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14 I ORLD NEWSW Passion Islam I September 2009
Obama pledges to resolve
issues with Muslim world
US President Barack Obama used an
annual Ramazan message to assure
the Muslims that his administration
had an ‘unyielding’ determination
to resolve the issues that plague
relations between the Muslim and
western worlds.
‘We are…committed to keeping
our responsibility to build a world
that is more peaceful and secure,’ he
said. ‘That is why we are responsibly
ending the war in Iraq. That is why we
are isolating violent extremists while
empowering the people in places like
Afghanistan and Pakistan.’
Mr Obama also assured the
Muslims that he and his government
were ‘unyielding in our support for a
two-state solution that recognises the
rights of Israelis and Palestinians to
live in peace and security’.
Mr Obama’s message was
very different from the terse and
brief Ramazan messages of his
predecessor which did not go want to reiterate my commitment to a governments, but directly to people in
much beyond formal felicitations new beginning between America and Muslim-majority countries, receiving
and the expression of a desire for Muslims around the world.’ ‘an outpouring of feedback’ about how
better relations between the two Mr Obama recalled that in a speech America could be a partner on behalf
civilisations. in Cairo on June 4, he had stressed of peoples’ aspirations.
In his first Ramazan message, the the need for a new beginning between Mr Obama said his administration
US president not only identified the the Muslim and western worlds. was also moving forward in partnering
real issues but also demonstrated a ‘This new beginning must be borne with the OIC and OIC member states to
better understanding of Islam and its out in a sustained effort to listen to eradicate polio, while working closely
rituals. each other, to learn from each other, with the international community to
All his efforts, he said, were a part to respect one another and to seek confront common health challenges
of America’s commitment to engage common ground,’ he said. ‘I believe like H1N1 which was of particular
Muslims and Muslim-majority nations an important part of this is listening.’ concern to many Muslims preparing
on the basis of mutual interest and He said that in the last two months, for the upcoming Haj.
mutual respect. American embassies around the
‘And at this time of renewal, I world had reached out not just to
CIA report: Detainees threatened with family rape
A newly declassified report released by Captured in 2002 over the USS appoint a special prosecutor, John
the US Justice Department says CIA Cole bombing two years earlier, Durham, to investigate allegations of
interrogators told terror suspect Abd Nashiri was held four years in a abuse of terror suspects, hours after
al-Rahim al-Nashiri that his mother secret CIA prison and became one of President Barack Obama set up a new
would be raped before his eyes if he three leading suspects to later suffer team of interrogators to question terror
refused to talk. waterboarding. suspects.
The inquisitors also told alleged The report on CIA interrogation Reports of the use of harsh
terror suspect Khalid Sheikh methods, written in 2004 by the interrogation techniques against terror
Mohammed and his children would be agency’s then inspector-general suspects could lead to the prosecution
killed, if the US were attacked again. John Helgerson, was kept secret until of CIA employees and officials who
In another instance, Nashiri was Monday, when it was released as part sanctioned such methods.
shown a gun and frightened into of a lawsuit brought by the American Assistant attorney John Durham
thinking he would be shot. He was also Civil Liberties Union. has already been conducting a probe
threatened with a power drill held near The revelations propelled the into the destruction of videotapes of
him and repeatedly turned on and off. US Attorney General Eric Holder to detainee interrogations by the CIA.
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