Twenty Imams affiliated with the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada issued a Fatwa (or religious edict) on January 8 declaring that attacks on Canada or the United States by any extremist are an attack on the ten million Muslims living in North America.
The Fatwa is consistent with what I hear from the many Muslim friends and colleagues I have both in the US and abroad. They all condemn violence and feel just as threatened by terrorists as anyone else. Their statements and this latest Fatwa directly answer a question some people have asked: “Why don’t Muslims speak out against terrorism?”
There are several reasons we don’t hear more: Mainstream media finds it more newsworthy to publicize the latest violence than a statement deploring violence. Also, Muslims would no more consider terrorism done in the name of Islam to represent their religion than would Christians consider the Oklahoma City bombings to represent Christianity. The first response of either might be “Of course it’s wrong! How could it be my religion? Why do I need to say anything at all?”
Based on the Qur’an, the Fatwa says in part,
Muslims in Canada and the United States have complete freedom to practice Islam…In many cases, Muslims have more freedom to practice Islam here … than in many Muslim countries.
In fact, the constitutions of the United States and Canada are very close to the Islamic guiding principles of human rights and freedom. There is no conflict between the Islamic values of freedom and justice and the Canadian/US values of freedom and justice.
Therefore, any attack on Canada and the United States is an attack on the freedom of Canadian and American Muslims…[and on] thousands of mosques across North America. It is a duty of every Canadian and American Muslim to safeguard Canada and the USA. They must expose any person, Muslim OR non-Muslim, who would cause harm to fellow Canadians OR Americans.
May Allah save Canada, the United States and the entire world from the evil of wrong doers. Ameen.