Imam Talib Shareef, leader of The Nation’s Mosque, Masjid Muhammad, located in Washington, D.C. released the following statement in response to the recent reports on the murder of American Journalist Steven Sotloff:
Pending authentication in the wake of yet another horrific killing by the criminal terrorists group ISIL, we extend our heartfelt prayers and condolences to the family of Steven Sotloff and commend his life of service and sacrifice for humanity. We join the world in strongly condemning ISIL for the inhumane, barbaric, cowardly murder of innocent life and their countless acts of extreme violence against humanity.
We continue to be outraged and troubled by senseless acts that do not uplift or bring peace to our souls and lives collectively. The world of the civilized has an obligation to neutralize the uncivilized and the Arab and Muslim nations should be among the first to respond. The inhumane actions of ISIL have no place in human space. Their actions are far from humane and far from Islamic as they are not the actions of Muslims. They are killing
innocent human life, people of faith, Christians and numerous Muslims. They are not the followers of Prophet Muhammad (saw) who taught and lived that we are never to the take the life of the innocent, not even the life of a COMBATANT prisoner, such as the Lebanese Muslim Soldier Ali Al-Sayeed, so certainly not the life of an
Our prophet taught that we are to respect and protect religious freedom, protect the life and houses of worship for Christians, Jews, and others, that we are to always seek peace over aggression and never be the aggressor, and that we are not to let the hatred of others cause us to swerve from just behavior to criminal behavior. The Holy Qur’an states: O ye who believe! Be upright firmly for Allah (G-d), as witnesses to equity and justice, and let not the enmity and hatred of others cause you to result to criminal behavior and depart from justice. Be just: that is close to G-d. and fear Allah. For Allah is well-aware of what you do.
Any person, no matter how desperate their situation, no matter how much their hearts are paining because of wrong that has been done to them, whether real or perceived, there is no justification for them to make innocent people the target of their terror or the target of their violent inhumane acts. ISIL have killed their innocent good healthy human sentiments and have become hard and insensitive for and toward humanity. They have lost both, their human identity and their religious identity, with the worst being to lose our common identity, the human identity and behave as cruel beasts devouring human life and property.
As Muslims, we have a responsibility to exhibit the best of our human and religious identity, and to follow the examples of Prophets Muhammad (saw), Abraham, Moses, Jesus Christ, etc, peace be upon all of them.