The UAE Embassy in Thailand has warned UAE Citizens in the Hua Hin area near Bangkok to stay indoors following three coordinated explosions in the southern city. The embassy also urged Emiratis not to travel to Thailand where the anti-government protests have escalated.
A gunman shot and killed an imam and his assistant on the street near their mosque in a working-class corner of Queens on Saturday afternoon, the police said.
The police said the imam, whom they identified as Maulama Akonjee, 55, and the assistant, Thara Uddin, 64, were shot shortly before 2 p.m. near the mosque, Al-Furqan Jame Masjid, in the Ozone Park neighborhood.
Officers found them with gunshot wounds to their heads when they arrived at the scene, at the corner Liberty Avenue and 79th Street. The police said that both men were taken to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where they died.
The crime, during a wave of anti-Muslim hostility across the country, unsettled many in the neighborhood, an enclave that area leaders described as a growing hub of Muslim families from Bangladesh that straddles the border between Brooklyn and Queens.
The two men had just left a prayer session at the mosque, according to Misba Abdin, 47, who attends the mosque and is a leader of an area nonprofit that works with Bangladeshi residents. Mr. Abdin and other congregants said that Mr. Akonjee, originally from Bangladesh, lived in the area.
Members of the Bangladeshi Muslim community served by the mosque said they want the shootings to be treated as a hate crime.
At least four Thai nationals have been killed and about 36 others were injured, including 10 foreigners.
No one has claimed responsibility for the blasts, and it’s not clear if the bombings are connected. Thai police say there’s no evidence the attacks are related to international terrorism.
The Philippines military said on Friday it was taking seriously what it believed was a call by ISIS militants for an attack on the Miss Universe contest being held in the country next year.
The military said a recent bomb-making video posted on social media, apparently by ISIS militants in the Middle East, carried a message in Arabic script reading: “create bomb for Miss Universe”. The pageant is due to be held in the capital, Manila, in January. “We are taking the threat seriously,” armed forces spokesman Colonel Edgard Arevalo told reporters, though adding that authorities had yet to establish the authenticity of the video or determine its source.
The Philippines says there are no ISIS militants in the country although the group has accepted, in a video message, the allegiance of a notorious Philippine militant group known as Abu Sayyaf.
The Ministry of Tourism, which helps organise the Miss Universe pageant, was not alarmed by the threat, said ministry spokeswoman Ina Zara-Loyola. The government was confident the army and police were “more than capable in ensuring the public safety and security”, she said.
Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan has expressed his disappointment at being “detained” by US authorities at Los Angeles International Airport.
It is not clear why Khan was detained, or for how long.
The US ambassador to India has apologised for the detention and said authorities were working to ensure it did not happen again.
In 2012, Khan was detained for 90 minutes at the White Plains airport near New York. In 2009, he was stopped for two hours at Newark airport. He was released after India’s embassy intervened.
Two small bombs have exploded in the popular seaside resort town of Hua Hin, leaving at least one person dead and 20 others injured. the bombs were hidden in planters on a busy street with open-front bars. The victims include Thais and foreign tourists, whose nationalities were not immediately known, according to the reports.
The Philippines’ President Rodrigo Duterte sparked controversy by calling the US ambassador “gay” in comments that prompted Washington to summon Manila’s envoy to complain , Duterte reportedly used a local Tagalog language homophobic slur to express his displeasure with US Ambassador Philip Goldberg in televised comments on Friday.
“As you know, I’m fighting with (US Secretary of State John Kerry’s) ambassador. His gay ambassador, the son of a whore. He pissed me off,” Duterte said.
Philippine foreign affairs spokesman Charles Jose confirmed the meeting but said Manila’s envoy had been “invited to the State Department to discuss the entire breadth of Philippines-US relations.”
Duterte first came into conflict with US envoy Goldberg on the campaign trail, after he said he wanted to rape a “beautiful” Australian missionary who was sexually assaulted and murdered in a 1989 prison riot in Davao, the city he ran for two decades.