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33 qalam mufti


We are heartbroken and deeply saddened by the series of explosions that happened in several locations in Sri Lanka namely the Kochikade Church, Katuwapitiya Church, Shangri-La Hotel, Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Kingsbury Hotel and St Barnabas Church in Batticaloa, Colombo. The report on 22nd April 2019 recorded 290 casualties for this tragedy. The police spokesperson issued a statement reporting a total of 500 people are injured compared to the reported 450 people before. [1]

We offer our condolences from the bottom of our hearts to the churchgoers, hotel owners, family and friends of all the victims who are involved in this incident and to the Sri Lankan government as well as all Christians in general who are facing this critical and hard situation.

According to the report that we received through the media, until the time of our writing, no one have claimed responsibility nor did anyone proven to be the one responsible behind the series of bombings targeting Christians who are celebrating their Easter celebration. We urge the public not to accuse anyone and continue to offer our prayers, so that the Sri Lankan authorities will succeed in their effort to arrest and punish the criminal in the court of law. Whoever may be responsible for this incident has commit a great abuse and injustice.

Support Towards the Statement of Yang Dipertuan Agong

We fully support the statement of Yang Dipertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah which condemns this criminal act:

Seri Paduka offer His utmost condolences and sympathy to the victims of the inhumane and uncivilized act, targeting innocent lives who are celebrating their Easter celebration, where the Christians assembled to offer their prayers during the celebration.

The Royal Highness also supports the solidarity of Malaysians with the victims, their families and the citizens of Sri Lanka.

His Highness al-Sultan Abdullah is certain that the citizens of Sri Lanka will be patient and defend the strength and humanity while facing this tragic and horrible incident.” [2]

The Statement from Syeikh al-Azhar, Grand Mufti of Egypt

Here we include the summary of the statement of Syeikh al-Azhar Imam al-Akbar Prof. Dr. Ahmad Tayyeb:

We cannot begin to describe the character of such a human who could target and focus an attack against a peaceful group of people on their day of celebration. He added in his al-Azhar al-Syarif Facebook account, issuing a statement on Sunday morning, stating that the extremists’ actions are a contradiction to the nature of humans and the values of all religions. Hence, we ask the victims to have patience and pray for the recovery for those who are injured.” [3]

We also support the statement of the Grand Mufti of Egypt Prof Dr. Syauqi Ibrahim ‘Allam that states the act of destroying the house of worship and shedding of blood is prohibited in all religions, for it leads to hatred and fitnah in society that could ultimately lead to civil war in a country.

He offers supplication for the citizens of Sri Lanka and will give his full cooperation to the Sri Lankan authorities to arrest the one responsible for the incident, and will stand united in facing the threat of extremism and terrorism. [4]

Honouring the House of Worship of Other Religion

The term church in fiqh is known as al-kanisah. There are some scholars who define al-kanisah as the house of worship for the Christians and Jews, but Syeikh al-Islam Zakariyya al-Ansari specified it as the house of worship for Christians. (Refer Al-Mausu’ah al-Fiqhiyyah al-Kuwaitiyyah, 38/148 and Hasyiyah al-Jamal, 5/223).

Islam is a religion of love and tolerance. Honouring the house of worship of other religion is a commandment recorded in the Quran through Allah SWT’s words:

وَلَوْلَا دَفْعُ اللَّـهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُم بِبَعْضٍ لَّهُدِّمَتْ صَوَامِعُ وَبِيَعٌ وَصَلَوَاتٌ وَمَسَاجِدُ يُذْكَرُ فِيهَا اسْمُ اللَّـهِ كَثِيرًا ۗ

“And were it not that Allah checks the people, some by means of others, there would have been demolished monasteries, churches, synagogues, and mosques in which the name of Allah is much mentioned.”

Surah al-Hajj (40)

Furthermore, there is a narration where Caliph Umar bin Abdul Aziz wrote a letter to his army stating:

أَلاَّ يَهْدِمُوا بِيعَةً وَلاَ كَنِيسَةً وَلاَ بَيْتَ نَارٍ

Do not destroy the synagogues of the Jews, the Christians’ church and the house of worship of the Majus (fire worshipper).” (Refer Al-Mausu'ah Al-Kuwaitiyyah 7/129, Fath al-Qadir 5/300, Ibn Abidin 3/263, Mughni al-Muhtaj 4/254, Asna al-Matolib 4/220 and Hasyiyah Qalyubi 4/234-235).

Hence, the act of bombing of churches that happened recently is not a part of Islamic teaching. It is a horrible act that contradicts the teaching of any religion in existence and the morals of a rational human who will surely condemn of such an act.

Statement from the Mufti of Federal Territories

Indeed, in life everyone in any society regardless of religion would want peace, love and harmony. Islam holds a specific opinion regarding the people of the book who are residing in Muslim countries and otherwise. The important thing is, the Quran uses a specific way of calling the people of the book with phrases such as “O, people of the book,” or “O people who are given the book,”. This clearly shows that they are originally from the family of Abrahamic faith.

Dr. Yusuf al-Qaradhawi said:

“Thus, they (the people of the book) and the Muslims are affiliated in regards to the original belief; which is the religion that is revealed from Allah SWT to all the prophets, as mentioned in the Quran:

شَرَعَ لَكُم مِّنَ الدِّينِ مَا وَصَّىٰ بِهِ نُوحًا وَالَّذِي أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْكَ وَمَا وَصَّيْنَا بِهِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَمُوسَىٰ وَعِيسَىٰ ۖ أَنْ أَقِيمُوا الدِّينَ وَلَا تَتَفَرَّقُوا فِيهِ ۚ

“He has ordained for you of religion what He enjoined upon Noah and that which We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], and what We enjoined upon Abraham and Moses and Jesus - to establish the religion and not be divided therein.”

Surah al-Syura (13)

It is a commandment upon every Muslim to believe in all the holy books revealed from Allah SWT without any exceptions, where their belief and faith is incomplete if they do not believe in the entirety of what has been revealed in the Quran. (Refer Halal dan Haram dalam Islam (Halal and Haram in Islam), pg. 643)

We would like to emphasize that this attack is a catastrophe, disaster and crime which is a contradiction to the norm of a rational human. Love and respect have disappeared from their lives which is a result of the hardening of their own hearts (qaswatul qalb). This in turn destroys their humanity (insaniyyatul insan), while Islam’s true teaching is to practise compassion towards everyone.

Lastly, we pray to Allah SWT to bless the family of the victims with patience and for the recovery of the injured. May this dark cloud pass and be replace with light of peace and harmony. Please accept our deepest sympathy and condolences, to all the Christians.

Akhukum fillah,

His Eminence Dato' Seri Dr. Zulkifli bin Mohamad al-Bakri

Mufti Wilayah Persekutuan

23 April 2019





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