Mus­lim woman mis­taken for ter­ror­ist sues

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide -

CHICAGO — A young Mus­lim woman on Thurs­day sued Chicago po­lice who mis­tak­enly iden­ti­fied her briefly as a po­ten­tial “lone wolf” ter­ror­ist as she was leav­ing a city sub­way sta­tion last year on the Fourth of July wear­ing a head­scarf, face veil and car­ry­ing a back­pack.

Itemid Al-Matar says of­fi­cers vi­o­lated her civil rights by pulling off her re­li­gious garb as they ar­rested her on sub­way sta­tion stairs, then strip-searched her later at a po­lice sta­tion, ac­cord­ing to the fed­eral law­suit filed in Chicago on her be­half.

“Sev­eral [of­fi­cers] ran up the stairs and grabbed the Plain­tiff and threw her down upon the stair land­ing, then pulling at her and rip­ping off her hi­jab,” it says.

Se­cu­rity-cam­era video made pub­lic shows sev­eral min­utes of the ar­rest in the sub­way. Sev­eral of­fi­cers can be seen push­ing through a crowd on a stair­way to reach Al-Matar, but soon move out of view of the cam­era.

The fact that Al-Matar was wear­ing a head­scarf, known as a hi­jab, and the face veil, called a niqab, “was the im­pe­tus be­hind the ac­tions” of the of­fi­cers, the court fil­ing al­leges. In a state­ment on Thurs­day, Phil Robert­son, a lawyer for the Chicago chap­ter of the Coun­cil on Amer­i­can-Is­lamic Re­la­tions, or CAIR, and a co-coun­sel in the civil case, ar­gued that “bla­tant xeno­pho­bia, Is­lam­o­pho­bia, and racial pro­fil­ing” un­der­pinned the of­fi­cers’ ac­tions.

A po­lice re­port filed the night of the in­ci­dent says of­fi­cers had been “on high alert of ter­ror­ist ac­tiv­ity” on the Fourth of July hol­i­day when they spot­ted Al-Matar ex­hibit­ing what they be­lieved was “sus­pi­cious be­hav­iour,” in­clud­ing walk­ing at “a brisk pace, in a de­ter­mined man­ner.” It also says of­fi­cers saw what they thought could be “in­cen­di­ary de­vices” around her an­kles and were also sus­pi­cious of her back­pack, which was clutched to her ch­est. “[Of­fi­cers] be­lieved that sub­ject might be a lone wolf sui­cide bomber and de­cided to at­tempt to take sub­ject into cus­tody,” it says.

A K-9 unit searched for ex­plo­sive ma­te­ri­als, the re­port says, “with neg­a­tive re­sults,” while “the objects strapped around ar­restee’s an­kles” turned out to be “an­kle weights.” But Al-Matar was still charged, in­clud­ing with ob­struct­ing jus­tice af­ter po­lice ac­cused her of re­sist­ing and re­fus­ing to com­ply with or­ders. She was ac­quit­ted on all charges at a state trial ear­lier this year.

Thurs­day’s law­suit names six of­fi­cers and the city of Chicago as de­fen­dants, ac­cus­ing them of ex­ces­sive force, false ar­rest, vi­o­la­tion of free­dom of re­li­gious ex­pres­sion and ma­li­cious pros­e­cu­tion. — AFP LILONGWE — A Malaw­ian man has been slapped with a twoand-a-half year jail sen­tence af­ter it was found that he had slept with his own daugh­ter in a bid to “cure” her of her epilepsy.

Ac­cord­ing to a Malawi24 re­port, 47-year-old White Taimu is al­leged to have had sex­ual in­ter­course with his 20-year-old daugh­ter due to a be­lief that it would rid her of her ail­ment.

The in­ci­dent, which took place in Malawi’s Man­gochi District, saw the young woman fell preg­nant as a re­sult of her fa­ther’s in­ces­tu­ous ac­tions. While pass­ing judg­ment on the man, Mag­is­trate Ron­ald Mb­wana stated that such acts could not be con­doned in the south­ern African na­tion.

Po­lice have since urged mem­bers of the pub­lic to come for­ward with any in­for­ma­tion per­tain­ing to sex crimes in their ar­eas so as to curb the scourge of sex­ual mis­con­duct cur­rently plagu­ing the state.

The de­vel­op­ment fol­lows just two weeks af­ter the ar­rest of a 38-year-old man in Sal­ima District for the al­leged rape of his KAMPALA — Ugan­dan of­fi­cials raided a pres­ti­gious pri­vate school on Thurs­day to seize copies of Bri­tish chil­dren’s author Jac­que­line Wil­son’s Love Lessons on the or­ders of a min­is­ter who has led sev­eral crack­downs on “ob­scene” con­duct.

Min­is­ter for ethics and in­tegrity Si­mon Lokodo said the book ex­posed chil­dren at­tend­ing the ex­clu­sive Green­hill Academy to sex at too young an age.

The school in the cap­i­tal Kampala is pop­u­lar with Uganda’s elite and Western ex­pa­tri­ates, and ad­mits pupils be­tween five and 12 years old. “My team went to the school and con­fis­cated the books from the li­brary and we have opened in­ves­ti­ga­tions into their mo­tive,” Lokodo said.

“The books con­tained lit­er­a­ture on sex and th­ese books are not suit­able for pri­mary pupils,” he added.

Love Lessons tells the story of 14-year-old Pru­dence, who 8-year-old daugh­ter, a Nyasa Times re­port said. The sus­pect, Mas­ton Khon­goza, is re­ported to have raped his daugh­ter on two oc­ca­sions while her mother was re­ceiv­ing treat­ment for malaria.

Khon­goza is ex­pected to ap­pear in court soon to an­swer on charges of in­cest.

Pres­i­dent Peter Mutharika re­cently an­nounced the in­tro­duc­tion of tougher leg­is­la­tion against sex of­fend­ers, in a crack­down on sex crimes in the coun­try.

Speak­ing dur­ing an in­ter­view with the BBC, Mutharika claimed that his govern­ment would be tak­ing strong ac­tion against so-called “hye­nas” — sex­ual preda­tors who are paid to have sex with young girls as part of a “cleans­ing” prac­tice.

“I have in­structed the Min­is­ter of Jus­tice to start prepar­ing a draft pa­per which will form a base of legis­taion which will be pre­sented be­fore the cab­i­net, and then we will have new leg­is­la­tion gov­ern­ing some of th­ese [cul­tural] prac­tices,” said Mutharika. — AFP

‘Ob­scene’ Bri­tish chil­dren’s book seized from Uganda school

es­capes the mis­ery of life at home with a con­trol­ling fa­ther by fall­ing in love with her hand­some art teacher.

At cer­tain points she shares kisses with the teacher, but there is no ex­plicit sex­ual con­tent in the novel, which is aimed at young teenagers.Green­hill Academy man­age­ment re­fused to com­ment on the raid.Lokodo has be­come no­to­ri­ous in Uganda for his fight against ho­mo­sex­u­al­ity and any­thing he deems provoca­tive.

A gay pride pa­rade in Kampala planned for last week­end was post­poned af­ter the min­is­ter was ac­cused of say­ing mob at­tacks on par­tic­i­pants would be their own fault.

He also had Ugan­dan pop star Jemimah Kan­si­ime ar­rested last year for per­form­ing in a mu­sic video he deemed “very ob­scene and vul­gar” as part of an anti-pornog­ra­phy cam­paign.

Lokodo also or­dered po­lice to ar­rest men who pro­cure pros­ti­tutes and de­scribed a pop­u­lar lo­cal tele­vi­sion dat­ing show as pros­ti­tu­tion. — AFP

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