- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 18, 2006

IRAN

Police to strictly enforce dress codes

TEHRAN — Police announced yesterday that they will begin a crackdown on “social corruption,” such as women flouting Islamic dress codes, the semiofficial Fars News Agency reports. It quoted Tehran Police Chief Morteza Talaei as saying, “Police will seize women with tight coats and cropped trousers.”

Enforcement of strict codes governing women’s dress, Western music and mingling of the sexes became more lax after President Mohammed Khatami’s election in 1997 on a platform of social and political reform.

But hard-liners have been trying to reverse such concessions since President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was elected last year with the backing of conservative clerics and the Basij religious police. The Islamic dress codes imposed after Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution require women to cover their hair and wear long, loose-fitting clothes to disguise the shape of their bodies.

SAUDI ARABIA

Businessman flees to avoid whipping

RIYADH — A restaurant owner sentenced to 90 lashes by an Islamic court for employing two women in August 2004 has fled the country, the English-language Arab News reported yesterday.

Nabil al-Ramadan was quoted as saying by telephone from an undisclosed location that he chose to leave quickly because he feared that the swift ruling — announced by the court within 15 minutes of the start of the trial and in the absence of a lawyer — could mean a prompt punishment.

JORDAN

Failed bomber’s trial to begin next week

AMMAN — A failed female suicide bomber charged with killing 60 persons in three hotel bombings in Jordan goes on trial next week, the prosecutor’s office said yesterday.

Sajida al-Rishawi, 35, an Iraqi, will stand trial on April 24 in a state security court for the attacks on three Amman hotels on Nov. 9 by her husband and two other male Iraqi suicide bombers.

She has been charged with conspiracy to carry out terrorist acts, causing death and destruction, and illegal possession of weapons and explosives. She faces a death sentence if found guilty.

Weekly notes …

State-owned Egyptian newspaper Al-Gomhuria said yesterday that a suicide bombing that killed nine persons in Tel Aviv was a response to Israeli attacks on Palestinians, and that Palestinians should not abandon the struggle against Israel. But another state newspaper, Al-Ahram, said the Monday bombing, for which Islamic Jihad took responsibility, should be condemned as terrorism because it targeted civilians and damaged Palestinian interests. … French President Jacques Chirac heads to Egypt today for a two-day visit expected to be dominated by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and rising tensions over Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Traveling with an 80-member delegation, including top business leaders, Mr. Chirac’s trip to Egypt will be his first since 2002. He is expected to begin talks with President Hosni Mubarak on arrival this afternoon.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide