Canadian Imams Issue Fatwa Against ISIS, Blame US

38 imams issue Islamic ruling forbidding joining or enabling ISIS, claim US and Canada created group for 'anti-Islam interests.'

Dalit Halevy, Ari Yashar ,

Muslim clerics (illustration)
Muslim clerics (illustration)
Najeh Hashlamoun/Flash 90

A group of 37 Canadian imams and one American imam issued a fatwa (Islamic ruling) on Wednesday, forbidding Muslims from joining or enabling the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist organization.

The fatwa, which was posted on the website of the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada, claims to be the "first formal Fatwa in the world regarding ISIS and its recruitment activities."

In the ruling, the imams said ISIS are "imposters" trying to "deceive Muslims in order to destroy them. Muslims must not trust such individuals or groups."

"A few years ago, ISIS was created by the funding of Western countries to overthrow the Syrian regime," claimed the imams, voicing a conspiracy theory most recently voiced by Iranian officials. "These strangers cannot be trusted. Their claim to establish a 'Caliphate' is very suspicious, and cannot be trusted."

The imams said "ISIS and other terrorists are using the policies of the United States and other Western countries in the Middle East as an excuse to control Muslim sentiments and then use them for their own political and personal gain. In our opinion, these aforementioned terrorist organizations are planted in Muslim countries to serve anti-Islam interests by deceiving Muslims in the name of Islam."

"We, the undersigned Imams, strongly disagree and condemn those policies of the United States, Canada and other Western countries in the Middle East which are completely unjust, based upon Islamophobia, bias and intolerance towards Muslims. ...However, in order to counter the anti-Islam and anti-Muslim efforts, a Muslim cannot choose the path of ISIS or other terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda, Taliban, Boko Haram, Al-Shabab, Al-Nusrah, Lashkar Taiba, Lashkar Jhangwi, etc."

The imams claimed ISIS's acts of brutality do not abide by Islamic law, saying they are not waging "true" jihad holy war.

They went on to forbid joining ISIS, saying doing so "disconnects and disassociates" one from the Muslim nation, and likewise forbid the acts of "any Muslim who helps, facilitates travel, provides funds or encourages a Muslim to join ISIS."

"Such a person will not only be punished by Allah for misguiding Muslims but will also be responsible for the crimes committed by the people he/she has motivated," they wrote.

The fatwa can be viewed here.