Just days after heated arguments in the Chambers of the House of Representatives over a proposition to make Liberia a ‘Christian State’, Liberian Muslims have said that they will not resort to any form of violence in their opposition to Christian groups that are seeking for the country to be declared a ‘Christian State’. The Chief Imam of Liberia, Alhaji Muhammad Abdullah Sheriff, said Liberian Muslims have remained peaceful and have promoted coexistence since the formative days of the state.To amend the 1986 Constitution, Liberians are expected to go to a referendum to adopt several proposals, including the controversial proposal to make Liberia a ‘Christian State’, which Liberian Muslims have objected to, fearing that they will be declared second class citizens.Imam Sheriff told his audience, which with the exception of Imams who have converged from the 15 counties and other members of the Muslim community also included stakeholders from the security sector, other religious leaders and the office of the National Peace Ambassador of Liberia, at the Unity Mosque in Fish Market, in Monrovia, that Liberian Muslims have resolved to be ambassadors of peace and will continue to say no to violence.He said Liberian Muslims are aware of ‘some unscrupulous’ people in the global Muslim community who continue to make their religion look bad in the eyes of the rest of the world. “Their actions clearly contradict the Qur’an. As for us (Liberian Muslims) we will continue to be agents of peace,” he said.He added that the NICL will continue to work for the propagation of ‘true Islam’ in the interest of all humanity. “We have resolved to be peaceful, and will remain peaceful forever and ever,” he said, adding that the Imams must lead this endeavor.Conflicting StanceHowever, the conference hall of the Unity Mosque went silent for moments when Sheikh Ali Krayee, Deputy Chief Imam for National Affairs, in a strong tone said Liberian Muslims will not allow themselves to be reduced to second class citizens in their own country, with clear reference to the proponents of the ‘Christian State’ proposition.He said those who are pushing for Liberia to become a ‘Christian State’ are themselves enemies of the state. “They are creating a time bomb that can explode where no one will escape. No group of people will accept to be considered second class in their land of birth,” he said, although proponents of the ‘Christian State’ agenda have refuted claims that they would reduce Liberian Muslims to second class citizens. Imam Krayee, who is Krahn by tribe, described Liberian Muslims as peaceful but promised not to bow to any decision that will reduce them to second class in their own nation though he did not explain what is involved in his promise. Serving as the guest speaker at the event, the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) Force Commander, General Saleh Zuhair Uba, said there is a need for Liberians to unite in order to maintain the hard-earned peace that the country currently enjoys. He said UNMIL will continue to support all who want to see peace in Liberia, because this is the only way the society will strive. He told the NICL that they have chosen the right path, which is in the interest of Liberia.Other dignitaries who graced the occasion were representatives from the embassies of Sierra Leone, Nigeria and the United States of America, as well as some organs of the UN. Also present was the National Peace Ambassador of Liberia, Rev. William R. Tolbert III.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Mumbai, May 14 (PTI) All set to spearhead Indias campaign in the upcoming Sudirman Cup world mixed team badminton championships slated to be held in Australia, ace shuttler P V Sindhu is confident of a good show by the team.”I think we have a good chance, its a mixed team event so girls and boys both have to perform well. We are playing Indonesia and Denmark, so I hope we can win,” Sindhu said here last night after being conferred with the honorary life membership of the Cricket Club India.India, ranked no. 9, is placed in Group 1D with Denmark and Indonesia in the preliminary stage of the competition, scheduled from May 21-28. The team had finished 9th in the previous edition of the championships.India will depend a lot on the world no. 4-ranked Rio Olympic Games silver medallist in the event, from which another top woman shuttler and London Games bronze medal winner Saina Nehwal has pulled out due to family reasons.Since only one woman could play as its a mixed team event, Sindhu said Sainas absence should not be an issue.”Yes, Saina isnt playing, but when it comes to one singles and doubles only one player is required, so that shouldnt be any issue,” said the 21-year-old shuttler after having interacted with the CCI badminton-playing children at the clubs courts earlier.Sindhu has slipped down from the world no. 2 ranking she achieved after winning the Indian Open, and is eager to move up the ladder.advertisement”Currently Im on fourth (rank) and I expect to see myself in top three by the end of the year.”But I have already been in top two so I would definitely like to see myself as world number one, but before that I think you have to play well and if you do that ranking will automatically come,” she said.On current no.1 Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese-Taipei whom she had beaten on way to the silver medal in Rio, Sindhu said, “We havent played much recently. The last was Rio and All England. So I havent faced her recently.””But she is winning a lot of matches and doing well for herself. But when it comes to me playing against her, I feel its going to be a good match,” she said.Asked about the high points for her after winning the silver in Rio, the lanky shuttler said, “Winning China Open and Indian Open. I had always wanted to win a Super Series (event) and by fulfilling that I feel very happy and it gives me a lot of confidence.””After the Olympics Ive seen a lot of change, kids picking up badminton and also then a lot of academies have come up.”So, its a good sign and badminton as a sport is getting much more encouragement,” she said when asked about the changes she had seen in the shuttle game after her historic silver medal winning effort at Rio.Earlier during her interaction with the younger lot of club players, Sindhu evoked admiration when she said that she trained daily for 7-8 hours.She also said that players can learn a lot after losing a game by thinking back to the match and pinning down the errors they had made.”When I lose a point I dont think about it (at that stage) as thinking over it would make you lose the next 2-3 points,” Sindhu said. PTI SSR GK JMF
The Walmart sweatsuit worn by Kristin Bauer on the first episode of True Blood’s fifth season is going under the hammer to help finance the documentary Out for Africa that Kristin and her husband Abri van Straten will shoot in Kenya this summer.Kristin Bauer’s SweatsuitThe actress has been asking fans for donations to help fund a new documentary that looks into the poaching and slaughter of Africa’s majestic animals. She has already raised $64,000, and is hoping the sale of the piece of True Blood’s wardrobe will raise even more.“This year my husband Abri van Straten and I are going to Kenya with a camera crew to see majestic Elephant families and Rhino in their natural habitat and to meet with the real heroes who work tirelessly for the African wildlife to shine a light on the crisis facing Elephants and Rhino due to rampant poaching for the ivory and horn trades to supply the growing Asian market,” she said.Upcoming items for auction are a Sookie modesty patch and bra signed by Anna Paquin and a one of a kind, Authority necklace from the True Blood Costume Department.The sweatsuit is up for auction on eBay until August 30 – you can access the auction here.To find out more about Kristin’s documentary project, click here.