The Union of Students in Ireland has praised the Irish Muslim leaders who made an anti-extremism declaration in Trinity College. USI said extremism is most damaging to the young and impressionable, and violence in the name of religion has cast a negative shadow and false stereotype on peaceful Muslims.
“The discrimination and stereotypes faced by foreign nationals and Muslims because of extremists is unfair, unjust and largely unfounded, as can be seen in shocking documentaries like RTE’s I Am Immigrant” Kevin Donoghue, USI President, said. “Ireland will only be in a position to tackle this kind of extremism if we become a more tolerant society. One of the ways we can do that is by accepting more refugees affected by these kinds of conflicts. The actions of a tiny majority have cast a terrible shadow over the lives of the vast majority of Muslims. The Union of Students in Ireland is applauding the Irish Muslim leaders for their anti-extremism declaration. Extremism is most damaging to the young, impressionable and those most susceptible to being morally misdirected. It is a shame that the Muslim leaders feel the need to speak out against extremism and violence, to disassociate themselves from it and to guide Muslims in a different, peaceful direction.”
The Muslim anti-extremism declaration was drawn up to ensure that all visiting Islamic speakers to Ireland preach in a respectful and peaceful way. The declaration was officially launched at Trinity College last Thursday, and was signed by Muslim speaker Shaykh Fakhruddin Owaisi, chairman of the Council of Sunni Imams in Cape Town. Shaykh Dr Umar Al-Qadri, chairman of the Irish Muslim Peace and Integration Council (Impic) and Shaykh Owaisi were speakers at the Trinity college seminar ‘Preventing radicalisation within the Muslim community’ held to coincide with the launch of the declaration.
The anti-extremist declaration was drawn up by Impic and it states: “I unequivocally reject, disown and condemn all terrorism committed in the name of Islam by any militant group . . . I believe that terrorism is never a legitimate and honourable act of war, but is always a cowardly act of indiscriminate murder. I believe that the sanctity of human life overrides the sanctity of religious laws.”