Muslims discourage violence - Washington Times
- Muslims discourage violence
By Robert Redding Jr.
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
July 23, 2005
The organizer of a regional, midday-prayer service
yesterday for Muslims hopes that the event encourages
participants, especially youths, to engage in
"productive, meaningful programs to eliminate hatred."
"We must get to our youth before someone else
does," said Imam Mohammed Magid, executive director of
the All Dulles Area Muslim Society Center in Sterling,
Va. "We must respond to their needs and their
questions so that we don't leave room for individuals
with false and dangerous ideologies to lead them
The gathering of about 300 Muslims at the center
in Sterling follows terrorist bombings in London this
month. Muslims claiming to be working with the al
Qaeda terrorist network have taken credit for the July
7 and July 21 attacks. At least 56 persons, including
four suicide bombers, were killed and over 700 injured
on July 7. No casualties were reported in the failed
July 21 bombings.
"We would like to see this notion of suicide
bombing stopped, whether it takes place in Israel,
Palestine, the Middle East or Iraq," Mr. Magid said.
"We would like to give the youth a message of hope, a
message of peace."
Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, director of outreach for
the Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center and Muslim chaplain
of Howard University, who delivered one of three
sermons yesterday talked about Christians and Muslims
working together to combat what he calls "terror
"They know no religion," he said. "They teach
people that the way to express their opinions is by
murder. They have no political agenda. All they are
doing is acting out violence and aggression upon
Imran Siddiqui, who delivered the evening message,
said somebody must reach out to those who think it is
acceptable to take a life and to those who invoke the
name of Islam in their acts.
"That is wrong," he said. "They represent
themselves, not Islam or the majority."
The service coincided with others across the
country that also condemned terrorist attacks,
organizers said. They were also part of an interfaith
effort to bridge chasms between Islam and other
Saad Yacoob, 16, from Sterling, said the
gatherings are useful "in spreading a mass message."
"If all the messages in the world are condemning
the bombing or condemning terrorism at large, then
just about every Muslim will begin condemning
terrorism," he said.
Osman Ali, 15, of Arlington, said such "inhuman
acts" are not a part of Islam.
"This is not representing Islam because Islam is a
religion of peace," he said. "Killing someone is
killing someone. It's an inhuman act."
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