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Pakistani mob destroys 100-year-old minority Ahmadi mosque

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…After bomb blast kills At least 4, and injured 15 in Baghdad***

A mob led by right-wing Muslim clerics tore down the dome and minarets of a 100-year old Pakistani mosque belonging to the marginalized Ahmadi community, officials and the community said on Thursday.

Ahmadis are one of the most persecuted groups in Sunni-majority Pakistan, with Islamists and religious hardliners labelling them heretics, while harsh Pakistani laws ban them from calling themselves Muslims or using Islamic symbols.

Saleemuddin, a spokesman for the Ahmadi community, said a mob stormed the mosque complex in Sialkot, near the Indian border in Punjab province, overnight.

He put the number at several hundred.

He said there was collusion between the mob and local government officials, but police denied such accusations.

Asad Sarfraz, a police official, said municipal government officials were at the mosque complex removing what he called “illegal renovation”.

“An emotionally charged mob of people belonging to different groups and segments of society reached there and damaged several parts of the building,” Sarfraz said.

Sarfraz said about 60 to 70 people were involved and authorities were attempting to identify the attackers.

Saleemuddin denied the renovation work was illegal and said the community had obtained permission from the local government to upgrade the building. He shared an application approved by the municipal government with Reuters.

A social media video of the attack’s aftermath shows a crowd cheering a local cleric, who then claims to have ransacked the mosque.

“I want to thank the Sialkot administration, the District Police Officer, District Commissioner, the Town Municipal Corporation, from the bottom of my heart,” said the cleric, from the majority Sunni community.

“Because as Muslims it was your responsibility to complete this work.”

The Ahmadis consider themselves to be Muslims but their recognition of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, who founded the sect in British-ruled India in 1889, as a “subordinate prophet” is viewed by many of the Sunni majority as a breach of the Islamic tenet that the Prophet Mohammad was God’s last direct messenger.

In the meantime, at least four people were killed and 15 wounded in a suicide attack in Iraq’s capital Baghdad on Thursday, a military spokesman said.
The attack took place in the predominantly Shi’ite Shula district, in northwest Baghdad.
According to a statement from Iraq’s National Security Media Centre, the attacker detonated an explosive vest after he was besieged by security forces at the entrance to the Saqlawiyah Park, resulting in the death and injury of “a number of civilians.”
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, though it bore the hallmarks of Islamic State.
Iraq declared victory over the hardline Sunni militant group in December 2017.
Although the group has largely been defeated, it continues to carry out sporadic attacks and operate limited cells in the country, particularly in the north, around Iraq’s second city Mosul.
Islamic State has claimed previous attacks against security forces and in public places in mainly Shi’ite dominated areas.
Earlier this month, the group claimed a deadly gun attack in Tarmiya, an area 25 km (15 miles) north of Baghdad.

 

Accidents

47 die, 180 injured in 52 accidents in Sokoto — FRSC

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47 die, 180 injured in 52 accidents in Sokoto — FRSC

No fewer than 47 persons died, while 180 sustained injuries in 52 different road crash that occurred from May to October in Sokoto state.

Mr. Kabiru Yusuf-Nadabo, the Sokoto State Sector Commander of Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) disclosed this at the 2022 accident victims remembrance day on Friday in Sokoto.

Yusuf-Nadabo said out of the road crashes, 23 were fatal while 25 were serious that involved 78 different categories of vehicles.

He said that the event was part of Africa Road Safety/World Road Safety awareness initiative to awaken people on the rising cases of road accidents that cause loss of lives, as well as properties.

According to him, FRSC was established to curb the menace and to create a safe motoring environment for all Nigerians, adding that FRSC has been making remarkable efforts on reducing road traffic accidents.

”The event was set to commemorate road traffic accidents victims and equally sensitise the Nigerian public on the dangers, consequences of accidents and proper usage of roads.

”Based on the statistics presented and life experiences from some survivors of traffic accident victims, ” Yusuf-Nadabo said.

He urged motorists to abide by regulations and abstain from dangerous driving, overspending and overloading to ensure accident-free and safer roads.

 Prayers were offered in both Islamic and Christian ways.

In the same vein, two traffic accident survivors, Malam Kabiru Bello and Malam Hassan Garba, recounted their ordeals during and after the crashes they were involved in.

The event witnessed presentations from the state Vehicles Investigation Office (VIO), Special Marshals, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO).

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Accidents

Onitsha Fire explosion: 80 shops destroyed, Police yet to know casualty rate

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Onitsha Fire explosion: 80 shops destroyed, Police yet to know casualty rate

The Fire Chief of Anambra Fire Services, Mr. Martin Agbili, has said that 80 shops were affected in the chemical market fire explosion at Onitsha Head Bridge.

This is contained in a statement signed by Agbili on Wednesday in Onitsha.

He said that incident took place at the Science and Lab Line of Ogbo Ogwu Market not the entire Ogbo Ogwu Market, Onitsha.

”It is really a terrible situation but the fire is under control now. The vibration from the explosions caused the collapse of some market buildings.

“A lot of safety measures have been taken to protect the entire market. There are casualties but we can’t ascertain the actual number of death and the injured”, he said.

The fire also destroyed goods and properties worth millions of naira.

In a related development, the Police Public Relations Officer, Anambra Command, DSP Tochukwu Ikenga,  says the police were yet to be furnished with the casualty rate at the fire explosion in the chemical market in Onitsha.

Ikenga stated this on Tuesday, in Onitsha while reacting to a fire explosion that rocked the chemical market.

According to him, I don’t have the information on the level of casualty and the level of damage.

“But I can confirm to you that there was a fire explosion at the chemical market and our operatives led by DCP Operations, John Ogbodaga is on ground.

“The area has been cordoned off, the fire service was also on ground and the situation is under control,” he said.

It was earlier reported that no fewer than four persons were reportedly confirmed dead and about 20 sustained various degrees of injuries.

On his part, the state Fire Chief, Anambra Fire Service, Mr. Martin Agbili, said that he and other relevant stakeholders were currently on the scene of the incident at the time of filing this report and useful information would be given in due time.

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Accidents

3 die, on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway – FRSC

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47 die, 180 injured in 52 accidents in Sokoto — FRSC

Three persons died and three others were severely injured in a lone road accident on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.

Mr. Ahmed Umar, the Sector Commander of the FRSC in Ogun, confirmed this to newsmen on Monday in Abeokuta.

Umar explained that the accident occurred in the early hours of Monday and involved a Toyota Sienna with registration number DKP 60 LG.

He added that it occurred just before the first AP turning point after Danco filling station on the expressway.

He attributed the crash to speeding that led to loss of control by the driver.

The FRSC boss stated that six people, comprising four males and two females were in the vehicle.

”A total of three people were injured, two male adult and one female adult and unfortunately three persons lost their lives in the accident,” he said.

Umar noted that the injured victims were currently receiving treatment at Idera Hospital, while the dead bodies were deposited at the morgue of same hospital.

The sector commander commiserated with the crash victims and advised motorists to shun speeding, particularly during these ember months.

 

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