March 18, 2005

March 18, 2005

March 18, 2005

* Woman Imam in NYC: Amina Wadud, an African American Muslim, and a professor of Islamic studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, led a congregation of about 60 women and 40 men in the weekly Muslim Friday, or Jumu'uah, prayer, despite the disapproval of mainstream Muslim scholars. [ (CNN)] [ (BBC)]
* Israeli-Palestinian conflict:
** In Tel Aviv, 10,000 people rallied to support Israel's unilateral disengagement plan of 2004 and support Ariel Sharon's plan to leave the Gaza Strip now. [ (Haaretz)] , [,7340,L-3060422,00.html (Ynet)]
** Member of Knesset Effi Eitam, announced he will move to settle in Gush Katif. This is despite a restriction order on relocating in the Gaza Strip issued by the Chief of the Southern Command. The Knesset chairman Reuven Rivlin said MK immunity covers Eitam's act. [ (Haaretz)]
* South Koreans stand outside the Japanese embassy in Seoul, protesting over the disputed islands, the Liancourt Rocks [ (CNN)]
* The government of Ukraine admits that 18 Kh-55 Granat nuclear-capable cruise missiles (without warheads) were smuggled to Iran and China by arms dealers. [ (BBC)]
* In the Netherlands, businessman Frans van Anraat is put on trial for allegedly selling chemicals to Saddam Hussein to make poison gas. He is accused of complicity to commit war crimes and genocide. [ (Reuters)] [ (BBC)]
* USA denies diplomatic visa to Indian politician Narendra Modi, chief minister of Gujarat [ (times of India)] [ (NDTV)] [ (BBC)]
* In the Solomon Islands, militia leader Harold Keke and two others receive a life sentence for murdering Augustine Geve [ (Solomon Star)] [ (Reuters)] [ (BBC)]
* The United Nations fires one employee and suspends six others without pay for allegations of sexual abuse in the Democratic Republic of Congo. [ (Reuters AlertNet)] [ (UN News Centre)]
* The SMTH BBS, the most popular newsgroup-like Bulletin Board System among Chinese university students and graduates, is forced by the PRC government to shut down off-campus access. [ (Washington Times)]
* Private Johnson Beharry of the British Army becomes the first person to receive the Victoria Cross since 1982 and the first living recipient since 1969. [ (Reuters)]
* The hit Disney Channel original sitcom, The Suite Life of Zack and Cody premiered at 7:00 p.m. EST. The show quickly rose to the second highest rated show on Disney.

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