COTABATO CITY May 16 (PIA) – Some 300 Ulama (Islamic scholars) from across Mindanao gathered here for a three-day Summit initiated by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) through the region’s Darul Ifta aimed to explore the role and elicit support of Muslim scholars and religious leaders in the fight against terrorism.
Dubbed as “Ulama Summit Against Terrorism” the summit is an initial step of the ARMM government to enlist the support of Islamic scholars to combat terrorism.
Aside from the Ulama, the summit is also being attended by local and regional government leaders, peace advocates, military and police officials, representatives from civil society organizations and the media.
The goals of the said summit is to understand the global context of violent extremism and terrorism, to be appraised of the Philippines security situation particularly on government’s framework and intervention against terrorism, to generate wider appreciation of localized interventions on preventing and countering violent extremisms, and to develop a comprehensive ARMM regional framework against Violent Extremism and Terrorism (VET)
ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman said terrorists misrepresent and misuse the Islamic faith and principles to strengthen their cause and encourage the commission of vicious acts.
“Ginagamit ng terorismo ang Islam para sa kanilang agenda. Ginagamit nila ang Islam para maghikayat ng mga kaanib at kasama upang gumawa ng kriminalidad sa ating rehiyon at sa ating bayan. Dito pumapasok ang mahalagang papel ng ating mga religious leaders, mga Ulama at Aleema. Sila ang mga tapat na alagad ng ating relihiyon, taglay nila ang bukod tanging relasyon sa ating mga kababayan, isang relasyon na hinubog ng pananampalataya na pinagtibay ng panahon. That’s why we urge our Ulama that if we are on the right position, we should move to show what is right and let’s condemn what is wrong,” he said.
Governor Hataman also stressed that Muslim scholars can contribute to the advocacy against terrorism by educating people about the true teaching of Islam most especially on the principles of justice, compassion, peace and harmony.
“Ang laban sa terrorismo ay hindi magtatagumpay sa pamamagitan lamang ng kampanya ng militar. kasabay dapat nito ang malalim at malawak na artikulasyon ng kawastuhan ng Islam bilang relihiyon ng katarungan, pagmamalasakit, pagkakaisa, at kapayapaan.” Hataman said
“Hindi lamang dapat hanggang summit ang ating pagtutulungan, hindi lamang hanggang diskusyon, dapat ang laban na ito ay palaganapin sa bawat sulok ng ating rehiyon at ng ating bansa. Hindi lamang dahil obligasyon natin ito kay ALLAH at sa ating mga kababayan kundi higit sa lahat ito ang dahilan kung bakit nilikha tayo ng Panginoon.” he added.
Executive Director of Darul Ifta , Aleem Abdulmuhmin Mujahid presented the overview on Countering and Preventing Violent Extremism and Terrorism (VET), stressing the supreme mandate of religious leaders which is to prevent and counter Violent Extremism and Terrorism (VET) and he also made clear that VET has no place in Islam nor Islam can justifies VET.
Mujahid’s report showed that the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Muslim World League (MWL) have also conducted summits, conferences, fora and seminars against violence, extremism and terrorism calling on Muslim Ummah; for tolerance, peace and understanding and for unity and solidarity against VET.
As a firm commitment to the joint relentless campaign against threats to national security, the ARMM Ulama Summit issued its manifesto against terrorism declaring that it is HARAM (forbidden and unlawful) to use Islam to justify or legitimatize violent extremism and terrorism; it is incumbent upon us all to reeducate our constituents to rediscover our Islamic faith for justice compassion, harmony and peace; and it is imperative upon us all to cooperation and collaborate with stakeholders in preventing and countering violent extremism and terrorism in its many forms and manifestations. (LTOBolongon/PBChangco/PIA-Cotabato city)