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Coverage of spiritual, faith-based and religious affairs 

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Clashes in Montenegro over the inauguration of new Serbian Orthodox Patriarch

Clashes in Montenegro over the inauguration of new Serbian Orthodox Patriarch

The Balkan country of Montenegro seceded from neighbouring Serbia in 2006 after a referendum. However, around 30 per cent of the country's 620,000 inhabitants still consider themselves Serb. The main Montenegrin church also remained attached to the Serbian Orthodox tradition. The Serbian Orthodox Church is still the dominant religious institution in the Balkan country, with 70 per cent of Christians affiliated with it. This connection with Serbia regularly leads to tensions within the country.
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The Taliban settle in

The Taliban settle in

Whilst Taliban fighters made themselves at home at the presidential office in Kabul, and in other government offices across the capital, the leadership of the Taliban appears to be still concentrated in the city of Kandahar, in the South of the country, the power base of this mainly Pashtun movement. It was to there that the Taliban’s co-founder and political leader, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, flew to from Doha on Tuesday as the militants pledged peaceful relations with other countries and respect for the rights of women.

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From Bethlehem to Rome, subdued Christmas celebrations amidst pandemic lockdown

From Bethlehem to Rome, subdued Christmas celebrations amidst pandemic lockdown

Bethlehem on Thursday ushered in Christmas Eve with a stream of joyous marching bands and the triumphant arrival of the top Catholic clergyman in the Holy Land, but few people were there to greet them as the coronavirus pandemic and a strict lockdown dampened celebrations in the traditional birthplace of Jesus.
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Al-Azhar proscribes membership in the Muslim Brotherhood

Al-Azhar proscribes membership in the Muslim Brotherhood

“It is clear to the public what these groups have done in distorting some texts, cutting them out of their context, and using them to achieve personal goals or interests and corrupting the land,” al-Azhar said in a fatwa. “Membership in these extremist groups is considered forbidden by Shariah.”
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Rumi goes virtual

Rumi goes virtual

The 747th anniversary of the death of the most important Sufi mystic and poet in the world, Jalal al-Din Rumi was commemorated during the “Seb-i Arus” ceremony held on December 17 at the Mevlana Cultural Centre in Konya, in Turkey. This annual commemoration was this year held in virtual format because of the coronavirus pandemic
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"Sad, fateful day, for religious freedom in Europe"

"Sad, fateful day, for religious freedom in Europe"

In a recent controversial decision, the European Court of Justice has upheld a ban on kosher and halal slaughter in Belgium.  Deutche Welle's religious affairs expert, Christoph Strack says that bans on such forms of animal slaughter in Belgium, and elsewhere, arose over debates over the way Islam is practiced in Europe. Individuals sought to impose tighter rules on Islam on the continent — yet also hit Europe's Jews.