The Queensland Muslim Historical Society received a donation of primary source material from the family of the late Mohedeen (Bob) Howsan after the death of his sister Ayesha Muriel Howsan.
Included in these documents were papers relating to his airforce career, correspondence advising his parents of his heroic death, personal effects, final pay details, his will, burial details and articles written about his career and sacrifice.
The Society decided to donate the original material to the John Oxley library which will preserve and catalogue the documents and make them available to researchers and the general public.
Mohedeen Abdul Ghias Howsan (known as Bob) was in the Royal Australian Air Force during the Second World War and gave his life in the service of his country. He saved a village in France from being hit by his burning plane and was himself incinerated in the crash on 1st April, 1942. The village in France has erected a memorial to him and his crew for their heroic sacrifice.
He was the grandson of two of the first Muslim families to settle in Mt Gravatt, namely Abdul Ghias Kaus and Mohammed Howsan.
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Genital Mutilation (FGM) has been banned in
the UK for thirty years but a new campaign,
spearheaded by a young Somali teenager, 17
year old Fahma Mohamed, seeks to bring the
issue much more into the forefront of
peoples’ consciousness in order to prevent
its alleged wide-scale continuance.
The practice, which involves the partial or
total removal of external female genitalia
for non-medical but traditional and cultural
reasons, pre-dates the spread of Islam. The
“operation”’ – which is a formal medical
procedure in some countries eg Egypt, but
little more than “a brutal cutting”’ in many
other countries where it is practised – is
not only immediately dangerous if it is done
in rudimentary settings by traditional
“cutters,” but can have devastating future
consequences for the victims. For instance,
when carried out by tribal cutters, as
featured, for example, in a Guardian Online
video about Kenyan “cutters”, girls can die
of blood loss or infection. The pain and
distress can be devastating. It can also
leave permanent physical and psychological
damage which affects women’s general and
sexual health as well as their fertility.
In addition, intimate relations, for
instance, can become difficult or impossible
for some women; the right Islam gives women
to enjoy the marital relation can be
dreadfully impeded and not only is fertility
affected, but child-bearing and giving birth
can be life-threatening.
Its prevalence in both Muslim majority and
minority countries including: Somalia (98%),
Egypt (91%), Mali (89%), Ethiopia (74%),
Guinea-Bissau (50%) and Nigeria (27%),
(figures according to UNICEF), makes it an
important Muslim and humanitarian public
health issue. And not just for international
campaigners. According to the British
Government, more than 20,000 British girls
may be at risk of having this procedure done
to them – both abroad where they may be
taken for so-called “cutting holidays” or in
The Halal Authority Board (HAB) has
signed a motion stating that machine-killed
poultry is haram (forbidden) and
unacceptable to UK Muslims.
The decision, since no certifiers will
accept machine slaughter, will mean that 1.8
million machine-killed poultry will be taken
out of the halal supply chain each week.
The HAB adopted and signed the motion at a
conference on 22 February, attended by
representatives from halal certification
bodies, businesses, Muslim organisations and
It was explained that, under Islamic law,
mechanical slaughter is haram, as per a
consenus already signed by the HAB in June
2012. The conference played a video showing
poultry being killed by machine with no
pronouncement of Allah’s name. It showed
only a sign stating ‘halal’ along with
Allah’s name. This, according to HAB,
depicted the deception and fraud that can
and does occur in machine slaughter.
The signed statement reads: “We, the
undersigned, formally declare that the
slaughter of animals by mechanical means
(including sacred blade) is not permissible
and considered haram (forbidden) for
The declaration means there is now no
certification body that will certify
machine-slaughtered poultry as halal. This
effectively means that 40% of chickens
previously certified halal will no longer be
allowed to be labelled as such.
Religious Minister of Craven Arms Islamic
Centre, Imam Sohaib Peerbhai said: “The
Muslim community is united on the issue of
mechanical slaughter being un-Islamic and
fully supports this as not permissible for
Naved Syed, halal adviser to the Yorkshire
Association of Asian Businesses, said:
“There will be no ambiguous situation
regarding machine slaughter any more, as all
the certifiers have banned this practice.
“I expect some companies will try to get
round this by getting overseas halal
certifiers to approve machine slaughter.
Unfortunately this will not work as overseas
halal certifiers have no bearing on the UK
industry, and furthermore I expect the Food
Standards Agency and trading standards to
clamp down on this illegal act.”
In December 2013 The Halal Food Authority
(HFA) made a statement saying that it no
longer accepted mechanical slaughtering of
poultry. It said that poultry
slaughterhouses that employ a mechanical
fixed blade would no longer be accredited by
the HFA for halal status with effect from 3
Syed therefore believes that suppliers have
had enough time to prepare for a move to
hand-slaughter. He said: “Supplier have had
three months to get their affairs in order.
Everybody is aligned with this, the
certifiers are in agreement, the mosques are
in agreement and the FSA is in agreement.”
Facing growing calls for boycott over its
ban on halal slaughter, Denmark has
attempted to play down growing criticism by
Muslims around the world, confirming that
the Islamic slaughter is still legal in the
north Nordic European country.
“There is no ban on Islamic slaughter in
Denmark,” the Danish Embassy in Riyadh was
quoted by the Arab News on Monday, February
“Animal sacrifice according to Islamic
principles is still legal in Denmark.”
The controversy erupted earlier in February
when Agriculture and Food Minister Dan
Jørgensen announced that Jewish and Muslim
ritual slaughter will be illegal in Denmark.
Muslims all over the world have opposed
Denmark’s move to ban the slaughter of
animals in an Islamic (halal) way.
The increasing condemnations were followed
by calls by Muslims upon their governments
to stop importing Danish meat as long as the
Scandinavian country refuses to respect
their religious teachings.
Joining debates surrounding the issue,
Muslims asserted that halal way of
slaughtering animals has been scientifically
proved to be better for animals as well as
humans than killing them by electric shock.
“Muslim countries must stop importing meat
from Denmark as long as it prohibits Islamic
way of slaughtering animals,” Fouad Tawfik,
an Islamic scholar, said.
Dr. Zakir Naik, a respected propagator of
Islam, emphasized that Islamic way is
hygienic as it allows animal blood to be
“Blood is a good medium for germs, bacteria
and toxins that cause various diseases,” he
The concept of halal, -- meaning permissible
in Arabic -- has traditionally been applied
Muslims should only eat meat from livestock
slaughtered by a sharp knife from their
necks, and the name of Allah, the Arabic
word for God, must be mentioned.
Muslim scholars agree that Shari`ah provides
a divine law of mercy that should be applied
on all Allah’s creations, including animals.
Islam also provides details about avoiding
any unnecessary pain.
In a bid to calm Muslims’ criticism, the
Danish Embassy in Riyadh defended
“Unfortunately, the Danish government
executive order has been portrayed and
misinterpreted by the media, as if it was
directed against the halal form of
slaughter,” said Fikre El-Gourfti, deputy
chief of the Danish mission.
He claimed that the current procedure of
stunning an animal before slaughtering it
“is in accordance with the resolution of the
Islamic Fiqh Council of the Makkah-based
Muslim World League (MWL).
“It is important for the Danish government
that Muslims can buy halal meat in Denmark,”
Yet, Tawfik, the Muslim scholar, refuted the
embassy’s statement, saying stunning of
animals is not Islamic and MWL would not
approve of such a religious edict.
“It’s the right of Danish Muslims to get
halal food,” he said, advising Muslims to
move to eat chicken and fish until they get
Zaid Khan, a blogger, urged Saudi Arabia and
other Gulf countries to import halal meat
from Muslim countries such as Pakistan,
Turkey and Malaysia.
“The Danish decision should make us think in
a proactive manner.”
Denmark is home to a Muslim minority of
200,000, making three percent of the
country's 5.4 million population.
Q: Dear Kareema, I’m in my
first trimester of my pregnancy and a regular at
the gym. I’m enjoying my classes and was
wondering if there is any particular exercises I
can do instead of sit-ups / crunches?
A: Congratulations and good on you for
staying on track with your fitness routine. I
normally get my pregnant participants to do
their back strengthening or balance exercises
instead of ab work.
When the rest of the class go on
their backs to do ab work, try going on your
hands and knees and doing exercises like cat
stretches, or opposite arm and leg out (angling
to the side to strengthen your back), which in
turn will strengthen your stomach muscles anyway
and help carry the extra weight of the baby
later in pregnancy.
Hovers are good too (only if you
feel comfortable while doing them) and not when
you’re too far along in your pregnancy.
Try yoga as well for some
beautiful stretches and deep muscle work, but be
sure to check in with your doctor before doing
anything different or new.
Also make sure to let the
instructor know that you’re pregnant so they can
give you some options while working out.
Mula Nasruddin and his wife, Gulshen, had been married
for more than 60 years.
They had shared everything.
They had kept no secrets from each other except that
Gulshen had a shoe box in the top of her closet that she
had cautioned her husband never to open or ask her
For all of these years, he had never thought about the
box, but one day Gulshen got very sick and the doctor
said she would not recover. In trying to sort out their
affairs, the Mula Nasruddin took down the shoe box and
took it to his wife's bedside.
She agreed that it was time that he should know what was
in the box. When he opened it, he found two crocheted
dolls and a stack of money totaling $95,000. He asked
her about the contents.
"When we were to be married," she said, "my grandmother
told me the secret of a happy marriage was to never
argue. She told me that if I ever got angry with you, I
should just keep quiet and crochet a doll."
Mula Nasruddin was so moved; he had to fight back tears.
Only two beautifully crocheted dolls were in the box.
She had only been angry with him two times in all those
years of living and loving. He almost burst with
"Dear," he said "that explains the dolls, but what about
all of this money? Where did it come from?"
"Oh, that?" she said. "That's the money I made from
selling the dolls."
1. All Islamic Event dates given above are tentative and
subject to the sighting of the moon.
2. The Islamic date changes to the next day starting in
the evenings after maghrib. Therefore, exceptfor Lailatul Mehraj,
Lailatul Qadr – these dates refer to the commencement of the event starting in the
evening of the corresponding day.
The weekly program schedule is as follows:
The above lessons will start at 7:30 pm and will go for
approximately 1/2 an hour each day.
All brothers and sisters are welcome.
Queensland Police Service/Muslim Community
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