Armed attack targets Azerbaijan’s embassy in Iran
A guard has been killed in an armed attack on Azerbaijan’s embassy compound in Iran, the nation’s foreign ministry has said.
Two people were also wounded in Friday’s attack.
“The attacker destroyed the guard post with a Kalashnikov automatic weapon and killed the head of the security service. Two security guards of the embassy were also injured while preventing the attack,” Azerbaijan’s foreign ministry said.
The ministry said it would evacuate its embassy staff in Tehran.
The Iranian capital police chief, General Rahimi, said the attacker entered the embassy with his two children.
“Preliminary investigation shows that the attacker’s motive was personal and family problems,” Iran’s local Mehr News Agency reported.
‘Act of terrorism’
Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev said that an attack on his country’s embassy in Iran was “an act of terrorism” and demanded a swift investigation and punishment of the “terrorist”.
“I fiercely condemn the terrorist attack perpetrated against our Embassy in Tehran today,” Aliyev said on Twitter.
“We demand that this terrorist act be swiftly investigated and the terrorists punished,” he added.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has condemned the “treacherous attack” in a tweet.
“Azerbaijan is never alone,” Cavusoglu added.
Separately Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a statement regarding the deadly attack, saying that Türkiye which has been subjected to similar attacks in the past, deeply shares the pain of the Azerbaijani people.
“It is very important that those responsible for this heinous attack should be immediately apprehended and brought to justice,” the ministry said.
Nasser Kanani, the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iran also condemned the attack and said the suspect was detained.
“Police and security forces immediately intervened and arrested the assailant, who is currently under investigation,” the spokesman said.
The foreign ministry also noted that the situation is under investigation with dimensions of action and the motive of the assailant.
Azerbaijan borders Iran to its northwest. There have been tensions between the two countries as Azerbaijan and Armenia have fought over the Karabakh region.
Iran in October launched a military exercise near the Azerbaijan border, flexing its martial might amid the nationwide protests rocking the Islamic Republic.
Azerbaijan also maintains close ties to Israel, which Tehran views as one of its top regional enemies.
(Source: TRT WORLD)
Israeli PM sacks Defence Minister who urged a halt to judicial overhaul
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has fired Defence Minister Yoav Gallant after the latter called on the government to halt its contentious judiciary overhaul plan.
Netanyahu’s office issued a short statement late Sunday saying he decided to remove Gallant from his position, without citing any reasons, reports Xinhua news agency.
The move was largely seen as an indication that the Prime Minister’s coalition tries to push through key reform bills that are expected to be brought to parliamentary votes later this week.
Gallant responded in a tweet that Israel’s security “has always been and will always remain the mission of my life”.
Itamar Ben-Gvir, Israeli national security minister and a staunch supporter of the reforms, welcomed the dismissal of Gallant.
Opposition leader and Chairman of the centrist Yesh Atid party Yair Lapid criticised Netanyahu for firing Gallant, warning swift moves to overhaul judicial system are a threat to Israel’s security.
In a televised speech on Saturday, Gallant called for dialogue with opposition parties, and postponement of government efforts of pushing ahead with the plan until the Knesset reconvenes from its Passover holiday on April 30.
He was the first minister in Netanyahu’s far-right cabinet to break ranks and call for a freeze of the divisive plan to weaken the Supreme Court.
Gallant, a senior minister with Netanyahu’s Likud party, said that the overhaul plan has triggered turmoil in the Israeli society and military that poses a threat to national security.
Gallant was followed by two other Likud lawmakers and a minister, who issued similar calls to freeze the controversial plan.
The plan has sparked massive protests across Israel, and growing discontent in the Israeli military, with thousands of reservists with elite units, including combat pilots, intelligence officers, and cyber experts, announcing in open letters over the past weeks that they will not show up for duty if the reforms are passed in Parliament.
Netanyahu says the overhaul is needed in order to curb the “overly activist” Supreme Court.
Critics of the overhaul plan worry that the reform would undermine checks and balances within Israel’s political system, and that the Prime Minister, who is on trial for fraud, breach of trust, and accepting bribes, is in a conflict of interests.
Atif Aslam, wife Sara welcome baby girl in holy month of Ramzan
Pakistani playback singer Atif Aslam, who is known for chartbusters such as ‘Aadat’, ‘Bakhuda’, ‘Jeena Jeena’, ‘Jaane De’ and several others, has become a proud faher as he and his wife Sara Bharwana welcome a baby girl.
The ‘Tajdar-e-Haram’ hitmaker took to his Instagram on Thursday to share the news of his baby’s arrival with his fans. He posted a picture of his daughter wrapped up in pink colour baby sleepwear.
The baby is named Halima.
He wrote in the caption: “Finally the wait is over. The new queen of my heart has arrived.”
“Both baby and Sarah are fine Alhamdulilah. Please do remember us in your prayers. Ramadan Mubarak from Halima Atif Aslam 23/03/2023.”
He also added #Ramadan in the caption.
Atif has sung many songs in Bollywood films including ‘Tere Sang Yaara’ from ‘Rustom’, ‘Tu Jaane Na’ and ‘Tera Hone Laga Hoon’ from ‘Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani’ and ‘Tere Bin’ from ‘Bas Ek Pal’.
FIRST ROZA ON THURSDAY IN SAUDI ARABIA & JERUSALEM OR PALESTINE
JERUSALEM: The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine, Mohammad Hussein, declared that Thursday, March 23, will be the first day of the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan.
RIYADH: The crescent moon was not sighted on Tuesday evening in Saudi Arabia and Thursday, March 23, will be the start of the holy month of Ramadan, the Kingdom’s Supreme Court has said.
The court called on all Muslims in the Kingdom to look for the Ramadan crescent on Tuesday evening that corresponds to Shaban 29, 1444.
The Ministry of Justice announced it has launched an electronic system for crescent sighting “with the aim of automating and governing the moon sighting processes, and unifying work procedures between the courts of first instance and the Supreme Court.”
The service aims to unify the data source of the observatory through a robust electronic system that provides speed and integration with the relevant authorities, raising the quality of the observatory operations, and speeding up the issuance of the Supreme Court’s decision regarding new moon sightings.
More than 1.9 billion Muslims around the world will mark the holy month, during which believers abstain from eating, drinking and smoking from dawn until sunset.
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FIRST ROZA ON THURSDAY IN SAUDI ARABIA & JERUSALEM OR PALESTINE
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