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We Must Correct the Image of Islam Damaged By Extremists

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In my dialogue with Europeans, I had to admit that the image of even practising Muslims has been changed in the minds of people not only in the West, but in the Arab world as well.
By Abdul Ilah Jadaa

The savage killing of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff cannot be justified in the name of any prescribed law except the law of the jungle. Such crimes by terrorists of the so-called Islamic State are instrumental in producing a negative image and a grim picture in the minds of people around the world about Muslims, in general, and Muslim countries and organizations, in particular. Such acts do a disservice to the Muslim world and a large number of moderate Muslim countries and stigmatize the image of the religion of Islam which has nothing to do with terrorism, violence, bloodshed and dictatorship.
Are these IS terrorists aware of the offense and damage they are causing to Islam and Muslims? They are inflicting harm not only on themselves and their countries but also on the moderate religion of Islam, which was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), who was the embodiment of the perfection of all noble qualities. Islam is a code of life based on peace and justice. Even the enemies of Islam have certified that this is the true nature of the religion. However, these deviant terrorists do not, even for a moment, think about the magnitude of damage caused by them to the image of Islam and Muslims worldwide.
This is happening at a time when a large number of people in the West have become sympathetic to the cause of the Palestinians, who were savagely attacked by Israeli occupation forces.
We have to strive to remove misgivings about Islam and present its true image, in addition to defending true Muslims in all forums available to us. I have tried my best to present the true image of Islam and its unequivocal position towards these terrorists in my talks with some French and German nationals. However, the reports appearing in Western media about the savage practices of IS terrorists in the name of Islam were instrumental in weakening my arguments.
In my dialogue with these Europeans, I had to admit that the image of even practising Muslims has been changed in the minds of people not only in the West but in the Arab world as well. Bearded Muslims have become a source of fear in airports in some countries. This is the handiwork of Al-Qaeda, IS and other terrorist outfits which have created a negative image of Muslims among people in all parts of the world.
(www.saudigazette.com)

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