Scent of freedom for Kashgari who repented Twitter antics

Updated 08 November 2013

Scent of freedom for Kashgari who repented Twitter antics

A young Saudi man has been released after spending 21 months in prison for his blasphemous remarks about God and the Last Prophet (peace be upon him), according to sources.
Hamza Kashgari was released early Tuesday. He had repented at his trial for making the remarks on Twitter.
Abdul Rahman Al-Lahem, a lawyer interested in the case, tweeted the news: “Hamza Kashgari has been released. Congratulations to his family, friends and loved ones.”
Abdul Aziz Al-Qasim, a media figure, said: “I received a call from Hamza’s mother, informing me about the release of her son. I ask Allah to accept his repentance and we must help him remain persistent.”
Kashgari issued a statement on his old Twitter account after his release: “Hopeful morning for the lives that do not die, and thanks to God for His lasting kindness.”
Kashgari was accused of tweeting blasphemous comments about God and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) on his Twitter account. He fled to Malaysia but was arrested on arriving in that country and brought back to the Kingdom.
Some Twitter users welcomed his release while others denounced him.
Abdul Rahman Subaihi stated: “Rejoice in his repentance. As your Lord says, ‘God rejoices over the repentance of His servants.’”
Mohammad Al-Saeedi, a professor of jurisprudence at the University of Umm Al-Qura, welcomed Kashgari’s repentance and said he believed the young man was sincere. He said Islam does not approve of rejecting people after their repentance.
“He should always be thankful to God, mix with righteous people and distance himself from those who are skeptics of the book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Prophet (pbuh). He also advised tweeters to be kind to him in their comments.
Some tweeters, however, were adamant that he should not have been released because this would deter others from insulting God, the Prophet (pbuh), and his companions.

Saudi Arabia tells UN: We are promoting sustainable methods in housing

Updated 12 min 25 sec ago

Saudi Arabia tells UN: We are promoting sustainable methods in housing

  • Saudi Green Building Forum attended conference at UN headquarters
  • SGBF demonstrated its commitment to affordable housing through environmentally sustainable practices

JEDDAH: The Saudi Green Building Forum (SGBF) has shown that its mission aligns with the UN Commission for Social Development. 

A SGBF delegation attended the 58th session of the commission at UN headquarters in New York City on Wednesday.

The SGBF demonstrated its commitment to affordable housing through environmentally sustainable practices.

“The SGBF supports the integration of affordable housing within urban developments, architectural design and use of materials that support occupants’ wellbeing, and minimizing construction waste through efficient methods,” said Faisal Al-Fadl, SGBF chair representative to the UN.

Al-Fadl told Arab News: “Saudi Arabia is addressing key messages on clean energy and is focusing on a low-carbon, resource-efficient, inclusive circular economy and building systems addressing these core issues.

“The Kingdom is complying with the principle of sustainability and is helping to advance the resilience of our cities.”

The UN Commission for Social Development’s role is to monitor national and global socioeconomic trends, identify emerging issues and assess their implications for social policy at the national and international levels.

The session reviewed some of the social challenges of implementing the 2030 Agenda, with a focus on issues relevant to the three core social development goals identified at the World Summit for Social Development. 

The goals are eradicating poverty, promoting productive employment and decent work and promoting social inclusion.

The SGBF’s mission focuses on the resilience of city development practices within affordable housing developments to minimize negative impacts on the planet and citizens.

The forum addressed the practices of green systems and sustainable development in the Arab world. It said it will continue to work with the commission to support new resolutions on social and development issues, including the first-ever text on homelessness to be approved by a UN intergovernmental body.