An influential Muslim scholar has issued a global ruling against terrorism and suicide bombing.
Dr Tahir ul-Qadri, from Pakistan, says his 600-page judgement, known as a fatwa, completely dismantles al-Qaeda’s violent ideology.
The scholar describes al-Qaeda as an “old evil with a new name” that has not been sufficiently challenged.
The scholar’s movement is growing in the UK and has attracted the interest of policymakers and security chiefs.
In his religious ruling, delivered in London, Dr Qadri says that Islam forbids the massacre of innocent citizens and suicide bombings.
“They [terrorists] can’t claim that their suicide bombings are martyrdom operations and that they become the heroes of the Muslim Umma [global brotherhood]. No, they become heroes of hellfire, and they are leading towards hellfire,” he said.
CBN News traveled to London to talk with Anjem Choudary, a leading Muslim radical who says Islamic teachings are what shaped his pro-jihad message.
Although both George W. Bush and Barack Obama have declared that Islam is a religion of peace, Choudary begs to differ.
A Religion of Peace?
“You can’t say that Islam is a religion of peace,” Choudary told CBN News. “Because Islam does not mean peace. Islam means submission. So the Muslim is one who submits. There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam.”
Choudary is the leader of Islam4UK, a group recently banned in Britain under the country’s counter-terrorism laws. He wants Islamic Sharia law to rule the United Kingdom and is working to make that dream a reality.
While Islamic radicals in the United States usually prefer to speak in more moderate tones while in public, masking their true agenda, Choudary has no such inhibitions.
He has praised the 9/11 hijackers and has called for the execution of Pope Benedict. He also stirred controversy recently when video emerged of him converting a 10-year-old British boy to Islam.
Dr. Qadri is a Muslim who likes to promote interfaith dialogue and to play down extreme forms of Islam. He concentrates on the social and cultural teachings of Islam, and would like to portray Islam as rational and scientific.
In other words he is Islam’s Rowan Williams and, one presumes, has just about as much influence on the course of Islam as Rowan does on Christianity.