘freedom.’ As I have written elsewhere, freedom does not exist for raped bodies.

I can’t do much about the behavior of rapists like Ali, but I can definitely raise my voice in protest when I see my men exploiting girls—anywhere in the world. These American men belong to me, in a sense. They are my model of freedom and goodness, and they are my protectors from oppression. I want other men to emulate my men. It hurts me if my men are hurting girls in Iraq, or anywhere around the world.

Caryl’s end note is quite puzzling. He quotes an Iraqi leader, Fuad al Rawi, as saying, “We can’t forbid freedom.” Then Caryl says, “Still, some people are always ready to try. That’s how people like Saddam came to power.” What kind of ‘freedom’ are these men (Caryl and Fuad al Rawi) talking about? The freedom of other men to traffic girls and make big profits off of them? The freedom of men to buy and rape girls for fun and sexual release? The freedom of men to sit and hoot at this spectacle we call hard-core porn, an industry that relies on Viagra-soaked men giving endless anal poundings to stiff, reluctant bodies (where is the foreplay, or anything like human interaction in all this male-designed porn?—but that is a subject for a whole other article).

A last question: Where is the voice of ordinary Iraqi women in all this? If we have liberated all these Iraqi women, and given them American-style ‘freedom,’ why are they not protesting the rape of their sisters?

Caryl’s male window on the world is depressing and dark beyond belief. There is no hope for the women of the world as long as journalists record ‘reality’ in such a narrow, sad way—only from the point of view of the rapist, not of the raped.

Afternote: I assume from the name, Christian, that Caryl is a male. If I have the gender wrong, it doesn’t much matter since all women journalists also record the world from the male point-of-view: they can’t help it—it is how they have been taught. I recorded the world from the male point-of-view until I was raped and decided that there must be a better way of looking at reality.

Gays flee Iraq as Shia death squads find a new target

Evidence shows increase in number of executions as homosexuals plead for asylum in Britain

Hardline Shiite insurgent groups in Iraq are targeting a new type of victim with the full protection of Iraqi law, The Observer can reveal. The country is seeing a sudden escalation of brutal attacks on what are being called the 'immorals' - homosexual men and children as young as 11 who have been forced into same-sex prostitution.

There is growing evidence that Shia militias have been killing men suspected of being gay and children who have been sold to criminal gangs to be sexually abused. The threat has led to a rapid increase in the numbers of Iraqi homosexuals now seeking asylum in the UK because it has become impossible for them to live safely in their own country.

Ali Hili runs the Iraqi LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) group out of London. He used to have 40 volunteers in Iraq but says after recent raids by militia in Najaf, Karbala and Basra he has lost contact with half of them. They move to different safe houses to protect their identities, but their work is incredibly dangerous.

Eleven-year-old Ameer Hasoon al-Hasani was kidnapped by policemen from the front of his house last month. He was known in his district to have been forced into prostitution. His father Hassan told me he searched for his son for three days after his abduction, then found him, shot in the head. A copy of the death certificate confirms the cause of death.

Homosexuality is seen as so immoral that it qualifies as an 'honour killing' to murder someone who is gay - and the perpetrator can escape punishment. Section 111 of Iraq's penal code lays out protections for murder when people are acting against Islam.

'The government will do nothing to tackle this issue. It's really desperate when people get to the stage they're trading their children for money. They have no alternatives because there are no jobs,' Hili says.

Graphic photos obtained from Baghdad sources too frightened to identify themselves as having known a gay man, and seen by the Observer, show other gay Iraqis who have been executed. One shows two men, suspected of having a relationship, blindfolded with their hands tied behind their backs - guns at the ready behind their heads - awaiting execution. Another picture captured on a mobile phone shows a gay man being beaten to death. Yet another shows a corpse being dragged through the streets after his execution.

One photograph is of the mutilated, burnt body of 38-year-old Karar Oda from Sadr City. He was kidnapped by the Badr Brigade in mid-June. They work with the Ministry of Interior and are the informal armed wing of the Supreme Council of Islamic Revolution in Iraq, who make up the largest Shia bloc in the Iraq parliament. Oda's family were given an arrest warrant signed by the Ministry of Interior which said their son deserved to be arrested and killed for immorality as a homosexual. His body was found ten days later.

Dr Haider Jaber is currently seeking asylum in the UK after fleeing Iraq in 2004. He says the abuse started to escalate in his neighbourhood after the invasion. One night, walking home from work, he was surrounded by five men, who told him he had to become a heterosexual Muslim. He says they abused him for wearing jeans and a T-shirt with English writing, and told him he should adopt traditional robes. As a crowd gathered to watch, he was then beaten and kicked to the ground.

The threats continued. Armed militiamen broke into his family home and then his workplace looking for him. Jaber finally left the country in April. His partner, Ali. was not so lucky. Jaber learned of his Ali's murder a few days after leaving Iraq. 'They didn't send the body to the family to have a grave or a flower garden. They said he didn't deserve it because he was an animal,' he said.

Ibaa Alawi has also fled Iraq. A former employee at the British embassy in Baghdad, Alawi met Tony Blair on one of his surprise visits to Iraq. He said Blair was concerned about the safety of the Iraqis working there and praised their bravery. 'Tony Blair said the British government was thankful for our efforts and knew we were putting our lives at risk working for the British embassy in Baghdad.'

Alawi is upset the same government is not willing to help him out. He believes the Home Office will refuse him asylum because it would have to face up to the level of chaos in Iraq, and how much influence is being waged by radical Shiite Islamists - and face the fact that, for some, there is still no freedom in Iraq.

Iraqis love boys and our work is to offer pleasure to them," the ring leader, who calls himself Abu Weled (or “father of the boys”), said. “They are all gay and, in Iraq, the homosexual is something cheap and bad, but we make them feel special when working with us.”

Abu Weled’s gang also has some girls under 16 years of age soliciting for him, he said.


Under Shari’ah or Islamic law, homosexual practise is a religious crime that carries the death sentence.

The transition constitution in place in Iraq for the past two years does not address homosexuality. A new constitution is currently being drafted.

Whether or not homosexuality it illegal, it is a taboo subject in Iraq and homosexual acts are strongly condemned by Muslims. Yet, these prostitution rings suggest, there is a demand for commercial sex workers to engage in homosexual acts.

Sheikh Hussein Salah, one of the heads of the Shi’ite Muslim community in Iraq, told IRIN in Baghdad that the families of those boys engaged in homosexual practices should “kill them”, whether the situation was forced on them or they entered into it freely.

During Saddam Hussein's regime, Salah said, homosexuality was illegal and homosexual practices were punishable by death. “We hope that this will be applied under the new constitution,” he added.

Some Baghdadi families said they have stopped their children from going to school or university for fear that they would be lured into the unacceptable trade.

"If I found that my son was doing something like that, I would kill him straight away, because it is an offence to our God and a crime against our honour,” Kudaifa Abdul Lateff, father of three teenagers said. “Homosexuals are nothing more than animals.”


Rising unemployment, compounded by conflict, has led to the desperate search for money to survive, despite the physical, psychological and health dangers involved in commercial sex work, local officials say.

According to a survey by the Iraqi Ministry of Planning and Development Cooperation released in April, 48 percent of youths in the country are unemployed, most of them discouraged by poor salaries in those jobs that are available.

“We are a poor family and my husband cannot work because he has serious epilepsy,” Um Zacarias, a mother of two child sex workers, said. “Three months ago, Abu Weled came to our house offering us money if we let our two teenage [aged 13 and 14] boys work with them.

“Thanks to him, today we have a good income. People may find it surprising, but at least we can eat now and I'm proud of them.”


The Ministry of Interior, after an appeal by the Ministry of Labour, has started a new commission to search for the ring leaders and tackle families sending their children into the sex trade.

A senior interior ministry official, who preferred to remain anonymous for his own security, said that leaders of two gangs in Baghdad had been captured so far.

More than 15 boys were also being questioned, he said. Their families had not been given the real reason for their detention, in case they responded with threats or violence to the boys.

“When you hear what the teenagers have been through, you really fear for your own children,” the ministry official said. “They could fall victim any minute to these heartless gangs.”

The Ministry of Labour has also developed a programme, focusing on non-judgemental psychological counselling, to rehabilitate boys who want to return to a normal life without suffering social discrimination.


Based on information supplied by the Ministry of Labour, two small local NGOs are trying to help the child sex workers. On of them, Iraqi Peace and Better Future (IPBF), has collected the names of more than 50 teenage boys who say they cannot leave the trade because of threats. Few cases have been resolved, however.

"We have been trying to do our best in taking those unlucky boys and girls from the streets of the capital,” said Abdallah Jassim, spokesman for IPBF. “But sometimes we are stopped by the gangs, who threaten us. And the government cannot offer us special security on a daily basis."

The Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) is also waiting for approval and funding for a proposed rehabilitation project for teenagers, it said. So far it has had few donors.

Meanwhile, with few positive prospects in sight, many boys in Baghdad are living in fear, urging that someone, somewhere come up with a solution to their plight.

“I hope that one day I will live without the fear that I may find my father with a gun or a knife ready to kill me because he has discovered what I do for a living," said Youssef Hatab, a 15 year-old boy.

Source: IRINnews
This article does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies, reprinted with permission.

MISS IRAQ®2008, Myra Adel

MISS TEEN IRAQ ® 2008 -Hind Naser

The first annual Miss Teen Iraq pageant took place Jan. 10, 2008, in Nice, France. The winner was Myra Adel, 19, who became the ninth titleholder. (The Miss Teen Iraq title was awarded to the third runner-up at the Miss Iraq pageant from 2000 to 2007. This was the first time that the pageants were held separately.) The first runner-up was Hind Naser, and the second runner-up was Umaya Salman. The third runner-up was Hamida Azhar, and the fourth runner-up was Wassan Qaerdar. The Miss Congeniality award went to Zeena Hisham. The event was organized by Talat Model Management, producers of Miss Iraq, Miss Teen Iraq, Mister Iraq and Super Model of Iraq competitions. It was hosted by Miss Iraq 2000, Daniela Lednicer, and Miss Iraq 2002, Anisa Abdi. By winning Miss Teen Iraq, Ms. Adel automatically won the right to compete at Miss Iraq two days later in Nice. And, on Jan. 12, she was crowned Miss Iraq. That meant that the Teen title automatically passed to first runner-up Hind Nasser. The first runner-up to Miss Iraq was Jessica Kadoorie, 19, and the second runner-up was Yusra Kadret, 23, whose sister, Ban Kadret, won the Miss Iraq title in 1998 and the 2000 Elite Model Look of Iraq contest. The third runner-up was Yeala Ibrahimi, and the fourth runner-up was Nurit Shlomo. Named Queen of Lagash was Nurit Shlomo; Queen of Assyria -- Karima Nouman; Queen of Ur -- Yeala Ibrahimi; Queen of Babel -- Yusra Kadret; Queen of Nimrod -- Nurdan Zeki; Queen of Akkad -- Jessica Kadoorie; Queen of Sumer -- Ilana Sassoon.

ARTICLE FROM www.pageant.com



Amman - Jordan Date: AUGUST 13th 2007

Silva Sahagian,24 ,Miss Iraq 2006 was sent home when she arrived at the Amman airport on August 12th, Jordanian authorities held her at a detention room along with other passengers for hours before sending her back on the next flight to Iraq, Miss Sahagian had taken some snapshots of the room where she was annihilated, and treated very poorly, with almost nothing to eat or drink she was locked in a room and then asked to leave Jordan. The Kingdom of Jordan has been treating Iraqis in an ill manner, often not granting Iraqis entry into Jordan, despite the fact that the United Nations granted funds to Jordan and Syria for allowing Iraqis to seek refuge temporarily until security is restored in Iraq.

The Ethnic violence in Iraq has escalated over the past few months and hundreds of thousands fled the country settling in neighboring Jordan and Syria. 

All Arab countries have strict laws regarding Iraqis, they don't grant Iraqis visas nor work permits, even to those calibers who hold PhD's and Masters degrees, such tough measures have been in effect since the early 1990's right after the Iraq / Kuwait war. Some countries like Qatar have issued a ban on beauty queens, often not allowing them on Qatari soil.

While western style pageants are not popular, In Egypt, an Egyptian event planner Ms. Hanane Naser organized the Miss Arab World pageant, she has organized an event that seems to conform to Islamic customs, though the title had been plagiarized by the Egyptian events company and while the owner of the MISS ARAB WORLD trademark is a Lebanese by the name of Johnny Fadlallah and his website www.missarabworld.com doesn't mention any official Miss Arab World pageant, The Egyptian company and for the second year in a row the pageant has been organized in Egypt and recently a veiled Shiite Bahraini girl won the event. The 2006 Miss Arab World title was held by Nadia Bin Fadla from Tunisia and then runner up, Iraqi Claudia Hanna took over. To enter this contest you don't need to win any National Title as preliminary to the fraudulent Miss Arab World pageant.

Source: MISS ARAB WORLD http://www.waleg.com/archives/004793.html


Organizer of Miss Arab World event is: http://www.motionmedi.com


"Dear Dr. Faraj;

I just want you to know that I came to Amman on the 12th as I mentioned to you, but what happened that the Jordanian check up officers at the airport didn't allow me to pass to Amman.

They put me in a room and locked the door on me and all I had was a dirty blanket, they forced me to stay in that room for the whole day and they put me on the next flight back to Baghdad on the next morning.

They treated me very bad worst than the animals could be treaded, they didn't appreciate the medical reports that I had from you and from the doctors here.

I tried to call you when I was locked in that dirty room but your phone wasn't answering.

They even didn't tell me that they are sending me back until very late at night

It was very humiliated situation and they showed no respect, they almost curst me and yelled at me when I was asking why they locked me in!!!

The strange thing that they checked some Iraqis in who their reason of visiting Amman was only for tourism!!

I just want you to know what happend and why I didn't show up

Thanks for your help"


Silva Sahagian

Expert: No peace with Muslims, ever


Professor Moshe Sharon tells counter-terrorism conference Iran's regime is seeking Armageddon, says no peace ever possible with Muslim world

Yaakov Lappin
Published:  09.14.06, 16:38


The Iranian government is seeking nuclear weapons in order to bring about an apocalypse, Professor Moshe Sharon, a professor of Islamic studies from the Hebrew University, told the annual conference at the Counter-Terrorism Institute in Herzliya Thursday.

Global Threat
Ahmadinejad: We can better lead the world  / Associated Press
Iranian president says nuclear standoff with West can be resolved peacefully; adds: ‘there is no need for UN sanctions against his country; US should moderate its language’
Full story


Sharon said there was "no possibility of peace between Israel and the Palestinians whatsoever, for ever," since the Arab and Islamic world viewed the establishment of Israel as a "reversal of history," and would never accept Israel .


He described peace agreements with Arab Muslim states as "pieces of paper, parts of tactics, strategies," adding that they have "no meaning."


"The root of the problem between us and the Arab world is Islam. Islam is not only a religion. It is a culture, politics… a state, Islam is everything. It has been like this, and it will be like this for the foreseeable future," Sharon said.


"Islam is a messianic religion… from the very beginning, it talked about the end of the world," Sharon said. In Islam, "Allah is the king of the end of days," Sharon explained, before addressing the Shiite Islam guiding Iran .


According to Sharon, the Iranian regime genuinely believes that the Shiite messiah, the twelfth Imam (also known as the Mahdi), "is here. And he will come. And first, he will establish the Shiite house of Ali. This is a time of messianic expectation."


"What moves today the Iranian government, prime minister, is first and foremost the wish to bring about the twelfth Imam." The power of the ayatollahs in Iran came from the grassroots and popular belief that they can "contact the Mahdi. Everybody believes," Sharon said.


'Nuclear weapons for apocalypse'

"How will they bring him? By an apocalypse. He (the Mahdi) needs a war. He cannot come into this world without an Armageddon. He wants an Armageddon. The earlier we understand, the better. Ahmadinejad wants nuclear weapons for this," Sharon declared.


Israel was a side issue for Iran, the professor said, adding that Iran was using Israel as a means "to enter the Islamic world" and dominate it. "But they cannot bluff the Saudis, the Wahabbis… the Shiite are hated by the Sunnis. The Saudis are far more apprehensive of nuclear weapons in the hands of Iran than Israel," he said.


Speaking to Ynetnews about the possibility of a military conflict with Iran, Sharon said: "The only way to avoid military confrontation with Iran is to leave this military confrontation to powers bigger than Israel."


"I'm not so sure that the business with Iran will be finished without confrontation, but it's not an Israeli business," he added.

"World Leaders Condemn Iranian's Call to Wipe Israel 'Off the Map'." ... "In a joint statement, the E.U. leaders "condemned in the strongest terms" the Iranian president's call, saying it "will cause concern about Iran's role in the region and its future intentions." President Jacques Chirac of France told reporters that Ahmadinejad risked Iran "being left on the outside of other nations."" ... "Russia's foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, in Israel, called the Iranian president's statement "unacceptable."" ... "The statement was widely reported in the Arab world; leaders there reacted for the most part with silence. Most Arab countries have no diplomatic relations with Israel. But the Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erekat, said, according to the Associated Press: "We have recognized the state of Israel and we are pursuing a peace process with Israel, and . . . we do not accept the statements of the president of Iran. This is unacceptable."" ... "U.S. and European leaders have grown increasingly worried about the bellicose attitude of Iran at a time when it is pursuing a nuclear program that they have said may be intended to produce a nuclear weapon."

World Leaders Condemn Iranian's Call to Wipe Israel 'Off the Map'

The landslide that carried Ahmadinejad into office was grounded in promises of economic improvement, tapping broad public appetite for social justice similar to the sentiments that fueled the 1979 overthrow of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Since taking office in August, Ahmadinejad has moved to share the wealth from Iran's oil exports, offering legislation to establish what officials call a "love fund" to distribute cash to newlyweds.

But as a foreign policy novice, he has stumbled frequently in dealings with the outside world. The strident tone of a speech he delivered to the U.N. General Assembly in September alienated many of the diplomats who Iran was trying to influence before a possible vote on its nuclear program.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair, right, and French President Jacques Chirac, left, were among the 25 European Union leaders who excoriated Iran.
British Prime Minister Tony Blair, right, and French President Jacques Chirac, left, were among the 25 European Union leaders who excoriated Iran. (Pool Photo/by Patrick Kovarik Via Associated Press)

"He has not yet moved from a leader of an ideological faction to the presidency of the country," said Nasser Hadian-Jazy, a political science professor at Tehran University who has known Ahmadinejad since childhood.

By contrast, Ahmadinejad's predecessor, Mohammad Khatami, was known for erudition and for softening Iran's international image with frequent calls for "a dialogue between civilizations."

At Friday prayers last week, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country's supreme leader, appeared to subtly distance himself from the new president and at the same time urged Iranians to give his government time "to get on with it."

"It is a short period of time since the establishment of the government, some two or two-and-a-half months," Khamenei said. He then continued on to attack Israel and the "war-mongering and extremist American administration, attempting to create an empire and to dominate the world."

In Tel Aviv, Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres said: "I don't see such a crazy declaration being made by a head of state, a member of the United Nations. . . . It is unbearable. He cannot remain a member."

In Washington, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Iran must "start behaving in a responsible manner as a member of the international community, cease its pursuit of nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, end its support for terror, and stop oppressing its own people."

Vick reported from Istanbul. Correspondent Scott Wilson in Jerusalem and staff writer Robin Wright in Washington contributed to this report.


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