Give Us Our Own Laws, Say Islamic Leaders

John Masanauskas, Telegraph (London), July 11, 2011

Islamic leaders want Muslims in Australia to get interest-free loans for religious reasons.

The nation’s Islamic leaders want recognition of sharia law as it applies to banking practices, according to an exclusive Herald Sun survey of imams.

There was also a call for recognition of sharia law as it applies to family law.

The survey showed some imams are sceptical that Osama bin Laden’s death will be of benefit to ordinary Muslims, and they are unhappy with the way US forces disposed of his body.

The survey has also revealed:

  • STRONG condemnation of MPs who criticise Muslim women for wearing the burqa/nijab.
  • CONCERN that ordinary Muslims are still being linked to terrorism.
  • DISGUST that innocent people in Muslim countries are being killed in the “war on terror”.

The survey was conducted in the wake of a $55,000 Federal Government training program for imams on Australian laws and values.

They have been told to preach core Australian values such as the fair go, freedom, and responsibility.

Imam Yusuf Parker, from the Alhidayah Centre in Perth, said Australia should consider recognising sharia law as it applied to finance and family law matters.

Imam Parker said Islam forbade the charging or paying of interest “so finding interest-free loans will again help Muslims to practise their Islam better”.

“Other than the two major issues mentioned, I don’t see other sharia law that Muslims would seek to have legally recognised,” he said.

Fellow WA imam Sheik Burhaan Mehtar said sharia law often was raised to scare non-Muslims, but a dialogue would lead to better understanding.

“Islamic banking and the non-slavery of humans is a classic example. Interest is slavery,” he said.

Islamic Council of Victoria board member Nazeem Hussain said legal and tax barriers currently prevented local banks from offering Islamic finance products.

“That’s a massive market . . . we’d encourage the Government to seek ways to tap into that market,” he said.

Imam Parker said bin Laden’s demise might serve as closure for those convinced he masterminded the 9/11 attacks.

“But the reality is that the negative impact on Islam and Muslims has not changed, and it will take many decades for that to change,” he said.

Sheik Burhaan Mehtar said the symbolic victory of bin Laden’s death would remain hollow while people in nations such as Afghanistan suffered a “terror of death delivered from the skies” by the US and its allies.

Gold Coast imam Imraan Husain reflected a general view that bin Laden’s burial at sea was a violation of Islamic funeral rites.

Victorian imam Sheik Ramy Najmeddine said Muslims felt there was an unfair link between terrorism and Islam.

“But we believe this is being broken down by the good work that members of both the Muslim and non-Muslim community are doing.”

Sheik Mohamadu Saleem, a spokesman for Board of Imams Victoria, accused some MPs of trying to get political mileage out of the burqa issue. “It is mere political expediency,” he said.

Victorian imam Abdinur Weli said: “If only Muslims are the people who are told what to wear, then it is discrimination.”

Topics:

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • A Comment from Australia

    I have just read all of this tripe and will join the chorus of Australians who are saying “if they are so unhappy here why don’t they just go back to where they came from”

    We have at 2 “Arab” banks offering eretail banking services here in Australia and one of them offers very high interest rates for depositors! Can someone tell me (this question is for real), just where do you get interest free money as the clerics are

    suggesting?

    Now for the real headline re Islamic Law story here at present: Three Muslim men adducted a recent convert to Islam from his home in Sydney’s west and then proceded to give him 40 lashes with a whip made from electrical cord. This was for having an alcoholic drink, punishable under sharia law. Two of those responsible for the whipping are now in police custody without bail and the authorities have made it very clear that this sort of thing will not be tolerated in Australia.

  • Elmer

    I see no problem here at all:

    Australian imams want interest-free loans for Australian Muslims.

    I have also heard the people in H want ice water?

  • Question Diversity

    Islamic leaders want Muslims in Australia to get interest-free loans for religious reasons.

    Minnesota showed the way, Tim Pawlenty agreed with this plan: http://goo.gl/I0GM6

  • Anonymous

    “If only Muslims are the people who are told what to wear, then it is discrimination.”

    Lame comment. EVERYONE is being told what NOT to wear.

  • White Guy In Japan

    Japan has the second lowest interest rate in the world. Virtually zero. Yet I don’t hear Japanese living in Western countries complaining about American interest rates. Funny that.

  • Anonymous

    They should just move to one of those wonderful muslim-run countries, you know the ones, where human life and the freedom of the individual is sacred – then they can practice all the sharia they want.

  • EW

    Taking into account, how the Western civilization is now doing with interest banking and where it got our economy, maybe the Muslims should have a go with their version. It can hardly be worse.

  • Mary

    Why NOT give them interest free loans, they never pay these loans back anyway?

  • Ben

    This is disgusting.

    It is like walking into someone’s home after they’ve given you hospitality and just demanding things from the host.

  • Peejay in Frisco

    If Muslims want interest free loans, then Muslims can be the ones to GIVE them the loans. How does anything financial get done in Muslim nations? Does anyone know?

  • Crawfurdmuir

    Perhaps Australia should give Muslims such benefits of Sharia law as amputation of the right hand for theft, castration for rape, and public beheading for murder, drug trafficking, and other offenses so punished in Saudi Arabia.