April 2007

Apr 2  Mexico City officials have been ordered to ride a bicycle to work once a month. Those who cannot must ride public transit instead. 

Apr 5  Uganda's Constitutional Court ends the country's law against adultery because it is unfair to women. The law allowed married men to have affairs but not women.

Apr 7  In Yemen water is scarce. Forty percent of irrigation water is going to growing the drug khat, widely used by Yemenis, with farmers receiving 20 times the return they would growing potatoes. Yemen is predominately Muslim, one of the poorest countries in the world and importing most of its food. Khat gives people who chew it a mild euphoria.

Apr 7  In the city of Parachinar, Pakistan, Sunni and Shia attack each other. Forty are killed and more than 70 injured. Parachinar authorities put the city under a curfew.

Apr 9  The New York Times editorializes: "... there is little sign that the Baghdad push is accomplishing its main purpose: to create an island of stability in which Sunni Arabs, Shiite Arabs and Kurds can try to figure out how to run the country together. There has been no visible move toward compromise on the main dividing issues, like regional autonomy and more power sharing between Shiites and Sunnis."

Apr 12  In Iraq's Green Zone a suicide bomber kills a member of parliament and wounds two dozen others. The group taking credit is reported to be an alliance of Sunni insurgents. They see those in government siding with foreign occupying forces as traitors.

Apr 15  Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr announces that his cabinet members will leave the government in protest over the government's failure to support a timetable for a US military withdrawal. Sadr has had six ministers serving in the Iraqi government. 

Apr 15  Tens of thousands of Muslims rally in Karachi Pakistan in support of President Mursharraf and against extremism. A march leader says to the crowd that "Islam is a religion of peace."

Apr 16 Contrary to the claim above about Islam being a "religion of peace," in the United States Imam Fouad ElBayly, president of the Johnstown Islamic Center, objects to Ayaan Hirsi Ali's appearance in a debate on religious freedom at the University of Pittsburgh. He says:

She has been identified as one who has defamed the faith. If you come into the faith, you must abide by the laws, and when you decide to defame it deliberately, the sentence is death.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali is the former Dutch parliamentarian originally from Somalia. Islamic leaders in the area, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review dislike Ali's challenge to their belief system. The Tribune Review describes the Islamic leaders as having "complained that Hirsi Ali's attacks against the Muslim faith in her book [Infidel] are 'poisonous and unjustified' and create dissension in their community."

Apr 16  In Iraq, a professor of art history, Jaafar Hassan Sadeq, is murdered in front of his house. Academics are a target of choice of those opposed to liberal teaching. Many hundreds have been killed or have fled the country.

Apr 18  In Eastern Turkey, three Christians employees of a publishing house that distributes Holy Bibles are attacked by five young men who slit their throat. Among the five is a note that states that they expect to die.

Apr 18  In Baghdad, 180 are killed by car bombs aimed at Shia .

Apr 19  Prime Minister Maliki blames yesterday's bombings on "infidels and Sunni extremist vampires." He orders the arrest of the Iraqi army commander in charge of security in the bombed areas.

Apr 20  In Iraq, US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates meets Prime Minister Maliki and urges faster "political reconciliation."

Nini Wacera

Kenya's Nini Wacera

Apr 23  Nigeria's government fails to demonstrate fairness in elections, which would have helped stave off the country's drift into separatism and civil war. Umaru Yar'adua, the candidate for the governing party, the People's Democratic Party, won 70 percent of the vote to 18 percent for his strongest rival. All but the winners are condemning what is being described as a fraud.

Apr 25  On the Daily Show, Senator John McCain and Jon Stewart debate Iraq. Stewart asks whether we can get away from the language of win or lose, and he says that deadlines are "not surrender to an enemy that has defeated us." He adds that al Qaeda wants to attack us anyway, "whether we are in Iraq or not." McCain says that a timetable is surrender, the war has been mismanaged, "we are where we are," we should support the new strategy of a "great general," and that the vast majority of our troops believe they are "fighting for freedom." The audience cheers Stewart.

Apr 26 The Kenyan actress, Nini Wacera, stars in a new Kenyan movie, The Game Plan. She also hosts a three-hour advice program on weekday evenings on Kenyan FM radio.

Apr 27  China's premier, Wen Jiabao, promises to help clean China's air and water and to combat global warming.

Apr 29  In support of Turkey's secularism, as many as one million people march through Istanbul. The foreign minister, Abdullah Gul, was the only candidate for president and elected on the 27th by parliament. Turkey's president traditionally defends the country's separation of state and religion. Mr. Gul's is widely feared because of what some believe is his hidden Islamic agenda.

Apr 30  US military killed in Iraq in April is 104, up from 86 in March.

to March 2007 | to May 2007

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