MINNEAPOLIS (Sept. 14, 2012) — Minnesota Muslim leaders today condemned both the killing of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and the attacks on diplomatic facilities and personnel in the Middle East.
“We strongly condemn the killings of the American diplomats in Libya” said CAIR-MN Executive Director Lori Saroya. “We offer our condolences to their families and stand with them in solidarity during this difficult time.”
Minnesota Muslim leaders said that the violence is not in accordance with Islam and does not represent Muslims.
“The Quran teaches us that if you kill one innocent person, it is as sinful as killing all of humanity,” said Northwest Islamic Community Center Vice-President Tamim Saidi. He also referred to a hadith, or tradition: ‘You [Muhammad] do not do evil to those who do evil to you, but you deal with them with forgiveness and kindness.”
“Islam is a religion that calls for spiritual, emotional, and religious maturity,” said Masjid An Nur Imam Makram El-Amin. “It is unacceptable to lash out with violence against those whom we disagree with no matter the subject.”
Minnesota Muslim leaders said that promoting mutual understanding and engaging in dialogue is the best way to respond to anti-Muslim rhetoric.
“Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) entire life is meticulously documented to the minute detail,” said EngageMN Editor Fedwa Wazwaz. “No film or person can change that. His actions speak for himself.”
“I urge my fellow citizens to engage with their families, communities, and houses of worship to address words of bigotry or calls of violence, no matter the reason or religion,” said Islamic Resource Group Outreach and Interfaith Director Zafar Siddiqui. “Fear and anger betray our values as Americans.”
The Minnesota Muslim community is estimated to be at least 150,000.
Signers include: Majed Abusara, President, Al-Aqsa Institute; Ramla Bile, Board Chair, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Minnesota; Makram Elamin, Imam, Masjid an Nur; Hyder Khan, Trustee, Indian American Muslim Council; Shah Khan, President, Islamic Center of Minnesota; Kazim Mehdi, President, Imam Hussein Islamic Center; Sameer Parmar, Outreach Coordinator, Ja’afari Islamic Center; Najam Qureshi, Chairman of the Board, Northwest Islamic Community Center; Mohamed Remtula, President, Anjuman e Asghari Jamaat; Tamim Saidi, Vice-President, Northwest Islamic Community Center; Lori Saroya, Executive Director, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Minnesota; Hashi Shafi, Executive Director, Somali Action Alliance; Zafar Siddiqui, Chairman of the Board, Al-Amal School; Onder Uluyol, President, Islamic Resource Group; Fedwa Wazwaz, Editor, EngageMN.com; And Others.