humanitarian aid

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Dear readers,

Welcome to the “Islam’s new Kartinis” series here on MarcGopin.com! As explained in my last post, this column will focus on Muslim women from around the world who work to bring positive incremental change to their communities and beyond. This month, we’re featuring Valerie Khan Yusufzai, chairperson of the Acid Survivors Foundation of Pakistan.

 

Valerie Khan Yusufzai speaks publicly about acid violence

Valerie Khan Yusufzai speaks publicly about acid violence

 Raquel: Have you always been interested in human rights work?

Valerie:  I grew up in a family where the ideas of freedom, thoughtfulness and fighting for what you believe is right were very much present. My great-grandparents resisted against the Germans in the First World War. My great-grandfather even received the Legion D’Honneur for excellent military conduct. This is the highest distinction for a French soldier. My grandfather, at age 19, joined the clandestine French forces to fight the Nazis during the Second …

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In Refugee Aid, Pakistan’s War Has a New Front
Jane Perlez

Refugees from the Swat Valley in Northwestern Pakistan

Refugees from the Swat Valley in Northwestern Pakistan

QASIM PULA, Pakistan — Islamist charities and the United States are competing for the allegiance of the two million people displaced by the fight against the Taliban in Swat and other parts of Pakistan — and so far, the Islamists are in the lead.

Although the United States is the largest contributor to a United Nations relief effort, Pakistani authorities have refused to allow American officials or planes to deliver the aid in the camps for displaced people. The Pakistanis do not want to be associated with their unpopular ally.

Meanwhile, in the absence of effective aid from the government, hard-line Islamist charities are using the refugee crisis to push their anti-Western agenda and to sour public opinion against the war and the United States.

“The Western organizations have spent millions

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Attack in Jerusalem

Attack in Jerusalem

Al Jazeera English interviewed me the other day on American intervention so far in Gaza. Here is the story:

The United States is set to pledge $900m for the Palestinians at a donors’ conference in Egypt, but only a third of that will go towards reconstruction in the Gaza Strip and none of the money will go to Hamas, who rule the territory.

Robert Wood, a spokesman for the US state department, said the US would pledge $300m at Monday’s conference on reconstructing Gaza, to meet “urgent” humanitarian needs in the territory after Israel’s military onslaught in December.

Wood said the $300m would be funnelled through the UN and other organisations.

“Hamas is not getting any of this money,” Wood told reporters in the Egyptian coastal resort of Sharm el-Sheik, where Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, arrived on Sunday on the first leg of a

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Gaza

Gaza

Read this important story about United States Representatives Keith Ellison and Dr. Brian Baird. In an American Congress that is utterly silenced about Palestinian needs and concerns, these two congressmen should be commended for going to Gaza. They will be punished by the Lobby and it is important for them to be supported. I hope that the Jewish alternative lobby, J Street , will do so. If there were a serious non-Jewish lobby for Palestine in Washington that really wanted to change things for Palestine it too would support every positive act coming out of Congress–with votes and cold hard cash. Alas, progressives don’t get it.

Here are excerpts written by veteran Post writer Tovah Lazaroff:

“When have lentil bombs been going off lately? Is someone going to kill you with a piece of macaroni?” asked Rep. Brian Baird (D-Washington).

He and Keith Ellison (D-Minnesota) called on Israel to

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