UK & Pakistani clerics issue fatwas, denounce “apostates”
Most Muslim MPs voted for marriage equality. Bravo!
London – 18 February 2013
Muslim MPs who voted for same-sex marriage have since received death threats and fatwas from Islamist extremists and clerics in the UK and Pakistan.
Five Muslim MPs voted in favour of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, two abstained and one voted against.
Mufti Muhammed Aslam Naqshbandi Bandhalevi, imam at the Jamia Islamia Rizvia mosque in Bradford, has issued a fatwa, or ruling, declaring one of the five pro-gay marriage Muslim MPs, Sadiq Khan, an “apostate” and that he should “repent before Allah”, reports the Daily Mail. Mr Khan has received death threats since the parliamentary vote and is now under police protection.
Mufti Muhammad Aslam Naqshbandi of Jamia Islamia Rizvia mosque in Southfield said that Muslims MPs who supported the right of gay couples to marry had put themselves outside of Islam, according to a report by the Pakistan-based newspaper, The News International.
The same paper reports that at least three Pakistani clerics have declared that the MPs were no longer Muslims and they must repent.
Several UK-based Islamist sects have denounced the MPs, including Hizb ut-Tahrir; as have posts on extremist websites such as Islamic Awakening and Izharudeen.com
Peter Tatchell, Director of the human rights organisation, the Peter Tatchell Foundation
“We are delighted that most Muslim MPs voted in favour of legalising gay marriage. The ban on same-sex marriage is discrimination. Discrimination is not an Islamic value.
“The clerics who issued these fatwas are preaching hatred. Islam encourages love and marriage. Religious leaders should welcome the fact that gay couples love each other and want to get married.
“The people making the threats are a tiny extreme Islamist minority. They do not represent most Muslims in Britain.
“Increasingly, gay and Muslim people in the UK are working together to tackle the hatred, discrimination and violence that affects both our communities. We are taking a joint stand against all intolerance.
“There is a huge British gay Muslim population and openly gay Muslim organisations, such as Imaan. They believe it is possible to be both Muslim and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT). The acceptance of gay Muslims by the wider Muslim community is growing; although there is more room for improvement,” said Mr Tatchell.
Sadiq Khan MP explained on his website why he voted in favour of gay marriage:
“I firmly believe in marriage. Marriage is an important statement of love and long-term commitment, and has long been the main way that the state recognises and shows support for loving relationships. I believe that couples who love each other and want to make that long-term commitment to each other should be able to have a civil marriage regardless of their gender or their sexuality.”
Muslim MPs voting record on marriage equality
Muslim MPs who supported same-sex marriage: Rushanara Ali (Labour), Sajid Javid (Conservative), Sadiq Khan (Labour), Shabana Mahmood (Labour) and Anas Sarwar (Labour).
Those who abstained were Khalid Mahmood (Labour) and Yasmin Qureshi (Labour).
The only Muslim MP who voted against was Rehman Chishti (Conservative).
List of Muslim MPs: http://bit.ly/ciKOYm
MPs voting record on Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill: http://bbc.in/WtYQKF