Friday, October 15, 2010

Canadian imams issue declaration to combat radical Islam


We, the imams who have signed below, hereby affirm and declare the following fundamental points:

1. We believe in the oneness of Allah (God) and in the oneness of humanity and that all the Messengers of God, including the final Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), have taught human beings how to come closer to God and closer to one another. Islam is a religion of nature and humanity, one that teaches that a person cannot be a good Muslim until he/she becomes a good human being. All human beings are equal, and all of them are the children of Adam and Eve (peace be upon them). The best Muslim is the one who is good to his/her family and neighbors and one who avoids harming others with his/her hand or tongue.

2. We believe in peaceful coexistence, dialogue, bridge building, and cooperation among all faiths and people for the common good of humanity. Islam does not permit the killing of innocent people, regardless of their creed, ethnicity, race, or nationality. The sanctity of human life overrides the sanctity of religious laws. Islamic rulings do not – and should not – contradict natural laws. Islam is a religion that promotes peace, justice, equality, dignity, and freedom for all human beings.

3. We believe in the preservation of all the necessities of life. Islam upholds the sanctity of religion, life, intellect, family/society, and property.

4. We believe that the well-being of our fellow citizens is the well-being of Muslims, and that the well-being of Muslims is the well-being of our fellow citizens. Being law-abiding people is part of the Islamic practice, and following the pristine teachings of Islam leads to good citizenship.

5. We believe in gender equity and each man and each woman’s divine right to education, social contribution, work, and treatment with respect and dignity. Men and women complement each other, and healthy relationships between them are essential to a healthy society.

6. We believe that it is the right of every individual adult person to determine for themselves their conduct towards and within their society (for example, in matters of dress or good manners), and their personal conduct in matters of faith and belief as well, as long as their conduct does not threaten the common good. Likewise, we believe that every society must be allowed to express and celebrate humanity's profound cultural diversity, as long as the expression of that diversity does not include the compulsion of any individual to violate their own human rights, or their personal values, or their human nature, or otherwise threaten the common good of all people.

7. We believe and strongly encourage Muslims to seriously engage in civic life and contribute to their communities and society as much as they can.

Imam Dr. Hamid Slimi (Canadian Council of Imams/Faith of Life Network)
Imam Ismail Fetic (Bosnian Islamic Centre of Hamilton)
Imam Dr. Arafat Elashi (Scholar & Lecturer in GTA)
Imam Dr. Ziyad Delic (Canadian Islamic Congress, Ottawa)
Imam Habeeb Ali (Canadian Council of Imams, Secretary)
Imam Abdul Hai Patel (Canadian Council of Imams, Interfaith Relations)
Imam Dr. Mohammad Iqbal Al-Nadvi (Alfalah Islamic Center, Oakville)
Imam Hafiz Faizan-ul Haq (West End Islamic Center, Mississauga)
Imam Yusuf Badat (Islamic Foundation of Toronto)
Imam Omar Subedar (The Islamic Society of Peel, Brampton)
Imam Ashraf Baddar (Faith of Life Network)
Imam Abdullah Hatia (Islamic Association of Saskatchewan, Regina)
Imam Mohamed Arif Desai (Masjid Darul Iman, Markham)
Imam Prof. Abdulvehab Hoxha (Albanian Muslim Society of Toronto)
Imam Sikander Ziad Hashmi (Islamic Centre of Kingston)
Imam Mohamed Nafis Bhayat (Jame Masjid, Mississauga)
Imam Mahomed Iqbal Subrathi (Markaz-ul-Islam Masjid, Edmonton, Alberta)
Imam Anver Moallim (Jami Omar – Ottawa)
Imam Michael AbdurRashid Taylor (Islamic Chaplaincy Services Canada)
Imam Dr. Aly Hindy (Salaheddin Islamic Centre, Toronto)
Imam Tarek Abu Noman Mohammad (Islamic Center of Cambridge)
Imam Zamir Ahmed Chohan (Islamic Foundation of Toronto)
Imam Jamal Hammoud (Muslim Council of Calgary)
Imam Abdul Raaoof Kabar (Muslim Council of Calgary)
Imam Ahmad Abdul Kadir (Muslim Council of Calgary)
Imam Hafiz Asim (Brampton Islamic Centre)
Imam Ahmed Ibrahim (Brampton Muslim Community)
Imam Ahmad Kutty (Islamic Institute of Toronto)
Imam Abdool Hamid Akbar (Islamic Institute of Toronto)
Imam Nedzad Hafizovic (Bosnian Islamic Centre, Toronto)
Imam Shabir Ally (Islamic Information Centre, Toronto)
Imam Ayman Al-Taher (International Muslims Organization of Toronto)
Imam Mohamad Khatib (Muslim World League, Toronto)
Imam Muhammad Kamaruzzaman (Danforth Islamic Centre & Baitul Aman Masjid)
Imam Refaat Mohamed (Barrie Mosque)
Imam Alaa Elsayed (Islamic Centre of Canada-ISNA)
Imam Khaled Alazhari (Ottawa Mosque)
Imam Mohammad J. Qazi (Masjid al-Farooq Islamic Centre, Mississauga)
Imam Mustafa Khattab (Islamic Society of Clemson, SC)
Imam Shafique Ur Rahman (Temple Community Association, Calgary, AB)
Imam Ahmad Shehab (Anatolia Islamic Centre, Mississauga)
Imam Ahmed Limame (Mosquée de Gatineau, QC)
Imam Ibrahim Malabari (Messenger of Mercy International)

More signatures to be added...
# # #

A council of Canadian imams is issuing a declaration Friday that it says represents the world's first nationwide condemnation of radical Islam by the faith's religious leaders.

"People have done many, many condemnations of terrorism but it has never been done well enough or complete enough to get people to pay attention and to say this is a point of sea change," said David Liepert, a spokesman for the Canadian Council of Imams, which is issuing the statement.

"This is us reclaiming Islam from radicals who want to promote conflict and promote violence," he told CNN.
The Council, which comprises 50 influential imams, says its statement - called the Canadian Council of Imams Declaration– will be read in more than 200 mosques across Canada during Friday's afternoon prayers.

"Islam does not permit the killing of innocent people, regardless of their creed, ethnicity, race or nationality," the statement says.

The declaration doesn't mention radicalism or terrorism, but it repeatedly condemns religious violence.

"The sanctity of human life overrides the sanctity of religious laws," it says. "Islamic rulings do not - and should not - contradict natural laws. Islam is a religion that promotes peace, justice, equality, dignity and freedom for all human beings."

"All human beings are equal, and all of them are the children of Adam and Eve (peace be upon them)," another part of the statement reads. "The best Muslim is the one who is good to his/her family and neighbors, and one who avoids harming others with his/her hand or tongue."

The declaration, which comes at the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, is aimed at establishing basic tenets of Islam for Muslim youth and at improving the public image of the religion, Liepert said.
"For Muslims, our religion is always part of the story when one of us does something wrong," he said. "Maybe that's not the way it should be, but it's the way it is."

"We need to take every opportunity we get to denounce terror and violence and their linkages to religion, which are false," he said.

Earlier this year, a Muslim scholar issued a fatwa, or religious ruling, from London saying that suicide bombers are destined for hell.

In March, Muhammad Tahir ul-Qadri criticized Islamic extremists who cite their religion to justify violence, in what one counterterrorism think tank said was "arguably the most comprehensive theological refutation of Islamist terrorism to date."

"We looked at things like a fatwa, but the trouble is it's a limited legal opinion," Liepert said. "We consider this statement almost a constitution for the way Islam is and will be interpreted by Canada."

At a time of rising tensions in the United States between Muslims and other Americans over a proposed Islamic center near New York's ground zero and over proposed mosques elsewhere in the country, Liepert hopes his group's document will provide a roadmap to its southern neighbor.

"This document will show American Muslims that this is the way to go," he said.

But Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said that many American Muslim groups had issued condemnations of Muslim terrorists. He pointed to a 2005 fatwa issued by the Fiqh Council of North America, a U.S. counterpart to the Canadian Council of Imams.


  1. "In March, Muhammad Tahir ul-Qadri criticized Islamic extremists who cite their religion to justify violence,"

    Uh huh,

    "For three days from November 14 to 17, 1985 Dr Qadri presented his arguments continuously before the Federal Sharia Court of Pakistan to determine the quantum of punishment to be awarded to a person guilty of contempt of the finality of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him), an extremely delicate legal matter.

    He established, on evidence from the Quran and Sunna, that a person guilty of contempt of the finality of the Holy Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) deserved death sentence and the punishment will be imposed as Hadd.

    The act of contempt of the finality of the Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) is a crime, which cannot be tolerated whether its commission is direct or indirect, intentional or un-intentional. The crime is so sanguine that even his repentance cannot exempt him from the penalty of death. Dr Qadri placed a massive array of arguments before the learned Court and particularly stressed the point that no lacuna should be allowed in the legal structure of an Islamic state to encourage this form of sacrilege."


  2. PS: If anyone didn't get it, the 'moderate' Dr Tahir ul Qadri is advocating death for Ahmadis and even if Ahmadis 'repent' forgiveness is not possible and death sentence is mandatory.



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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797


We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration ( held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.


Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.