If the Yemenis aren’t Arabs then who’s an Arab? The Yemenis don’t need to prove their Arab or Islamic identity, it’s those attacking Yemen that need to search for proof of their Arab or Islamic identity.
—  Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on propaganda against the Yemeni people accusing them of being a “Persian rebellion”. In Arab media today, “Persian” is the new word for Shi'a as “thug” is the new “N word” in western media.

Moroccan Visual Artist Hassan Hajjaj Premieres Trailer for New Doc on Marraksh Henna Artist.

A film two years in the making, Hassan Hajjaj’s documentary A Day in the Life Of Karima: A Henna Girl follows and gives us a glimpse into the life of henna artist Karima who operates in the Marrakech’s Djemaa el-Fna market place. But, as the trailer reveals, Karima is many more things.

The film will have its official world premiere at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) on May 13th and entrance is free.

Vijay Awards 2015 – Winners List

Best Stunt Director: Supreme Sundar (Goli Soda)

Best Choreographer: Shobi (Jeeva)

Best Costume Designer: Niranjini Perumal (Kaaviya Thalaivan)

Best Art Director: Sabu Cyril (Lingaa)

Best Editor: Vivek (Jigarthanda)

Best Debut Actress: Malavika Nair (Cuckoo)

Best Supporting Actress: Seetha (Goli Soda)

Best Supporting Actor: Kalaiarasan (Madras)

Best Lyricist: Kabilan (Yaan)

Best Screenplay/Story Writer: Vijay Milton (Goli Soda)

Best Lifetime Contributor for Tamil Cinema: AVM Saravanan

Best Supporting Child Artist: Sara (Saivam)

Best Debut Actor: Dulquer Salmaan (Vayaai Moodi Pesuvom)

Best Director Award: Karthik Subbaraj (Jigarthanda)

Best Dialogue Writer: R. Parthiban (Kathai Thiraikathai Vasanam Iyakkam)

Best Villain: Bobby Simha (Jigarthanda)

Best Cinematographer: Gavemic (Jigarthanda)

Best Playback Singer (Female): Uthra Unnikrishnan (Pissasu)

Best Playback Singer (Male): Pradeep Kumar (Madras)

Best Actor (Female): Amala Paul (Vellaiyilla Pattathari)

Favourite Heroine: Hansika (Maan Karate)

Special Jury Award for Best Innovation: Soundarya Rajinikanth (Kochadaiiyaan)

Favourite Director: AR Murugadoss (Kaththi)

Best Crew: Sathuranga Vettai Team

Best Background Score: Santhosh Narayanan (Jigarthanda)

Favourite Film: Kaththi

Best Film: Vellaiyilla Pattathari

Special Jury Award for Film: Madras

Best Music Director: Anirudh Ravichander (Vellaiyilla Pattathari)

Best Actor (Male): Dhanush (Vellaiyilla Pattathari)

Best Find of the Year: Raju Murugan (Cuckoo Director)

Best Comedian: Thambi Ramaiah (Kathai Thiraikathai Vasanam Iyakkam)

Favourite Hero: Superstar Rajinikanth (Lingaa)

Favourite Song: Amma Amma (Vellaiyilla Pattathari)

Best Debut Director: Ram (Mundaasuppatti)

Tu t’es enfui au désert avec les ailes du coeur, ce désert est perdu dans l’étendue de ton coeur. Rumi XIIIs, 2005
Water-based pigments on paper
29 ½ × 21 7/10 in
75 × 55 cm

O Lord! Forgive what You know about me more than I do. If I
return (to the sins) You return to forgiveness. My Allah forgive me for
what I had promised to myself but You did not find its fulfillment with
me. My Allah forgive me with what I sought nearness to You with my
tongue but my heart opposed and did not perform it. My Allah forgive my
winking of the eye, vile utterances, desires of the heart and errors of

Imam Ali (AS) 

-Nahjul-Balgaha ,  Sermon 77 Supplications by Imam Ali ibn Abu Talib (AS)

Iran to appoint first female ambassador since Islamic revolution

Marzieh Afkham to become only second female ambassador for Iran as Rouhani says it is government’s duty to create equal opportunities for women

“Iran is to appoint its first female ambassador since the 1979 Islamic revolution, marking a breakthrough for women in government under the moderate president, Hassan Rouhani.

Marzieh Afkham, who is the country’s first foreign ministry spokeswoman, will head a mission in east Asia, the state news agency reported. It is not clear to which country she will be posted as her appointment has yet to be announced officially.

Afkham will only be the second female ambassador Iran has had. Under the last shah’s rule, Mehrangiz Dolatshahi, a three-time MP known for her advocacy of the family protection law, which gave women the right of divorce and child custody, became an ambassador to Denmark in 1976, a post she held until the revolution.

Women in Iran need the permission of their husband or legal custodian, such as their father, to travel abroad. The government is also reluctant to promote women who are single and not married. Afkham was reported to have married last year.

Rouhani said this week that he saw it as his government’s duty to create equal opportunities for women and spoke against crackdowns by the religious police on women who push the boundaries of the mandatory hijab by showing their hair. But a decision to overturn discriminatory practices is not solely in his hands.

Since taking office, Rouhani has taken a softer line on gender equality, making clear he opposes segregation of men and women at universities or banning them from attending big sporting events alongside men. But he is yet to deliver on many of his promises. No women currently hold a ministerial role, though Rouhani has a few serving as his aides and vice-presidents. 

Last month, the human rights group Amnesty issued a strong warning over two proposed bills being considered by the Iranian parliament, which seek to reverse the country’s progressive laws on family planning by outlawing voluntary sterilisation and restricting access to contraceptives to increase Iran’s population. Amnesty said the move would set Iranian women back by decades and reduce them to “baby-making machines”.

Although women can vote and drive in Iran, discriminatory laws persist. Women are required to wear the hijab and in court their testimony is worth only half that of a man.

Mohammadreza Jalaeipour, a former political prisoner and activist, said:
“Rouhani has stepped up his rhetoric for gender quality, which is a good move, but we need to see more women in ministerial, or even middle-ranking political jobs, such as governors and political directors.”

Read the full piece here