Atheist Republic News Summary: NEW American anti-Female Genital Mutilation…

Victory! NEW American anti-Female Genital Mutilation Law!
Location: United States of America

On January 7, 2021, the United States tightened the ban on the “abhorrent practice” of female genital mutilation (FGM), attempting to end the ancient ritual that millions of girls worldwide endure. By voting the “STOP FGM ACT” into law, federal authorities can increase the maximum jail sentence for those who perform FGM from 5 to 10 years. The new law closes loopholes, extending the span of punishable offenses relating to FGM. The law specifies that “Congress has the affirmative power to prohibit this conduct.” Part of the law in Section 3(c) reads, “...It shall not be a defense to a prosecution under this section that female genital mutilation is required as a matter of religion, custom, tradition, ritual, or standard practice.” A legal expert on FGM with the global rights group Equality Now, Divya Srinivasan, advises that the new law will help the U.S. government persuade other countries to act. “Ending FGM is part of the U.S. foreign policy, so it’s important for their credibility that they have a strong law themselves,” Srinivasan added.

3 Sentenced to Death for Blasphemy in Pakistan
Location: Pakistan

In Pakistan, an anti-terrorism court sentenced three people to death for social media posts insulting the Prophet Muhammad. According to the Federal Investigative Agency (FIA), which has been investigating the cases since 2017, two men were charged with spreading sacrilegious ideas on social media using fake profiles. A third man allegedly uploaded blasphemous content on YouTube. A fourth man was also accused of spreading blasphemy within his classroom. The four accused were arrested in September 2017, when they pleaded not guilty to those charges. This is Pakistan’s first case where the accused are convicted for expressing blasphemous ideas on social media. According to the US Commission for International Religious Freedom, Pakistan has dozens of convicts on death row or serving life imprisonment for committing blasphemy.

Twitter Deletes Chinese embassy's Uyghur 'Emancipation' Tweet
Location: USA & China

Twitter recently deleted a post from the U.S. Chinese Embassy that claimed that Uighur women had their minds "emancipated" by policies that meet the United Nations criteria for genocide in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China. The tweet states: "Study shows that in the process of eradicating extremism, the minds of Uygur women in Xinjiang were emancipated and gender equality and reproductive health were promoted, making them no longer baby-making machines. They are more confident and independent." Twitter removed the Chinese Embassy's tweet following widespread objections that accused Beijing of seeking to expunge Uighur culture. The post was deleted for violating rules against “the dehumanization of a group of people.” The tweet linked to an article written by state-run media China Daily, which celebrated declining birth-rates in Xinjiang. Scholar Adrian Zenz, known for his studies of the re-education camps in Xinjiang, reports that Uighur women are threatened with being imprisoned in internment camps if they refuse to abort pregnancies that exceed local birth quotas.

Man Claims Jesus Told Him To Cause Fatal Crash To Save Infant Son
Location: Kentucky, United States of America

On January 9th, 2021, a Kentucky man with his infant son in his lap caused a fatal head-on collision while allegedly under the influence of alcohol. The police said the 30-year-old driver, Jesse Brown, reported that he heard Jesus tell him to steer into oncoming traffic if he wanted to save his infant son, Dalton. “Brown stated that Dalton had died and Jesus told him that if he would hit the oncoming car, Dalton would be brought back to life and things would be better,” Officer Warinner noted. But according to police, the baby had not died. The preliminary investigation notes that Brown was holding his 7-month-old son while driving. After his truck crossed over into oncoming traffic and caused a head-on collision, the driver of the other vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene of the wreck.

50-Year-Old Indian Woman Gang-Raped, Allegedly Murdered by Priest
Location: Uttar Pradesh, India

A 50-year-old Indian woman was allegedly gang-raped and murdered by three men, including a temple priest, inside a temple in the village of Budaun, Uttar Pradesh. According to police, the woman had sustained horrific injuries, especially to her genitals. The 50-year-old victim, who worked as an Anganwadi (rural child care) worker, went to perform pooja (a worship ritual) in a temple on Sunday evening. She regularly visited the temple for the past several years since she lived in the vicinity. The temple priest, who regularly performed rituals in the temple, lived in the same area and was known to the locals. On Sunday night, January 3rd, three men dropped the woman outside her house in a critically injured condition. She died during treatment at a district hospital.

White TikTok mom blasted for making kids pray to Black women
Location: United States of America

A white mom on TikTok recently posted a video of her children "hailing" Black women. She later removed the video after Black content creators said it made them feel "uncomfortable" and "threatened." The user posted a video of her children on their knees praying with added background audio that said, "Black women are the reason that Donald Trump is no longer gonna be our president, all hail Black women." The now-deleted video included the captions, "me teaching my white boys how to behave" and "they are marching around chanting 'all hail Black women' after this took like 5 takes." Another TikTok content creator posted a response to the video saying, "Do y'all not understand that these TikToks actually make Black women uncomfortable" and "black women do not feel safe, we do not feel protected; we actually feel fairly threatened right now because you are putting a target on our backs."

Turkish Sex Cult Leader Sentenced to More Than 1,000 Years in Jail
Location: Turkey

A Turkish Islamic televangelist was sentenced to 1,075 years in jail on Monday, January 11th, for running a decades-old cult whose members were accused of crimes ranging from sexual assault and blackmail, money laundering, even espionage. State-run Anadolu Agency reported that Adnan Oktar, who wrote books about Islamic creationism under the pseudonym Harun Yahya, was tried in Istanbul alongside 236 other alleged members or enablers of his religious television network. The cult leader is known for surrounding himself with his “kittens,” young women with who were often dressed in revealing clothing while he aired his verdicts on religious and political matters.

German Catholic officials ask reporters for 'silence' on child abuse report
Location: German

The Archdiocese of Cologne called for a press conference on Tuesday, January 5th, to discuss an unpublished report investigating child abuse in the German Catholic Church. Specifically, church officials were to explain issues regarding the report's methodology. According to Cologne Archbishop Reiner Maria Woelki, these issues were the reason for withholding the current document from the public. Church representatives said they would show journalists a redacted version of the report. They also asked reporters to sign a pledge to keep the contents "secret," including information on crimes, alleged perpetrators, and implicated church officials. The agreement read, "the journalist commits himself to exercise absolute silence regarding this information." All of the journalists at the event refused to sign the statement.

Indian State Gov Insists That “Anti-Conversion” Law Is Not Bigoted
Location: Uttar Pradesh, India

Since the Uttar Pradesh (UP) "Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance" was enacted over a month ago, police have booked 86 people in 16 cases involving allegations of forced or deceitful religious conversion for marriage between Hindus and Muslims. In all, 54 people have been arrested, including family members and friends of the main accused. In all cases, the key accused is Muslim. A senior UP government functionary said, "the law does not espouse any motive to single out any religion or faith. Such legislation was necessary to prevent only those marriages that are done with the sole purpose of conversion. The law, in fact, safeguards human rights by preventing fake, fraudulent, or deceitful premises of marriage." In fact, when interviewed by the ThePrint India, several women involved in these cases say that they were coerced into giving statements against their romantic partners, not coerced into conversion or marriage! Many of the women portrayed as "victims" allege that they were pressured to comply with the police reports by their parents, particularly their fathers, or even by local far-right Hindu groups.

Atheist Republic is censored and blocked in India!
Location: India

As of Thursday, January 14th, Atheist Republic's main Facebook page has been completely blocked by Facebook to all users in India. This means that hundreds of thousands of our members have lost access to our community and our engagement is completely neutered! In this video Armin and Susanna discuss the collusion of Big Tech with the far-right ruling party of India, and an attorney who may have triggered Facebook to enact this ban. They also discuss the imperative of joining the newsletter, and EXCLUSIVE perks that are coming to the newsletter subscribers!

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