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Kerry visits Kenya, asks people to unite against terrorism

India Blooms News Service | | 04 May 2015, 07:06 pm
Nairobi, May 4 (IBNS): US Secretary of State John Kerry, who is currently visiting Kenya, on Monday urged people to unitedly fight against terrorism.

"Let me be clear: The terrorists who struck on August 7th, 1998 failed utterly in their purpose, which was to implant fear in the hearts of the Kenyan people and to divide America from the citizens of this country. They failed for the same reason that terrorists will always fail. Yes, they can reduce a building to rubble; and yes, they can even deprive innocent people of their lives," Kerry said.

"But they do not give anyone anything of what really makes life worthwhile: a sense of community, of looking out for one another, of creating something valuable and new, of living in dignity and honor. Without a doubt, those who delight in the suffering and death of others have actually already lost everything that makes life worth living for," he said.

"My friends, we know that the struggle in which we are all engaged now is not going to be over soon. Nearly two years ago at Westgate Mall, five weeks ago at Garissa University – the college – and at other times in smaller yet equally vile attacks, terrorists have brought more tragedy to families here in Kenya," he said.

Kerry said: "We do, however, have the power to fight back, not only with our military and law enforcement, but also through something that may even be more powerful and that may make a bigger difference in the end, and that is our unity and the character of our ideals. Unlike some, we do not define ourselves in terms of hate. We are builders. We are teachers. We are dreamers. We are doers. And we can see proof that in Rukia Ali, who suffered and grieved with others, both American and Kenyan, who worked at the embassy in 1998; we can see it by giving and receiving strength from her colleagues – and look, she has continued to serve. That tells the whole story, marking this year the conclusion of 25 years of a career."

He said the terrorist organizations should be a thing of the past.

"So let us agree the only place for al-Qaida, al-Shabaab, Boko Haram, Daesh, and others like them is in the past. The future does not belong to them. The future belongs to the children who are laughing and playing right now in the streets of Nairobi, of New York, of Kano, of Dar es Salaam, of Mogadishu, of Garissa – children who have the right to grow up with joy in their hearts and the opportunity to build full lives of accomplishment and love, and to build families and a future. It is to them that we must dedicate our own efforts to apprehend and prosecute the guilty, secure borders, strengthen governance, invest in the health and well-being of all people, and unite across every boundary of race, nation, ethnicity, and creed to defeat terror and to enrich life," Kerry said.

Kenya has witnessed several terrorist attacks over the years.

Kerry on Monday visited a memorial in the country to the 1998 bombing of the US embassy

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm