In the name of God, most Benevolent, most Merciful –
March 22, 2016 – Nusantara Foundation joins our fellow brothers and sisters in humanity in condemning the terror attacks in Turkey and in Belgium. We condemn this tragic event in the strongest possible sense, which took the lives of innocent people. Our prayers and thoughts go out to the victims and their families.
As ISIL claims responsibility for this tragedy, we stand by and encourage law enforcement to get the perpetrators and bring them to justice, holding them accountable to the fullest extent of the law, and continue their fight against terrorism.
Muslims have been victims in both these and other attacks on several different levels: not only were Muslims among those who were killed, but Muslims world-wide have once again been hijacked by terrorists and criminals who carry out evil acts in their faith’s name. As Muslim, we continue to stress that terror is a shared enemy of humanity and civilization, and has no place in any religious teachings. Specifically, the holy book of the Quran condemns such actions by clearly stating: ‘And do not slay the soul [whose life] God has made inviolable…’ (Ch.17: 33); and ‘on that account We ordained for the Children of Isra`il that if any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole humanity: and if anyone saved a life, it would be as if he saved the whole humanity. (Ch. 5:32)
Given that Muslim Americans have faced severe backlash in the past in the wake of similar recent terror attacks, we as Americans, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, are highly concerned by the rhetoric and irresponsible behavior of some of the presidential candidates who are dominating the country’s discourse in the media during this presidential race. We fear that they have intentionally and irresponsibly inflamed the anger of a small yet significant portion of American society, some of whom have already acted violently against Muslims and other ethnic and religious groups in baseless and unjust retaliation.
We must remember that perpetrators of heinous crimes are not limited to members of a particular group or place, but rather can – and do – arise from all socio-ethnic and religious groups. They are often disturbed individuals who have justified their dark intentions and acted accordingly using their own individual reasoning and skewed perceptions. It is the perpetrator who must be held accountable for his actions.
Imam Shamsi Ali