Culture Guest post Muslim world World

Terror against Christians in Nigeria

Guest post by Volker Seitz on the “World Persecution Index” 2024

Altar in Nigeria ©Rebecca Hillauer

Christians are persecuted for their faith in many countries. Every year, the “World Persecution Index” lists the 50 countries in which Christians are most at risk. The Index also describes what persecution and discrimination actually look like and how they affect people. Nigeria is once again in the top places. More here.

Muslim world Politics

Machos or pitiable weaklings?

What goes wrong in the traditional education of Muslim boys.

After the riots in New Year’s Eve 2022/23, the leader of the German Christian-Democratic Party, Friedrich Merz, called Muslim young men “little pashas”. He had to take a lot of flak for this. The recent hate-filled anti-Israel demonstrations show just how harmless Merz’s term was. I found a different comparison in a radio feature from 2007… The text makes the political failures of the last fifteen years clear once again.

Grilled poultry sausage ©Rebecca Hillauer
Muslim world Politics

“A disgrace to the Arabs”

A Yemeni-Swedish video blogger calls on his Arab sisters and brothers to be self-reflective.

“This a message to my Arab friends and followers who accuse me of being a ‘traitor,’ This is how Luai Ahmed begins one of his posts on X (formerly Twitter). With his views on Islam and Israel/Palestine, the video blogger holds up a mirror to other Muslim Arabs – and is widely hated for this.

Luai Ahmed on X ©Luai Ahmed
Muslim world Politics

Middle East: Looking back on my own experiences

With my personal experiences, my view of the Middle East conflict has also changed with the years.

I lived in Egypt for almost seven years and worked, among other things, for the Agency for Technical Cooperation (now: GIZ) as a consultant for the advancement of women. I condemn the terror of Hamas just as I condemn the migration policy of the German government, which ignores the Jew-hatred of Muslim migrants. And I also see Israel having its share of responsibility for the never-to-end conflict.

Once upon a time… El Arish, Sinai ©Rebecca Hillauer
Muslim world Portrait Women World

Civil rights activist, pastor and founder of a “widow’s village” in Nigeria

The amazing live story of Renate Ellmenreich

Renate Ellmenreich ©private

Although never a member of any youth organisation of the GDR, Renate Ellmenreich was allowed to graduate from high school as a so-called “worker’s and farmer’s child”. She studied theology and became a pastor but soon got into troubles with State Security. Then went to West Germany and as a development aid worker to Nigeria, where she founded a “widow’s village”. She supports a housing project for widows and their children in North Nigeria.

> radio portrait

Muslim world Women

Afghanistan: one year under the Taliban

Many women in Afghanistan continue to fight for their freedom – on the streets or underground.

Women and girls must wear burqas and are not allowed to attend school after the sixth grade or university. However, Samia Walid, who fled to Germany two years ago, tells that women’s rights activists would secretly run underground schools for girls.

> report, from 15 min 10 sec

Muslim world Politics Women

My hijab, my choice?

On World Hijab Day on February 1, the discussion boiled up again.

“Women for Freedom” (in German)

On “World Hijab Day”, non-Muslim women are invited to veil themselves in solidarity. Secular Muslims and women’s rights activists are mobilizing against this under the hashtags #NoHijabDay and #LetUsTalk. German public national television broadcasters are accused of promoting legalistic Islam with a music video on a youth channel.

Muslim world Women

To live self-determined

Fatma Keser explains why she turned her back on her Kurdish community.

Fatma Keser, daughter of Kurdish refugees, came to Germany with her parents as a child. She studied philosophy and comparative literature here. Together with two other female migrants, she founded the initiative “Women migrants for Secularity and Self-Determination”.

In a self-portrait, Fatma Keser describes how it came about.

Cosmo (RB, RBB, WDR), November 28, 2021

Culture Muslim world USA Women

Ani Zonneveld and the Muslims for Progressive Values

The Malaysian-American pop singer and imam connects secular Muslims worldwide

Ani Zonneveld ©private

Los Angeles-based Ani Zonneveld is a music producer, singer and imam, as well as the founder of an organization# that promotes progressive Islam. With the umbrella organization Alliance of Inclusive Muslims, which she also initiated, she is organizing a world’s first congress of secular Muslims in Kenya from November 17-19.

German Radio (Deutschlandfunk), November 11, 2021
Muslim world Politics Women

Women against Taliban

Women in Afghanistan are taking to the streets for their rights. They demand: no recognition and no money for the Taliban.

The situation in Afghanistan is particularly dramatic for women who have been able to work, study and have not worn a niqab. On the initiative of Iranian-born Mina Ahadi, activists want to build a global network against the new rulers in Kabul. And support the women on the ground in their resistance.

Austrian Radio ORF/Ö1, September 15, 2021