Iraq court sentences four to death for joining Daesh

U.S. Marines from Lima Company, a part of a 7-th Marine Regiment take a rest in front of the Martyrs Monument (not pictured) in Baghdad April 9, 2003. (REUTERS)
Updated 21 April 2019

Iraq court sentences four to death for joining Daesh

  • Daesh captured a third of Iraq in 2014 but was largely defeated both there and in neighboring Syria where US-backed forces proclaimed last month the capture of Daesh’s last territory

BAGHDAD: An Iraqi court has sentenced four people to death by hanging for belonging to the Daesh militant group and committing terrorist crimes in Iraq and Syria, a judiciary statement said on Sunday.
The four men, wanted by Iraqi authorities, were handed to Iraq by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the statement said.
A Baghdad criminal court convicted them for joining Daesh and “carrying out criminal operations that targeted innocent civilians with the aim of undermining peace and stability in Iraq and Syria.” A judicial source said the four men were Iraqi.
In February, Iraq’s military said the SDF had handed 280 Iraqi and foreign detainees to Baghdad.
Thousands of foreigners have fought on behalf of Daesh in Iraq and Syria since at least 2014. Many foreign women came — or were brought — from overseas to join the militants. Iraqi courts are relying on counterterrorism laws to prosecute thousands of suspects, including foreign militants, for joining the ultra-hard-line militant group.
Human rights groups have accused Iraqi and other regional forces of inconsistencies in the judicial process and flawed trials leading to unfair convictions.
Daesh captured a third of Iraq in 2014 but was largely defeated both there and in neighboring Syria where US-backed forces proclaimed last month the capture of Daesh’s last territory.


Cairo turns to Tokyo for a lesson on education

Updated 23 August 2019

Cairo turns to Tokyo for a lesson on education

  • The Japanese education system is recognized as one of the top five worldwide

CAIRO: Egypt is seeking Japan’s help to improve its education system, which has fallen to 130th place in international rankings.

The Japanese education system is recognized as one of the top five worldwide, and Cairo is hoping to apply key aspects of Japan’s approach to the Egyptian curriculum.

Education has played a major role in transforming Japan from a feudal state receiving aid following World War II to a modern economic powerhouse. 

During a visit to Japan in 2016, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi discussed political and economic development with Japanese officials, and was also briefed on the Japanese education system.

The Egyptian leader visited Japanese schools and called on Japan to help Egypt introduce a similar system in its schools.  

As part of Egyptian-Japanese cooperation, Japan’s embassy established cultural cooperation as well as technical and professional education links between the two countries. Collaboration has been strengthened from kindergarten to post-university, with Japanese experts contributing in various education fields.

Japanese experts have held seminars in schools across the country, focusing on basic education. 

During one seminar, Japan highlighted the importance of enhancing education by playing games during kindergarten and primary school, encouraging children’s ability and desire to explore.  

Education expert Ola El-Hazeq told Arab News that the Japanese system focuses on developing students’ sense of collective worth and responsibility toward society. This starts with their surrounding environment by taking care of school buildings, educational equipment and school furniture, for example.

“Japanese schools are known for being clean,” El-Hazeq said. “The first thing that surprises a school visitor is finding sneakers placed neatly in a locker or on wooden shelves at the school entrance. Each sneaker has its owner’s name on it. This is a habit picked up at most primary and intermediate schools as well as in many high schools.”

Japanese students also clean their classrooms, collect leaves that have fallen in the playground and take out the garbage. In many cases, teachers join students to clean up schools and also public gardens and beaches during the summer holidays.

El-Hazeq added that neither the teachers nor the students find it beneath their dignity to carry out such chores.

The academic year in Japan continues for almost 11 months, different from most other countries, with the Japanese academic year starting on April 1 and ending on March 31 the following year.

Japan’s school days and hours are relatively longer in comparison with other countries. Usually the school day is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Teachers normally work until 5 p.m. but sometimes up to 7 p.m. Holidays are shorter than in other countries. Spring and winter holidays are no longer than 10 days, and the summer holiday ranges from 40 to 45 days.