Shocked at arrests of suspects on suspicion of terror activities

2016-07-13 17:13

The arrests of suspects in Azaadville and Newclare on suspicion of terror activities has conclusively proven that the South African security and intelligence services seriously take security threats to our country and values the lives of our people. I must admit I am truly and totally shocked to hear about the arrests. (Hawks nab terrorist suspects, News24, July 10)

Muslims in South Africa and their organisations at different intervals in the past have condemned terrorism, terrorist’s organisations and their violent behaviour and do not condone any activities that either perpetrate or support and aids acts of terror. These allegations around the arrests need to be thoroughly investigated without prejudice and the alleged offenders must be prosecuted if found guilty by a court of law. Muslims in South Africa are a small conservative community and these arrests must not give the impression or perception to other citizens that every Muslim is a terrorist and want to bomb shopping malls, institutions and other public places. We really as a country cannot afford to give ammunition to Islamaphobes, hate and fear mongers. Therefore, it’s important that these arrests be thoroughly investigated and the outcome be publicly made known.

Moulana Ebrahim Bham of the Jamiatul Ulama South Africa (Council of Muslim Theologians) said in a statement that the investigations, as well as the judicial process around these raids must take their due course, in order to reach their logical conclusion, “without prejudice”. “At the same time, we appeal to the media not to sensationalise these developments in a manner that has potential to fuel speculation and communal tension.”

The self-proclaimed caliphate by Abubaker al Baghdadi and his sycophants or minions is not Islamic. Many analysts and religious scholars believe to claim that Isis is Islamic is grossly and egregiously inaccurate and insulting to Islam’s non-violent devotees around the globe. Religions are not violent and do not promote violence, its misguided followers and people are violent. By giving Isis religious legitimacy provides its supporters the tools to recruit more members. Many individual Muslims, organisations and scholars have appealed to news outlets, journalists and government officials to avoid using the term “Islamic State” to describe Isis, since doing so gives it the legitimacy of Muslim and Islam.

Many Muslim scholars and groups in South Africa and around the globe have fearlessly, vociferously and repeatedly denounced Isis as un-Islamic. To Muslims, Isis is an abnormality, a deviation; claiming to be Islamic but misrepresenting Islam’s core values, teachings and principles. Most Muslims are deeply ashamed of their misguided co-religionists who have joined terror groups like Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab, Isis or Daesh (the Arabic acronym for al-dawla al-islamiyya bil iraq wal-sham).

No mainstream Muslim organisations or Muslim consider Isis Islamic. Truly, there can be no justification for labeling an entire religion as violent merely because some of its misguided followers embrace or perpetuate violence.

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