Pope Francis passes Middle East diplomacy test

Watch CBS' latest story on Pope Francis' 3-day trip to the Middle East, a strong Faith Diplomacy initiative that attempts to stabilize the position of the Christian population in the region.

Can learning about the opposing side’s suffering lead to reconciliation? Palestinian Professor Mohammed Dajani believes it can, prompting him to take a group of his students to visit Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.

Longboard? Check. Ray-Bans? Check. iPhone? Check. Hijab? Check and check. By now, you’ve heard of Mipsters, #Mipsterz or Muslim hipsters depending on your preference. We will leave NPR, The Daily Beast and others to examine the impact of this emerging trend on American society. What GlobalPost wants to know is, “how do we become Mipsterz?”

Award-winning singer Yuna is already a star in her native Malaysia, where she has been on the rise since her debut in 2008. She's also an observant Muslim and an entrepreneur. Yuna runs a fashion boutique that sells funky but modest clothes that meet the requirements of her faith. And while she's climbing the American charts with her new album, Nocturnal, she's not compromising her style or her religion.

China's domestic security chief has blamed a Muslim Uighur separatist group for planning a "violent terrorist incident" this week on Beijing's Tiananmen Square that killed five people and injured dozens of others. Meng Jianzhu, a member of the 25-member Politburo with responsibility for domestic security, said Friday that the incident had been organized by the East Turkestan Islamic Movement. The group is based in the northwestern region of Xinjiang.

Muslim fighters holding scores of hostages in the southern Philippines have demanded international mediation, according to a Philippine official. The rebels, angered by a broken peace deal with the government, are using a dozen of the civilian hostages as human shields near the port city of Zamboanga. Troops surrounded the fighters and their hostages in four coastal villages on Wednesday.

Here's a coffee shop in an out-of-the-way part of Baku where the walls are covered with illustrations from an early 20th century satirical magazine called Molla Nasreddin. The magazine represents a bygone era, when Azerbaijan was a font of new cultural trends in the Muslim world, pioneering such issues as female emancipation, anti-clericalism, anti-colonialism and labor rights. Although Azerbaijan was the birthplace of the magazine, arguably the country affected most by its essays and illustrations was Iran.

While the political influence of the Vatican might be limited to public diplomacy, the spiritual influence has great significance for millions of Christians around the world. Consequently, the pope has always had a great impact on global peace and security...Indeed, I hope that Pope Francis will renew the Catholic-Muslim Forum with new energy and commitment to the spirit of the A Common Word Initiative which Pope Benedict XVI helped begin.