Coronavirus funerals: Sri Lanka’s Muslims decry forced cremation (BBC)

BBC: Coronavirus funerals: Sri Lanka’s Muslims decry forced cremation. “Sri Lankan authorities are insisting on cremation for coronavirus victims – a practice forbidden by Islam. The nation’s minority Muslim community says they are using the pandemic to discriminate, writes BBC Sinhala’s Saroj Pathirana.”

Jerusalem Post: National Library of Israel to open access to 2,500 rare Islamic books

Jerusalem Post: National Library of Israel to open access to 2,500 rare Islamic books. “The National Library of Israel, in coordination with the Arcadia Fund, has announced a major initiative to open digital access to over 2,500 rare Islamic manuscripts and books, according to a press release from library on Monday.”

Hyperallergic: Access Rare and Beautiful “Manuscripts of the Muslim World” via UPenn’s Digital Library

Hyperallergic: Access Rare and Beautiful “Manuscripts of the Muslim World” via UPenn’s Digital Library. “All materials on OPenn are in the public domain or released under Creative Commons licenses as Free Cultural Works. The MMW Project characterizes these materials as ‘mostly unresearched,’ perhaps encouraging a curious army of sequestered armchair historians to dig into this wealth more than 500 manuscripts and 827 paintings from the Islamicate world broadly construed.”

News & Observer: Drive-in prayers in Raleigh celebrate the end of Ramadan in the pandemic

News & Observer: Drive-in prayers in Raleigh celebrate the end of Ramadan in the pandemic. “In years past, the celebration had thousands of Muslims in the Triangle standing and sitting shoulder to shoulder. After praying, they exchanged hugs and handshakes with their well-wishes, and handed children candy. The usual celebration would have brought people too close together in the age of COVID-19. The Islamic Association of Raleigh decided to adapt the customary communal prayer so Muslims could still celebrate together, but do so safely.”

‘We’re ready if we are needed’: East London Mosque opens Covid-19 morgue (The Guardian)

The Guardian: ‘We’re ready if we are needed’: East London Mosque opens Covid-19 morgue. “The coffins contained the remains of two men of Moroccan descent who had died of coronavirus at St Mary’s hospital in Paddington. They had been brought to Whitechapel through the capital’s unusually quiet streets by Haji Taslim Funerals, London’s oldest Muslim funeral service, which is based at the mosque. In the spotless refrigerated room, the coffin lids were carefully removed to allow morgue attendants to perform a dry purification ritual, tayammum, using a special sandstone, on the shrouded bodies. The morgue has a section in which bodies can be washed with water in a more common ritual called ghusl, but the risk of contamination from Covid means tayammum is now being performed more often.”

Baumel Joseph: Preserving a lost grave through social media (Canadian Jewish News)

Canadian Jewish News: Baumel Joseph: Preserving a lost grave through social media. “Recently, Sass Peress experienced a “miracle.” He wanted to locate and preserve his paternal grandfather’s grave in Iraq. But, how could he? There was no way he or any member of his family could go back there. That world of their existence was closed, trampled upon and inaccessible. Or so he thought. Then, from a chance Facebook encounter, his efforts moved a vast anonymous community of Jews and Iraqi Muslims to preserve 4,000 Jewish graves. And the project is growing.”

CNN: More than 100 Uyghur graveyards demolished by Chinese authorities, satellite images show

CNN: More than 100 Uyghur graveyards demolished by Chinese authorities, satellite images show. “In a months’ long investigation, working with sources in the Uyghur community and analyzing hundreds of satellite images, CNN has found more than 100 cemeteries that have been destroyed, most in just the last two years. This reporting was backed up by dozens of official Chinese government notices announcing the ‘relocation’ of cemeteries.”

Revealed: Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib targeted in far-right fake news operation (The Guardian)

The Guardian: Revealed: Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib targeted in far-right fake news operation. “Two Muslim US congresswomen have been targeted by a vast international operation that exploits far-right pages on Facebook to inflame Islamophobia for profit, a Guardian investigation has found.”

Washington Post: Twitter fueled attacks on Muslim candidates in 2018, study finds

Washington Post: Twitter fueled attacks on Muslim candidates in 2018, study finds. “Muslim candidates, including Reps. Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib, endured torrents of hateful, xenophobic and threatening tweets during last year’s campaign season, much of it amplified through bots and other fake accounts, according to a study [that was] released Tuesday.”

TechCrunch: Facebook is failing to prevent another human rights tragedy playing out on its platform, report warns

TechCrunch: Facebook is failing to prevent another human rights tragedy playing out on its platform, report warns. “A report by campaign group Avaaz examining how Facebook’s platform is being used to spread hate speech in the Assam region of North East India suggests the company is once again failing to prevent its platform from being turned into a weapon to fuel ethnic violence.”

Al Monitor: Can Egypt’s newest search engine root out extremism?

Al Monitor: Can Egypt’s newest search engine root out extremism?. “Dar al-Ifta, Egypt’s Islamic authority with the power to issue fatwas (religious edicts), recently launched a search engine to track fatwas from terrorist groups and extremists and to help Al-Azhar scholars tackle Islamophobia. The data collected will enable clerics to develop indicators to help decision-makers better understand terrorist networks and guide policymakers in formulating effective counterterrorism strategies.”

University of Toronto: Institute of Islamic Studies captures stories and data to change the conversation on Muslims in Canada

University of Toronto: Institute of Islamic Studies captures stories and data to change the conversation on Muslims in Canada. “The IIS is spearheading a number of digital humanities projects to collect Muslim stories, combat Islamophobic ideas and partner with various organizations to better understand and represent the demographics and lived experiences of Muslims across Canada.”

British Library Medieval Manuscripts Blog: Discovering Sacred Texts launch

British Library Medieval Manuscripts Blog: Discovering Sacred Texts launch. “This week the British Library has launched its latest online learning resource, Discovering Sacred Texts, which invites visitors to explore the world’s major faiths through the Library’s extensive collections. The new website includes over 250 digitised collection items, teachers’ resources, short films and articles. Nine faiths are featured: Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism, the Baha’i Faith and Zoroastrianism.”

Donald Trump’s Tweets Are Influencing Anti-Muslim Sentiments: Study (The Wire)

The Wire: Donald Trump’s Tweets Are Influencing Anti-Muslim Sentiments: Study. “Over 27 years, the number of hate crimes, predominantly in the form of vandalism, against Muslims in the US reportedly increased in areas with higher social media usage and with pre-existing hate groups and Republican majorities. A potential driver of these anti-Muslim sentiments: Donald Trump’s Twitter feed.”

Islamic Painted Page: Growing a Database (Asian and African Studies Blog)

New-to-me and recently updated, from the Asian and African Studies Blog: Islamic Painted Page: Growing a Database. “Since its launch in 2013, Islamic Painted Page (IPP) has grown into a major online database of Islamicate arts of the book, with over 42,000 references to paintings, illuminations and bindings from over 270 collections around the globe – of which the British Library is one of the most important…. The website enables users to search by picture description, collection, accession number, date, place of origin, manuscript title or author, or publication – or any combination of these.”