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Author Archive

20 Sep, 2017

Myanmar proves that women leaders are no better than the men

Bangkok – In February 2012, just a few months before the end of his five-year term, the then ASEAN Secretary-General Dr Surin Pitsuwan spoke at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand on the topic of “ASEAN and Change in Myanmar”. During the Q&A, I asked him if Myanmar had a chance to exercise the Last […]

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16 Sep, 2017

Many Businesses Still Fail to Report Financial Value from Strong Environmental Performance – Research

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE) — September 13, 2017 – Four in 10 telecommunications and consumer goods companies reporting to CDP fail to capture or report any financial value from strong environmental performance, according to new research released today by Accenture (NYSE: ACN), CDP and Hermes Investment Management. The largest emitters in the global economy – responsible […]

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15 Sep, 2017

Permanent People’s Tribunal on Myanmar to be held in Kuala Lumpur 18-22 Sept

Kuala Lumpur, 15 Sept (International Movement for a Just World) – The Permanent Peoples Tribunal’s concluding session on Myanmar which will convene at the Faculty of Law, University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur from the 18th to the 22nd of September 2017 has assumed extraordinary significance in light of the UN Security Council’s unanimous call […]

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13 Sep, 2017

Jewish Rabbi slags Israel for travel curbs on activists, Palestinians

A female Jewish rabbi has rebuked the Jewish state of Israel for barring inbound travel by pro-Palestinian activists, including herself, as well as for blocking travel in and out of occupied Palestine in general. In a Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur message to global members of the pro-Palestinian group Jewish Voice for Peace, its Deputy […]

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11 Sep, 2017

R.I.P. Inder Sharma – The Indian stalwart who brought China into PATA

Bangkok – Much has been written in praise of Mr Inder Sharma, the Indian travel & tourism stalwart who passed away on Sept 5 at the age of 86. The award-winning chairman of SITA World Travel was indeed one of India’s most eminent personalities – a thorough professional of impeccable integrity and formidable intellect, equally […]

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31 Aug, 2017

In Palestine, UN chief says two-state solution ‘only way to guarantee peace’

United Nations, (UN News Centre) 29 August 2017 – United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres today reiterated his call for a political solution to the Middle East conflict that would end Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land and would create an independent Palestinian state, living side by side with Israel in peace and security. “It is my […]

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24 Aug, 2017

Thai Foreign Ministry fam trip spotlights double-edged future facing the Kingdom

Bangkok – Courtesy of the Thai Foreign Ministry, 16 Bangkok-based foreign correspondents were treated to a whirlwind 15-hour fam trip on Aug 18 which spotlighted the double-edged future facing Thailand. While three of the stops underscored Thailand’s positive scientific, agricultural and infrastructure progress in line with its 4.0 national development policy, the last stop was […]

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17 Aug, 2017

What Charlottesville and the emergence of white supremacists means for the future of global travel

Bangkok – The emergence of the American white supremacist movement in the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia, has opened up a Pandora’s Box of issues that will have a significant impact on travel & tourism to and from the United States and around the world. By further complicating an already unstable geopolitical environment, it will have […]

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9 Aug, 2017

ASEAN@50: New book shows how ASEAN tourism undermined the ASEAN Miracle

Bangkok – When ASEAN marked the 50th anniversary of its founding on 08 Aug 2017, let the record show that the travel & tourism industry of Thailand, where ASEAN was born, negotiated and signed, did nothing, absolutely nothing, to commemorate the event. Neither did the Ministry of Tourism & Sports, nor the Tourism Authority of […]

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4 Aug, 2017

How Thai tourism’s history deficit saw it lose a huge ASEAN@50 opportunity

Bangkok – As ASEAN prepares to mark the 50th anniversary of its formation on 08 Aug 2017, the Thai tourism industry has lost a major opportunity to celebrate the central role played by the Kingdom in ASEAN’s formation, and better understand the significant linkage between peace, ASEAN integration, diplomacy and travel. Had there been greater […]

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3 Aug, 2017

Lessons from the Malaysian National Museum for the future of ASEAN

Kuala Lumpur — As a history buff, I enjoy visiting museums. These homes for the preservation of history are the best places to learn the lessons of history, and perhaps avoid repeating past mistakes. Last week, I visited the Malaysian National Museum in Kuala Lumpur for the third time. This visit had a special significance. […]

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24 Jul, 2017

Why the Thai Tourism Action Plan has outlived its usefulness, and what to do about it

Bangkok – When Tourism Authority of Thailand governor Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn unveiled the TAT Action Plan for 2018 on 17 July 2017, he did something never done before at this annual event. He flashed up a slide showing the impact of climate change and the deteriorating conditions of some popular Thai beach resorts. Without mentioning […]

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20 Jul, 2017

Maldives about to enter mass tourism era – is it prepared?

Malé, Maldives – A US$845 million expansion of the Malé international airport, the country’s biggest construction project ever, is expected to help the country hit a target of two million arrivals by 2020, about five times the national population and up from 1.3 million arrivals in 2016. Although it will open a new era in […]

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11 Jul, 2017

Thai hotels show that it pays to be Muslim-friendly

Bangkok – July 8 marked the start of Buddhist Lent, a three-month period of abstinence from alcohol and other forms of self-restraint. As Buddhists still have to travel for both business and leisure, those keen to abide by the Lord Buddha’s precepts may find it easier to avoid alcohol by staying in a Thai Muslim-friendly […]

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27 Jun, 2017

U.S. Supreme Court Muslim Travel Ban: Get set for chaos, confusion, maelstrom and more Islamophobia

The following is a roundup of reactions by four advocacy groups representing Muslims, the Arab-American community and the Business Travel community. ADC Troubled by the Supreme Court’s Decision to Partially Reinstate Travel Ban Washington, D.C., June 26, 2017 – The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination (ADC) condemns the Supreme Court’s decision to partially reinstate the Arab and Muslim […]

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14 Jun, 2017

153 detained for airline ticket fraud following worldwide Interpol operation

Lyon, France, 13 June 2017, (Interpol media release) – An international operation targeting airline fraudsters has resulted in the detention of 153 individuals suspected of using tickets purchased with stolen, compromised or fake credit card details. Involving 64 countries, during the sixth Global Airport Action Days from 6 to 8 June, 84 airlines and eight […]

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13 Jun, 2017

Mekong Tourism Forum 2017: Prospering, but for what Purpose?

Luang Prabang, Laos – One of the most powerful messages of the Mekong Tourism Forum held in this UNESCO world heritage site between 7-9 June was the contrast between the core argument advocated by the keynote speaker and the rest of the programme content. While Anna Pollock, the UK-based Founder of Conscious.Travel, flagged clear warnings […]

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10 Jun, 2017

Time to impose visa curbs on U.S. citizens globally

Bangkok – An extremist anti-Muslim hate group is planning to hold rallies across 29 cities in the United States on June 10 to highlight what it calls the threat of “Sharia law”. Although the website of ACT for America describes these rallies as being opposition to female genital mutilation, honor killings and violence towards the […]

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6 Jun, 2017

From a Vietnamese farm to Forbes: The start-up that wowed Subic Ecotourism Fest

Subic Bay, the Philippines – Of the many erudite presentations at the Subic Ecotourism Festival held between 28 May – 2 June, the most inspiring was the story of how a young Vietnamese girl overcame poverty, illiteracy, an alcoholic father and single motherhood to land up on the cover of Forbes Asia magazine as a […]

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27 May, 2017

Clash of Generations: A Politically Incorrect Analysis of the PATA Summit 2017

Colombo — Of the many facets of internal and external change impacting the Pacific Asia Travel Association, the most important is the demographic transition from the ageing old guard to the young generation of millennials. The significantly different issues and challenges facing both were on full display during the PATA Annual Summit (PAS) May 18-21. […]

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18 May, 2017

PATA pushes transparency agenda, goes public with finances

Colombo – The Pacific Asia Travel Association advanced its transparency agenda at its annual summit this week by publishing its first annual report in decades, including a detailed report on its financial status. In a move that will pressure other global and regional travel industry to follow suit, PATA CEO Mario Hardy circulated the annual […]

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15 May, 2017

20 years after moving to Asia, a chance for PATA to reclaim its former glory

Bangkok – The PATA Annual Summit to be held 18-22 May in Sri Lanka offers a golden chance for the regional travel organisation to capitalise on a number of converging opportunities and regain the leadership status dating back to 1998, when it moved the HQ from San Francisco to Bangkok. The Summit takes place against […]

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12 May, 2017

US-Bangla Airlines starts four-weekly flights to Bangkok

Bangkok – US-Bangla airlines, a rapidly rising private airline operating out of Bangladesh, has started four weekly flights to Bangkok. To be operated by a Boeing 737-800 aircraft, with a 156 (Y) and 8 (J) seat configuration, the full-service flights are expected to go a long way towards boosting Bangladeshi tourism to Thailand. However, the […]

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5 May, 2017

Exclusive Resinar 4 July: Promoting Thailand as a Muslim-Friendly Destination

Bangkok – Travel & tourism to Thailand began with the Americans. Then came the Europeans, followed by the Japanese and Koreans. It is now the era of Chinese, Russians and Indians. The next wave will be the ASEAN countries and the Islamic world. Each source market has its own unique traits and characteristics. For the […]

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4 May, 2017

Ex-beauty queen, Buddhist economics deployed to confront OTA oligopoly

Bangkok – A former Canadian-Russian beauty queen, a Dutch convert to Buddhism, a hotelier driven by a passion to put justice back into the travel booking system and a high-powered techie have teamed up to create a portal that will give the “oligopoly” of giant online travel agents a run for the money. Set for […]

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2 May, 2017

The US$5 million WTTC Summit: Did Thailand get money’s worth?

Bangkok – The Royal Thai Government forked out 135 million baht (about US$4 million) in official sponsorship funds to support the WTTC summit. This does not include additional sponsorship funds from other Thai travel industry organisations and the private sector, which would have totalled at least another US$1 million. Millionaire CEOs of some of the […]

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2 May, 2017

WTTC summit shines spotlight on “The Two Global Warmings”

Bangkok – Held under the lofty theme of “Transforming our World”, the 17th annual summit of the World Travel & Tourism Council was designed to focus on “Travel & Tourism’s power to transform economies, places and lives in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. If the two lead factors “Transforming our World” are […]

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24 Apr, 2017

Thailand’s bid to “disrupt the disrupters” in legal limbo

Bangkok – Taxi drivers in many Thai tourist cities have long been well known for ripping off passengers — meters that suddenly “did not work”, roads that were suddenly “closed for repairs” requiring the driver to take a longer route, shops that had “just shut down” so that the driver could take the passenger to […]

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12 Apr, 2017

Door open for travel & tourism academia to boost research on “The Other Global Warming”

Bangkok – The Malaysia-based Global Movement of Moderates Foundation and the Institute of Asian Studies, Chulalongkorn University, have signed an MoU to expand academic research in “religious moderation” as a universal force for peace, shunning all forms of extremism, nationalism and absolutism. Signed on April 5 at a conference designed to promote exactly that agenda, […]

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7 Apr, 2017

GMS Tourism “development” benefiting elites, cronies far more than the poor – NGO report

Bangkok – Development in the Mekong Subregion is benefitting “powerful elites, cronies, corporations, and some politicians” far more than the poor, as well as doing serious environmental damage that will create major long-term problems, according to the Bangkok-based NGO Focus on the Global South.   Entitled “An Overview of Large Scale Investment Projects in the […]

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2 Apr, 2017

Return journey to Uzbekistan, Heart of the Silk Road

For many years, promoting the Silk Road has been one of the priority projects of the UN World Tourism Organisation, which describes it thus: “Acclaimed as the ‘greatest route in the history of mankind’, the ancient Silk Road formed the first bridge between the East and the West and was an important vehicle for trade […]

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13 Mar, 2017

Huge budget boost for Brunei tourism ministry

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 13 March 2017 (14 Jumaada al-Akhir 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly compilation […]

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10 Mar, 2017

Spineless U.S. travel industry kisses Trump’s rump

On March 06, 2017, right after the issuance of the revised Muslim travel ban, U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow issued the following statement: “The American travel community supports efforts to bolster national security, and the Trump administration deserves some credit for the substantially more cautious and deliberate introduction of the revised executive […]

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8 Mar, 2017

Tourism, Business To Benefit From Saudi King’s Asia Visit

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 06 March 2017 (07 Jumada Al Akhir 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly compilation […]

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27 Feb, 2017

Maldives to host its first Int’l Travel Trade Show 12-13 July

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 27 February 2017 (30 Jumada Al Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly […]

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24 Feb, 2017

Will ITB Berlin 2017 be the last?

Bangkok – Is anyone in the travel & tourism industry aware that in 1917, exactly 100 years ago, Europe was in the third year of World War I. It was also a game-changing year. The tide turned against the Central Powers (mainly Germany, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire) with the entrance of the U.S. That […]

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22 Feb, 2017

Hypocritical U.S. Airlines Reject “Buy American, Hire American”

Source: Business Travel Coalition Industry Analysis

February 21, 2017 – In December 2016, full-time equivalent employment (FTE) at U.S. scheduled passenger airlines increased 3.7% over December 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). December was the 38th consecutive month that FTE for U.S. scheduled passenger airlines exceeded the previous year’s and was the highest monthly total since March 2008. […]

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21 Feb, 2017

Garuda to inaugurate Jakarta-Moscow flights in August

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 20 February 2017 (23 Jumaada al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly compilation of […]

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15 Feb, 2017

Unwelcome in Europe, U.S.? Welcome to Thailand, former Foreign Minister tells global Muslims

Bangkok – Muslims having problems going to Europe and the United States will find a more welcoming environment in Muslim-friendly Thailand, former Thai Foreign Minister Dr Surin Pitsuwan said last week. Speaking at the official opening of Al Meroz hotel on Feb 11, Thailand’s largest and newest four-star halal-friendly property, the Harvard-educated Dr Surin said […]

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13 Feb, 2017

Afghan cricketers to play for first time in Indian Premier League

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 13 February 2017 (16 Jumaada al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly compilation […]

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6 Feb, 2017

First, It’s the Muslims: An Evolution to Dictatorship

Bangkok – Here is a collection of articles that sound even more ominous warnings about the rise of Donald Trump, and the threat of another World War. They can be easily found via a Google search. Take these looming threats seriously. Or be ready to face the same havoc that Hitler caused, as the first […]

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6 Feb, 2017

How American right-wing extremists fan the flames of Islamophobia

Bangkok – As the Muslim-ban sparks global outrage and opposition, the tide is turning against the U.S. government under the leadership of Donald Trump. The travel & tourism industry, which has been the first to be affected by this ban, now has an opportunity to demonstrate whether it will be a part of the solution […]

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6 Feb, 2017

“Russia–Islamic World Kazan Summit 2017” set for 18-21 May

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 06 February 2017 (09 Jumaada al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines to go to the story. ============ THIS SPACE OPEN FOR SPONSORSHIP Islamic Travel Newswire, an influential and widely-read weekly compilation of […]

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3 Feb, 2017

UNWTO releases landmark report on contribution of Islamic culture to Asian Tourism

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Bangkok – The UN World Tourism Organisation has published a landmark report documenting the impact of Islamic culture and its contribution to Asian Tourism. Funded by the China Chamber of Tourism, the publication shines a light on the rich Islamic tangible and intangible cultural heritage resources throughout the Asia-Pacific and calls for a massive funding […]

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2 Feb, 2017

Pamelia Lee, Senior Director, Tourism Development, Singapore Tourism Board

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

Date & Place of Birth: 16 April 1942, Hawaii. Marital Status: Married with four children and four grandchildren. Education: University of Hawaii. Career 1978 joined Singapore Tourism Board May 1978 to Aug 1984 Head of Marketing Division. Sept 1984 to Mid July 1994 Head Product Development Division, serving as chief coordinator of the S$1 billion […]

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1 Feb, 2017

The Shredding of Brand USA

Bangkok – It should be more than clear by now that the global image of Brand USA is in a free-fall. In less than two weeks, President Trump has upset women’s groups, the Mexicans, potential partner countries in the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Muslim world. That already equates to roughly half the world’s population. The […]

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31 Jan, 2017

Civil Rights Groups Urge CEOs on Trump’s Business Council to Step Down NOW!

A compilation of just a few reactions and statements by various groups all around the world on U.S. President Donald Trump’s Muslim-ban order. =============== Civil Rights Groups Urge CEOs on Trump’s Business Council to Step Down NOW! Washington DC, 30 Jan 2017 — (Muslim Advocates media release) – As days of national protests have continued […]

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30 Jan, 2017

Pakistan is Home to World’s Largest Ice Glaciers

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 30 January 2017 (02 Jumada Al Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA Win FREE trips in Malaysia by […]

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30 Jan, 2017

Trump’s Muslim-ban highlights global threat posed by Israeli dual-citizens

The Muslim ban enacted by the Trump Administration will be applicable to dual nationality Muslims as well, according to the following report in the Wall Street Journal. Although it has been roundly denounced and protested, this unprecedented action has a silver lining: It has presented a perfect opportunity to scrutinise the security threat posed by […]

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29 Jan, 2017

Most Accurate Forecasts in the History of Travel & Tourism (1)

Bangkok – In my 35 years of covering the global travel and tourism industry, I have reported on numerous crises. Here are the four most important ones: 1) In the 1980s I covered the first global AIDS crisis, which began in Thailand. As the virus spread like wildfire, the over-arching preventive advice was to practice […]

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27 Jan, 2017

Visit ASEAN or Southeast Asia? Branding mess on full display at ATF 2017

Singapore – Hundreds of man-hours and thousands of dollars in taxpayers money have been expended over many years by ASEAN tourism officials in pursuit of a united brand image that will fulfill the dream of promoting ASEAN as a single destination. But, as was more than evident at the 36th ASEAN Tourism Forum between 16-20 […]

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25 Jan, 2017

Chris Hedges: Revolt Is the Only Barrier to a Fascist America

The destruction of democratic institutions, places where the citizen has agency and a voice, is far graver than the ascendancy to the White House of the demagogue Donald Trump. The coup destroyed our two-party system. It destroyed labor unions. It destroyed public education. It destroyed the judiciary. It destroyed the press. It destroyed academia. It […]

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25 Jan, 2017

ASEAN@50: STB media staff show how NOT to manage media

Singapore: The theme of this year’s 36th ASEAN Tourism Forum in Singapore was “Shaping Our Tourism Journey Together.” If the discourteous behaviour I experienced at the ASEAN tourism ministerial press conference is any indicator, that lofty pursuit of togetherness came with a few exceptions. Media management of the ATF 2017 in Singapore was vastly different […]

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24 Jan, 2017

Indonesian President Wants Ministers To Cut Speeches To 7 Minutes

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of stories of interesting events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 23 January 2017 (24 Rabee’ al-Thaani 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA Win FREE trips in Malaysia by entering this Photography […]

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23 Jan, 2017

Dr Bert van Walbeek, Founder & Chairman of first Asian, Thailand Chapter, SITE

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date & Place of Birth: 23 March 1943, Alkmaar, Netherlands Marital Status: Married with three children (from 2 marriages) and six grand children Education: Hogere Hotelschool-The Hague 1961-1964 Career 1968-1985 Employment with Hilton, Intercontinental Hotels and ITT Sheraton 1985-1988 Area Marketing Director , Royal Orchid Sheraton, Bangkok 1988-1991 VP Marketing, Middle East and North […]

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23 Jan, 2017

Joseph K. S. Chew, Executive Director, Singapore Tourist Promotion Board

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date & Place of Birth: 26 Dec. 1943, Singapore. Marital Status: Married with two sons and five grandchildren. Languages: Written – English & Malay. Spoken – English, Malay, Hokkien (Chinese Dialect) Education: BA (Hons) Economics, University of Singapore, 1963-66. Senior Executive Program, Columbia University, 1978 Senior Executive Program, Stanford University, 1994 Career 1966-1968 Straits […]

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23 Jan, 2017

Kevin Leong, Secretary General, Asian Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaux

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date & Place of Birth: 9 March 1950 Marital Status: Married Education: Bachelor of Business Administration (Singapore University) Career 1976 – Joined Singapore Tourism Board, and spent 36 years with the STB. Key positions held included Vice-President (Eastern Region) in the USA, Director of Exhibitions and Conventions, and Director of Events Marketing. 1979-1988 – […]

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23 Jan, 2017

ASEAN@50: Singapore disappoints with lacklustre Tourism Forum

Singapore — ASEAN tourism is one of the world’s great, if not the greatest, success stories. As the 10-country bloc marks its 50th anniversary, tourism is clearly established as a bedrock industry that has created billions of dollars worth of prosperity, jobs and income. The former battlefields of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam have emerged from […]

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19 Jan, 2017

Pek Hock Thiam, Chief Executive, Singapore Tourism Promotion Board

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

Date of Birth: 6 October 1941 Nationality: Singaporean Education:  1964 : Honors in Economics, University of Singapore Career: 1964 – 1969 : Shipping Executive, P&O Lines (biggest shipping line in the world then) 1969 – 1972 : Administrative Assistant, Ministry of Finance, Singapore  (taxation, custom duties, rates & fees) 1972 – 1988 : Deputy Secretary, Ministry […]

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19 Jan, 2017

Mr. Suparerk Soorangura, President, Thai Ecotourism & Adventure Travel Association

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

Date and Place of birth: 10 January 1951, Chachoengsao Education: Assumption Commercial College, Thammasat University, Faculty of Economics Marital status: Married with two sons. Position: Managing Director,  N.S. Travel & Tours Co Ltd. Work Experience Betagro Co.,Ltd. 1974-1990: Australian Embassy, Bangkok  1990-Present: -N.S. Travel & Tours Co.,Ltd; SERENATA Hotels & Resorts Group Business positions – Managing […]

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18 Jan, 2017

ASEAN@50 campaign brand confusion: Historic look at how it transpired, and how to fix it

SINGAPORE – As the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2017 gets under way here this week, one of the big rah-rah announcements will be a range of activities to promote the VisitASEAN@50 campaign. While that has got everyone excited, one key underlying issue remains unaddressed — the confusion and lack of clarity over the ASEAN brand image […]

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16 Jan, 2017

First Palestinian Embassy Opened in Vatican City

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 16 January 2017 (17 Rabee’ al-Thaani 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA Win FREE trips in Malaysia by entering […]

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13 Jan, 2017

Les Clark, Tourism Planning Consultant, Greater Mekong Subregion

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date and Place of Birth: November 1, 1950, Wellington, New Zealand Marital Status: Twice married with one son Education: University of Auckland, 1970-73; Colorado State University, 1977-78; University of Surrey 1985-86. Career: 1986 – 2004: Partner, Tourism Resource Consultants. 2004 – 2008: Director, Tourism Resource Consultants Ltd 2008 – 2013: Senior Associate, TRC Tourism […]

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13 Jan, 2017

Dr. Mina Gabor, First Woman Secretary, Department of Tourism, The Philippines

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

Date of Birth: 13 September 1939 Family: Widowed Education: – St. Scholastica’s College High School – BS in Commerce, University of Sto. Tomas – Master in Business Administration, University of the Philippines – PhD in Entreprenology, International University of Entreprenology, Hawaii Career: 2011 – Present: Founder and President, International School of Sustainable Tourism 2011 – […]

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13 Jan, 2017

The world at a crossroads – M.K. Narayan, The Hindu

The policy outlook for 2017 appears not too promising. Geopolitical risks will remain high. No improvement in the present unstable global order appears likely. New terror patterns will increase the lethality of terror attacks. Digital disruption and cyberthreats are poised to grow. The economic outlook, likewise, appears pessimistic, with the global economy caught in a […]

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13 Jan, 2017

The Imminent Demise of U.S. “Leadership”

Bangkok – In a few days, the world’s most powerful country will undergo a change in leadership. As the transition nears, it is becoming more than apparent that trouble looms, trouble that will have a significant impact on the way the world works and, by extension, on global travel & tourism. The Trump presidency will […]

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10 Jan, 2017

Naphalai Areesorn, Founding President, Thai Spa Association

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date of Birth: 18 May, 1952 Family: Married with two sons Education: Early schooling in Singapore and Malaysia. BA in Languages, Colorado Women’s College, USA; EMBA, Sasin Graduate Institute of Business Administration, Chulalongkorn University Career: 2001 – present: Editor-in-Chief, Thailand Tatler. Heads the editorial team of Blue Mango Publishing, publisher of Thailand Tatler and […]

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10 Jan, 2017

William E. Heinecke, Founder, CEO & Chairman, the Minor Group, Thailand

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

 Date and Place of Birth: June 4, 1949, USA Marital and Family Status: Married with two children. Education; Bangkok International School 1963 – 1967, previously based in Japan, Hong Kong and Malaysia. Career First employment venture was selling advertising next to his go-karting column in the Bangkok Post which proved so successful that at 17 […]

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10 Jan, 2017

Lebanon to launch first Beirut Restaurants Festival

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 09 January 2017 (11 Rabee’ al-Thaani 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA Win FREE trips in Malaysia by entering […]

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9 Jan, 2017

Elizabeth P. de la Fuente, Executive Director, Hotel & Restaurant Association, the Philippines

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

Place and date of Birth: 09 June 1944 Marital Status: Married with two daughters and two sons Education 1964 Maryknoll College, Liberal Arts Major in English Literature, Minor in Psychology. Dean’s List of honour students 1978-80 Executive Sessions, Conference Management Programme, Yale University. 1979 Convention Management Programme, International Association of Professional Congress Organisations. 1985-85 Executive […]

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9 Jan, 2017

Sheikh Jamaluddin bin Sheikh Mohamed, CEO, Brunei Tourist Board

ASEAN Travel & Tourism Hall of Fame – Initiated by Travel Impact Newswire Executive Editor Imtiaz Muqbil to recognise the many veterans who helped grow and shape ASEAN tourism over the last 50 years.

  Date and Place of Birth: 3 Oct 1957, Brunei Darussalam Marital status: Married with two sons. Education 1993-1994: Imperial College, University of London, Master of Business Administration (Strategic Management), Diploma Imperial College, Final year project: Banking Strategy in Europe 1978-1982 University of Teessdie, England, B.Sc (Hons) Computer and Mathematical Sciences Full time 4 years […]

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4 Jan, 2017

Two UN Chiefs set Travel & Tourism a challenging agenda for 2017 and beyond

Bangkok – New Year statements released by two top United Nations executives have set the stage for some heavy-duty soul-searching within the travel & tourism industry in the months and years ahead. Although their core and extremely important messages deserve introspective analysis and, perhaps even more important, rigorous debate in industry forums, it is highly […]

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4 Jan, 2017

Deir Ballout: A village struggling against Israeli settlement expansion

By Ula Mawkidi

DEIR BALLOUT, SALFIT, January 2, 2017 (WAFA) – Israel has recently been intensifying its violations of Palestinian rights through expansion of settlements, land grab and restriction on construction of regular and farm roads in the villages of Kufr al-Deek, Deir Ballout and al-Zawiyah, located to the west of Salfit in the north of the West […]

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2 Jan, 2017

New Cricket Stadiums Emerging in Afghanistan

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 02 January 2017 (04 Rabee’ al-Thaani 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA 2017: MALAYSIA MARKS VISIT PAHANG, TERENGGANU AND […]

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29 Dec, 2016

Jewish Rabbi to Muslims: “We Are With You”

Source: Jewish Voice for Peace

The following release was circulated by Rabbi Alissa Wise, Deputy Director, Jewish Voice for Peace, on 28 December 2016. Yesterday I had the honor of speaking at the largest gathering of American Muslims in the US at the 15th Annual MAS-ICNA conference. As part of the interfaith symposium, I brought the message from JVP loud […]

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29 Dec, 2016

Remarks by John Kerry, U.S. Secretary of State, on UN Security Council Resolution 2334

Source: US State Department website.

The Dean Acheson Auditorium, Washington, DC, December 28, 2016 SECRETARY KERRY: Thank you very much. Thank you. Thank you very, very much. Thank you. (Coughs.) Excuse me. Thank you for your patience, all of you. For those of you who celebrated Christmas, I hope you had a wonderful Christmas. Happy Chanukah. And to everybody here, […]

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26 Dec, 2016

Iranian inventor develops Braille touchscreen

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 26 Dec 2016 (27 Rabi Al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA TOURISM MALAYSIA HAILS MALAYSIAN WINNER OF “FUNNIEST PERSON […]

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22 Dec, 2016

India’s small businesses facing ‘apocalypse’ – The Guardian

India’s vast informal economy has been reeling since 8 November, the morning after India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, announced the sudden voiding of the country’s two most-used bank notes. It is the largest-scale financial experiment in Indian history: gutting 14 trillion rupees – 86% of the currency in circulation – from the most cash-dependent major […]

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21 Dec, 2016

Tips to deal with technology, and other “concentration killers”

Source: WebMD

Technology may be making the world a more connected place. But being constantly connected can have its downsides. Whether you’re living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or just have trouble focusing from time to time, today’s world is full of concentration killers. In this dispatch reproduced from the WebMD website, Psychologist Lucy Jo Palladino, […]

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19 Dec, 2016

Islamic Information Ministers to chart anti-Islamophobia strategy

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islamfor the week ending 19 December 2016 (19 Rabee’ al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA TOURISM MALAYSIA HAILS MALAYSIAN WINNER OF “FUNNIEST PERSON […]

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16 Dec, 2016

Washington Post columnist openly warns of “Trump’s coming war against Islam”

The Deputy Editorial Page Editor of the Washington Post has sounded a stark warning that the incoming Trump administration is set to trigger a “War against Islam” that could lead to a potentially devastating “civilizational conflict”. In a column published on Dec 11, Jackson Diehl, a 38-year veteran reporter and foreign correspondent of the reputed […]

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15 Dec, 2016

Understanding the Real Importance of the Thailand Halal Assembly 2016

Bangkok – The Thailand Halal Assembly 2016 held between 9-11 December had a special meaning well beyond its overt status as the country’s largest trade show for Muslim-friendly products and services. Against the backdrop of global and regional geopolitics, and the passing of the revered Thai monarch, His Majesty King Bhumibhol Adulyadej, the event showed […]

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12 Dec, 2016

Afghanistan Tourism Mulls Challenges & Opportunities

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 12 December 2016 (13 Rabee’ al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA 1MALAYSIA YEAR-END SALE IS BACK! Grab the […]

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10 Dec, 2016

“Halal Route” app launched in Thailand to facilitate Muslim travellers

Bangkok – The positioning of Thailand as a Muslim-friendly destination has taken another step forward with the launch of a Halal Route app designed to help Muslim business and leisure travellers find tourism products and services suited to their religious and cultural requirements. The app, which can be downloaded here http://halalroute.in.th/, was unveiled at the […]

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5 Dec, 2016

CALL FOR ENTRIES: US$280,00 Saudi award for Environmental Management in Islamic World

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 05 December 2016 (06 Rabi al-Awwal 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA 1MALAYSIA YEAR-END SALE IS BACK! Grab the […]

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29 Nov, 2016

The links between an Australian billionaire and Netanyahu’s family – Haaretz.com

New details have emerged on the ties between Yair Netanyahu, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s son, and Australian billionaire James Packer, a close confidant of the prime minister. It seems that the younger Netanyahu has received more than just a few free nights in Packer’s Tel Aviv apartment, as was reported two weeks ago. Channel 10’s […]

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29 Nov, 2016

UN Security Council Seats Taken by Top Global Arms Exporters

Nine of the world’s top ten arms exporters will sit on the UN Security Council between mid-2016 and mid-2018. The nine include four rotating members — Spain, Ukraine, Italy and the Netherlands — from Europe, as well as the council’s five permanent members — China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States. According to […]

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29 Nov, 2016

California law students take pledge against Israel travel junket

Law students at the University of California, Berkeley say that almost 90 classmates have pledged not to participate in a privately funded free trip to Israel. The trip will be facilitated by a New York City-based Israel advocacy organization that has received funding from the Israeli government. “People said, ‘I wasn’t going anyway, I’m happy […]

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28 Nov, 2016

Iran, Russia To Simplify Visa Issuance for Tour Groups

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 28 November 2016 (28 Safar 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA 1MALAYSIA YEAR-END SALE IS BACK! Grab the best […]

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21 Nov, 2016

Education & Science in OIC Countries 2016 Report Released

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 21 November 2016 (21 Safar 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA 1MALAYSIA YEAR-END SALE IS BACK! Grab the best […]

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18 Nov, 2016

Is Travel & Tourism Ready for the Return of The Ugly American?

Bangkok – In 1963, Hollywood released what has turned out to be a very futuristic, fortuitous film called “The Ugly American.” Based on a 1958 book of the same name, it starred the legendary Marlon Brando as the U.S. ambassador to a fictitious Southeast Asian country named “Sarkan” where a civil war is looming. According […]

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14 Nov, 2016

New Islamic Cultural Centre to be built in Croatia

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islamfor the week ending 14 November 2016 (14 Safar 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA ALITRIP MALAYSIA TOURISM PAVILION SETS TO BOOST TOURIST ARRIVALS […]

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14 Nov, 2016

Creative Korea spreads welcome mat for Muslim businesswomen

Gangneung City, Korea — Korea’s status as a Muslim-friendly destination took giant leap forward with the convening of a high-level Forum of businesswomen from Korea and the Islamic world. Held in this East Coast city of Gangwon province, the 8-9 November event saw a strong turnout of women from Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei, Senegal, Sudan, Spain, […]

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11 Nov, 2016

Jordanian airline takes jab at Trump’s ‘Muslim ban’ in Election Day ad

Jordan’s national airline carrier has posted an advertisement that takes a jab at presidential candidate Donald Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims by offering an Election Day sale of fares to locations in the United States while Muslims are still let into the country. “Just in case he wins…Travel to the US while you’re still allowed […]

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11 Nov, 2016

Arab, Muslim, Jewish rights groups unite to confront Trump’s anti-Muslim agenda

Bangkok – Of all the areas of uncertainty plaguing the incoming Trump Administration, perhaps the most worrisome is the future of its relations with the Islamic world. Given the slew of anti-Muslim statements made by Mr. Trump during his election campaign, and the warm words he has exchanged within days of his victory with two […]

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7 Nov, 2016

Indonesian Univ developing world’s first anti-corruption website

Compiled by Imtiaz Muqbil & Sana Shamsi

A compilation of progressive, positive, inspiring and motivating events and developments in the world of Islam for the week ending 07 November 2016 (07 Safar 1438). Pls click on any of the headlines below to go to the story. ============ A WORD FROM MY SPONSORS: TOURISM MALAYSIA ALITRIP MALAYSIA TOURISM PAVILION SETS TO BOOST TOURIST […]

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3 Nov, 2016

Israeli officer says he made up one of the IDF’s most iconic tales of heroism – Haaretz.com

A senior Israeli army officer who fought in the Yom Kippur War says he made up one of the most famous tales of Israeli heroism in that war, in an effort to boost morale. In a report broadcast Friday night on Channel 2, Israel Defense Forces Brig. Gen. (res.) Yair Nafshi said he concocted the […]

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3 Nov, 2016

To Understand the Value of a Middle East Peace, Visit Jordan

Amman – A multi-million dollar real estate project coming up in the southern Jordanian resort city of Aqaba will create thousands of new jobs in one of the most strategically located countries of the Middle East. It is also well placed to become a symbol of how such projects, and indeed all forms of economic […]

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3 Nov, 2016

How Britain Destroyed the Palestinian Homeland – Ramzy Baroud, Al Jazeera

By Ramzy Baroud When I was a child growing up in a Gaza refugee camp, I looked forward to November 2. On that day, every year, thousands of students and camp residents would descend upon the main square of the camp, carrying Palestinian flags and placards, to denounce the Balfour Declaration. Truthfully, my giddiness then […]

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2 Nov, 2016

Unmatched Visionary Coverage of “Sufficiency Economy” in Travel & Tourism

Bangkok – I am proud to have been crusading since 2000 for the Thai, ASEAN and Asia-Pacific travel & tourism industry to pay more serious attention to the concept of the “Sufficiency Economy”. Regrettably, the industry has shown little interest. The subject is not as “sexy” as the latest social media gadgetry or disruption phenomena, […]

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