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Egypt’s Grand Mufti condemns ISIS—UPDATED

Egypt’s Grand Mufti condemns ISIS—UPDATED September 10, 2014

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Another important Muslim voice joins the chorus of condemnation:

Egypt’s Grand Mufti on Monday condemned the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), saying its horrific actions take it “far from Islam.”

Last week leading Muslim institutions denounced ISIS’s killing Steven Sotloff, the second U.S. journalist to be executed by the jihadist group.

Former Deputy Imam of al-Azhar Sheikh Mahmoud Ashour told Al Arabiya News that Sotloff’s killing was not only against humanity but “there is no religion that accepts the killing of a human soul.”

In the United States, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, published a statement on its website saying: “No words can describe the horror, disgust and sorrow felt by Muslims in America and worldwide at the unconscionable and un-Islamic violence perpetrated by the terror group ISIS. The criminal actions of ISIS are antithetical to the faith of Islam.”

“Our hearts go out to Mr. Sotloff’s loved ones and to all the loved ones of those murdered by ISIS,” CAIR added.

Read the rest. 

 More details: 

ISIS “is carrying out activities which are alien to Islam. They don’t represent Islam in any way,” underlined the mufti. Allam said that only the ulema (Islamic scholars) should have the right to speak in the name of Islam. “Islam needs to reconcile the religious reality and the reality of the modern life. And that is extremely urgent for us,” he said. 

The Egyptian Mufti called for a new form of cooperation and serious dialogue with the West on cultural, economic and political relations, “so we can find a common ground between ourselves.

“We need to accept and respect the differences in our values,” he said.

For a list of other Muslims who have condemned ISIS, click here. 

UPDATED: A protest by Muslims against ISIS is planned for New York City: 

On the eve of the 9/11 anniversary, anticipating that President Obama will use a speech to the nation on Wednesday night to make his case for launching a United States-led offensive against Sunni militants, diverse Muslim American leaders and local community representatives will meet at Judson Memorial to affirm their clear opposition to the violence and brutality of ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

Beginning at 1pm on Wednesday, 10 September, Sunni and Shia leaders will stand on Judson steps (at corner of 239 Thompson Street near Washington Square South in NYC) in solidarity to oppose the ISIS targeting of Shia to deplore attacks on other religious groups. Muslim and multifaith leaders will also express their concerns regarding the impact of increased hostilities, with hate crimes and levels of anti-Muslim sentiment dangerously high here at home.

“Though ISIS claims to be building a caliphate, the vast majority of Muslims reject its claims and its methods, which include visiting violence and cruelty on religious and ethnic minorities in contradiction to established Islamic norms,” stated Rabia Harris of the Muslim Peace Fellowship. “While many Muslims around the world remain critical of US policies, and suffer under repressive governments of their own, violent extremism cannot build up a healthy state or society. I call on today’s leaders to put aside militaristic responses.”

Muslim Americans have been speaking out against terror for many years, but have not been heard by the mainstream media, because people still ask ‘where are the Muslims,’” explained Haris Tarin of Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). “Well we are here. It’s important to accept Muslims as partners for peaceful and positive social action and for us all to work together for a better world.”

Sami Elmansoury of MPAC New York added: “As a young American Muslim, I became more active in the dialogue and counter-narrative space after the tragedy of 9/11. I call on today’s global leaders – political, faith-based, and otherwise – to help alter cyclical conditions and to transcend rhetoric that draws youth to these abhorrent and misrepresentative organizations. I also call on my fellow Muslims around the world to build their societies nonviolently, through dialogue amid difference and through the ballot box, instead of through bullets that only breed cyclical tragedy and global mistrust.”

Meantime, Kim Lawton of the PBS program “Religion & Ethics Newsweekly” posted the image below on FB today with this description:

At a DC news conference, a broad coalition of US Muslim leaders issued a joint statement condemning extremism and #ISIS as “anti-Islamic.” Haris Tarin of the Muslim Public Affairs Council said the brutality of groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda is “an aberration to the face of Islam.”

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