Source: The Times of Malta, Friday, January 9, 2015, by Kurt Sansone
Muslim leaders in Malta have condemned the killing of French journalists, describing the act as a crime against freedom of expression and Islam.
Imam Mohammad Elsadi and Laiq Ahmed Atif, president of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community, yesterday expressed solidarity with the French people.
“We categorically condemn this criminal attack irrespective of the identity of the perpetrators, their ideology or their motives… At this difficult time we express our full solidarity and sympathy with the French people against all kinds of extremism and terrorism,” Mr Elsadi said.
He described the storming of the offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo as a “terror attack” and “an insult” to the prophet Mohammad and the teachings of Islam.
Mr Elsadi said reverence to Mohammad was not expressed through violence and bloodshed but by showing the true values of respect for the sanctity of human life.
“This cowardly attack is against Islam and Muslims because it damages the image of Islam, fuels Islamophobia, hatred and injustice against the peaceful innocent mainstream Muslims,” Mr Elsadi said.
He insisted the “heinous assault” was a blow to the good relations between the French people and the Islamic world. Unfortunately, it took place after the French government supported the recent Palestinian bid at the UN Security Council to end the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian lands, he added.
Muslim leaders express solidarity with French after shootings in Paris
The killing of 12 people, including two police officers, in Wednesday’s attack on Charlie Hebdo caused worldwide shock. As France yesterday mourned the victims, in yet another incident, a police officer was shot dead in Paris. It was unclear whether this incident was related to the Hebdo shooting.
Mr Atif said the Islamic community’s thoughts and prayers were with the victims and all those affected by the “evil and outrageous attack”.
“These terrorists and extremists hijacked Islam, the religion of peace, for their personal agenda and interests through committing vicious atrocities,” he said. Islam did not teach terrorism and provided no justification for any act of violence, he added. Read More: