Atheist Republic News Summary: Iranian Female Rockclimber Competes Witho… P-admin Atheist Republic

Read More Atheist Republic Iranian Female Rockclimber Competes Without Hijab, Faces Retaliation
Location: Iran
Recently, an Iranian female professional rock climber, Elnaz Rekabi, publically competed in an international rock climbing event in Seoul, South Korea, without a hijab. The images of her climbing while her hair was flowing in a ponytail went viral. Her act was viewed as a sign of solidarity with the women of Iran and a rejection of clerical authority. Soon after she competed, she went missing, with her family unable to contact her. BBC’s Persian service confirmed that the Islamic regime confiscated the athlete’s phone and passport after she competed. There are other reports that she was lured into Iran’s embassy in Seoul, where she was then taken directly to the airport. When she arrived back in Iran, she received a hero’s welcome, as hundreds of people cheered her name outside of the airport, despite it being in the early hours of the morning. She was then taken directly to a gauntlet of meetings with various sports officials, and she allegedly apologized to Hamid Sajjadi, Iran’s sports minister. Sajjadi told reporters, Rekabi admitted to “forgetting” her hijab during the competition due to stress. He added, “She said she is ashamed.” Rekabi’s appearance followed Sajjadi’s statement in front of the press, where the athlete repeated what Sajjadi claimed, which was widely viewed as a forced confession. Rekabi made an Instagram post that said, “I apologize about what I did to make you worry.”
Indian Human Sacrifice Case Prompts Calls for Laws Against Superstition
Location: India
On October 11th, 3 individuals were arrested for their role in a “black magic” related human sacrifice ritual in the Indian state of Kerala. The police arrested three individuals related to this gruesome murder. The plan to murder these women was planned by Muhammed Shafi, a repeat offender. Shafi had convinced a couple, Bhagawal Singh and his wife Laila, that if they performed a human sacrifice ritual, a goddess would be “pleased” and bless them with good fortune, solving their financial difficulties. Shafi and the couple killed Rosly, 49 years old, in June and Padmam, 52, in September. Further investigation showed that Shafi has previous charges, including of rape, theft, and attempted murder. After Padmam’s family filed a missing person complaint, the murders were brought to light following a police investigation. Chairperson of the Kerala State Women’s Commission, P. Satheedevi, said, “It is so frightening to see that brutal acts, including human sacrifice, are taking place in a society like ours, which boasts of high educational standards.” Reports say these murders have garnered concern about the need for a law against black magic and harmful rituals performed in the name of “faith.”
“Jewish Taliban” Cult Members Escape Mexican Detainment Center
Location: Mexico
On the night of September 28, a group of twenty or more members from an extremist radical Jewish cult, Lev Tahor, also known as the “Jewish Taliban” or “Jihadi Jews” for their conservative dress that looks like burqas, escaped from a detention shelter in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas. This shelter served as a safe house to the members to protect the children from the abusive and high-control practices of the group. On September 23, the members of the sect were detained after some of the cult leaders were arrested for organized crime and human trafficking. After escaping the shelter, they boarded an awaiting truck outside and headed towards the Guatemala–Mexico border. Family members are concerned, as there are now numerous children back within the control of the group. According to the reports, the local police, national guard, and Mexico’s immigration agency refrained from pursuing them. This is not the first time the cult had to deal with legal issues. Last November, two leaders of the cult were detained for the charges of kidnapping and child sexual exploitation crimes in New York.
Mob of 200 Storms Mosque in Indian Village, Thrashes Worshippers Inside
Location: India
On October 12th, hundreds of Hindus forced their way into a mosque in Delhi, where Muslims were offering the Isha prayer (night prayer). According to a retired Army officer, Subedar Nazar Mohammad, who registered the complaint, the trouble began earlier in the day when about 200 people surrounded the mosque and threatened to expel the Muslims from the village. Later in the evening, the mob returned and assaulted people, including women, elders, and the Imam, and ransacked the mosque. Witnesses said that the Hindus locked the door while threatening them, and some had guns. The mob had fled by the time the police arrived. The night after the attack, village elders had apologized to the Muslims and the Muslims decided to let the matter drop and put the compromise in writing for the police department. The fight was allegedly started because ongoing renovations at the mosque prompted rumors that the mosque was illegally expanding.
Taliban Executed Gay Man, Then Sent Videotape of Murder to His Family
Location: Afghanistan
This summer, the Taliban executed Hamed Sabouri, a homosexual man from Kabul, and sent the video of the brutal killing to his mother, causing outrage in Afghanistan. A small LGBTQ+ activist group in Afghanistan, Behesht Collective, said that Taliban members kidnapped 22-year-old Hamed around August. Still, news of his death has only reached international media recently. Bahar, a member of the Behesht Collective and also a friend of Sabouri, said, “Sabouri was an ambitious yet shy young individual who had a dream to become a doctor before the Taliban came into power after the unexpected departure of the U.S. and combined forces in Afghanistan.” Nemat Sadat, an activist who helps homosexual men to cross the border to Pakistan, said, “the death of Hamed Sabouri is further proof that the Taliban will not stop until they eradicate all gay people from Afghanistan.” Since the 2021 Taliban offensive, the attacks upon the queer community have become more frequent. Last year a gay man using the pseudonym Gabir reported that the Taliban kidnapped and killed his boyfriend. After that, they returned his dismembered limbs and body parts as a warning. Another gay man was burned and tortured by the Taliban last year, now he is hiding for his safety.
4 People Accused of Witchcraft Forced to Eat Human Excrement in India
Location: India
In September, a woman in the Indian state of Jharkhand filed a complaint with the police alleging that she was tortured by villagers who accused her of witchcraft. On September 24th, the complainant and her husband were accused of witchcraft and beaten by villagers. The next day the perpetrators returned and attacked the couple along with two female members of the couple’s family. They were tied to a pole and beaten with a hot iron rod. The perpetrators then filled a bottle with human excrement and forced the victims to consume it. After the police were informed, police reports were registered against six people who had not been named. Two of the victims were treated at a community health center, while the other two were taken to a hospital due to severe injuries. According to data published this past February, at least one thousand people were murdered in Jharkhand on suspicion of witchcraft over the last twenty-two years, of which 90% were women. Police registered 4,556 cases of harassment due to witch accusations between 2015-2020, which amounts to two to three instances a day.
German Mosque Sounds 1st Public Call to Prayer Amid Protests by Ex-Muslims
Location: Germany
On October 14th, the Cologne Central Mosque in Germany, for the first time, sounded the adhan (Muslim call to prayer) using its two outside loudspeakers. The public call to prayer is the result of a controversial two-year trial deal made with authorities, in which the Friday call would last less than five minutes and at a noise level pre-authorized according to its location. Thirty-five other mosques in the city are also allowed to participate. Mayor Henriette Reker said, “If we also hear the call of the muezzin in our city alongside church bells, that shows that diversity is appreciated and lived in Cologne.” About twenty protesters showed up for the event holding signs across the street reading “No Muezzin call in Cologne!” and “Public space should be ideologically neutral!” Director of the Frankfurt Research Center on Global Islam, Susanne Schroeter, said that she worries that this could be seen as a win for Islamist hardliners.
Council of Islamic Ideology Throws Wrench in Pakistani Trans-Rights Bill
Location: Pakistan
On September 18th, Pakistan’s Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) stated that a law introduced in 2018 for transgender people, which allows them to be recognized as their gender without needing any confirmation from a medical board, is unsuitable by Islamic standards. The claim that the bill is unacceptable as per Islamic standards came from a Pakistani Senator, Mushtaq Ahmed, from the explicitly anti-LGTBQ+ Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) party. The 2018 Transgender Persons’ (Protection of Rights) bill was created to protect transgender people from discrimination. According to Mushtaq, permitting people to change their gender marker would become a “danger to the family and inheritance systems,” as the assets are divided based on gender by the Islamic system of inheritance. This would result in 220 million people being able to decide “whatever they want.” Nasreen Jalil, a member of the Senate of Pakistan and chair of the Senate Functional Committee on Human Rights, said “The transgender community is opposed to the idea of setting up a medical board that should determine their gender, fearing that they might be subjected to embarrassment and harassment.”
Louisiana High School Students Tricked into Attending Sick Religious Event
Location: Louisiana
Recently, high school students at the East Baton Rouge Parish School in a Louisiana school district were told they would attend a college and career fair but were surprised to arrive at a church. School administrators told students that they would attend a career fair called “Day of Hope.” Instead of meeting colleges and companies for a possible career, students were sent to a church called Living Faith Christian Center. The students were then segregated by male and female, disregarding an individual’s gender identity, and were forced to register to vote in order to receive the advertised free food. Brittney Bryant, a biology teacher who stayed with the students, said that ‘boys were instructed to go outside while the girls were left in the church for ‘girl talk.” Speakers at the event talked about rape, forgiving the perpetrators of assaults, suicide, prayer leadership, and many more dark, controversial topics. The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) criticized the school for tricking its students into undergoing a devastating experience. In response to the traumatizing event paid for by tax dollars, a group called “Day of Nope” is planning to seek legal action.
Atheist Republic’s Emergency Translation Project to Support Iranian Uprising!
Atheist Republic is absolutely thrilled to announce the beginning of an exciting and urgently needed project! During the initial days of the uprising in Iran, sparked by the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, many of our community members in Iran contacted our leadership asking for assistance on finding information on how to protect themselves from the deadly violence of the Iranian regime’s security forces. Unfortunately, many resources on safety and self-protection during protests are not available in the Persian language. So the Atheist Republic Persian community rose to the occasion and translated documents that include tips on how to treat tear gas, what to bring to a protest, how to treat bleeding, and much more! We have already released two translated manuscripts, designed for accessibility and easy distribution, and there are many more still in the works.