Canadian children sing ancient Arabic song to welcome refugees

Updated 13 December 2015
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Canadian children sing ancient Arabic song to welcome refugees

OTTAWA: The first plane of Syrian refugees landed in Toronto late on Thursday, and Canada has wasted no time in welcoming them.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was at the airport to personally welcome the 163 new arrivals from Beirut, helping distribute warm winter coats.
On Friday, a video of a children’s choir singing a beautiful song in Arabic to their new neighbors surfaced.
The traditional song ‘Tala’ Al-Badru ‘Alayna’ is one of the oldest in Islam. It was sung by the Ansar (Helpers) to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) when he sought refuge in their city of Madinah and its message is one of welcome and hope.
Several commenters on social media said the gesture made them cry.
The lyrics are:
Oh the white moon rose over us
From the valley of Wada’
And we owe it to show gratefulness
Where the call is to Allah

Oh you, who were raised among us
Coming with a word to be obeyed
You have brought to this city nobleness,
Welcome best caller to God’s way


Python selfie puts Indian forest ranger in tight spot

Updated 54 min 16 sec ago
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Python selfie puts Indian forest ranger in tight spot

  • The Indian rock python is a non-venomous species, but it can quickly kill its prey by constricting blood flow

KOLKATA: An India forestry ranger found himself in a bind after a python briefly strangled him while he posed for pictures with the giant snake.
Wildlife officer Sanjay Dutta was called in Sunday by frantic villagers in West Bengal after they saw the 40-kilogramme (88-pound) python swallowing a goat alive.
Instead of placing it safely inside a bag, the ranger wrapped it around his neck and posed for pictures with stunned villagers.
But panic spread as the huge snake wound itself around Dutta’s neck, forcing him to struggle to free himself from its vice-like grip.
He escaped unscathed, but a little red-faced.
The Indian rock python is a non-venomous species, but it can quickly kill its prey by constricting blood flow and can grow up to 10 meters (33 feet) long.
West Bengal’s forest department has launched an official inquiry into the ranger’s conduct and flouting of safety protocols.
But Dutta said he only wanted to save the reptile from the villagers who were readying to club it to death with sticks.
“My first instinct was to rescue the snake. I carried it on my shoulders and held its mouth firmly,” Dutta told AFP.
“I was not scared for even a moment (when the python tightened its grip) because had I panicked, it could have been fatal.”
Dutta said he did not have a bag to carry the snake, which he transported to a safe location in his car and released into the wild.