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Indonesia Group Demands Sharia, Caliphate

From those champions of the faith at Al Jazeera:

Members of Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia wave flags during the International Caliphate Conference at Bung Karno Stadium in Jakarta August 12, 2007.

Indonesia group rallies for Sharia

At least 80,000 followers of a Muslim group have filled a stadium in the Indonesian capital calling for the creation of an Islamic state based on Sharia as they prayed and sang.

Hizb ut-Tahrir supporters from Europe, Africa and the Middle East arrived in Jakarta on Sunday for the Sunni group’s biennial meeting at the Bang Karno stadium.

Speeches called for the return to the caliphate, or Islamic statehood, across the Muslim world. The crowd, divided into separate sections for women and men, roared in support as they chanted “Allah is great”.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is estimated to have about one million members.

Muhammad Ismail Yusanto, from Hizb ut-Tahrir, told Al Jazeera that a move away from secularism was needed.

Indonesia has been living under secular ruling since it gained its independence and we have never had anything but misery and poverty. That is why we have been fighting to replace the secular system with an Islamic one.” …

Erni Tri, 40, a high school teacher attending the meeting said she drove for two hours with her husband and three children to join in the prayers, music and speeches.

Hizb ut-Tahrir “is firm and uncompromising toward un-Islamic cultures,” she said.

“It is driven by love for Allah and has no hidden agenda to get votes or power.” …

The group, though radical, claims it does not support violence but is banned in some Southeast Asian and Arab countries

No, of course they eschew violence. Don’t all Muslims?

Do note the careful wording:

Speeches called for the return to the caliphate, or Islamic statehood, across the Muslim world.

Never mind that they want the entire world to be Muslim with the blessings of Sharia law.

Other reports have put the turnout at 100,000, and said it was the “largest gathering of Muslim activists from around the world.”

Even more disturbing is the report that the majority of the participants were women.

Some background on these worthies from Wikipedia:

Hizb ut-Tahrir

… The stated aim of Hizb ut-Tahrir is to unite all Muslim nations in a unitary Islamic state or caliphate, headed by an elected caliph. This it holds is a religious duty, “an obligation that Allah has decreed for the Muslims and commanded them to fulfill. He warned of the punishment awaiting those who neglect this duty.” …

HT does anticipate conflict with non-Muslims or Westernized Muslims, however. In the same article HT literature is quoted saying ‘Islam will naturally be at odds with, or even in conflict with, every other civilisation or ideology’, and that Muslims who champion integration of Islam with Western civilization ‘tend to be weaker-minded Muslims who simply compromise their ways due to what they deem as necessity.” HT preaches that the Western world’s concept of freedom to legislative law through elected parliaments does not exist in Islam; and that Islamic law will be applied.

Some observers doubt the sincerity of HT’s non-violence. According to author Olivier Roy, “the Hizb ut-Tahrir position against the launching of jihad is purely tactical. The organization believes that the time has not yet come for jihad, but that it is a compulsory duty for any Muslim.” The Terrorism Research Center complains that the initial response to the London 7/7 bombings by the website HT 1924.org was not to condemn the killing of civilians, “but to urge British Muslims to be strong in the face of an anticipated backlash.” …

How wonderful.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, August 12th, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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