“Radical Islam” undermining Maldivian civil rights: Helios Life Association

“The growing political and institutional influence of radical Islamic groups has undermined the Maldives’ progress towards realisation of rights guaranteed under [The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR)]”, according to a report compiled by the Helios Life Association (HLA) NGO.

The claims were made in a report entitled: “Maldives: Sudden Reversals in the Implementation of ICCPR Commitments”, which alleges an “alarming increase” in the violation of human rights outlined within the ICCPR that was adopted by the Maldives back in December 2006.

The report by HLA – a non-profit NGO from Switzerland- will be among several documents submitted to a hearing of the UN Human Rights Committee (UNHRC) in Geneva on Thursday (July 12).

The UNHRC has already identified key issues to be taken up with the Maldives concerning its commitments to the ICCPR. A document outlining these issues – drawn from the country’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) (with submissions from government, HRCM and civil society), was published in August 2011 – prior to the controversial change of government and fresh allegations of police brutality and attacks on journalists.

The government of President Dr Mohamed Waheed Hassan, which came to power through a controversial transfer of power on February 7, responded to the list of issues earlier this month, ahead of its session with the committee this week.

Representatives of the Waheed administration including  Home Minister Dr Mohamed Jameel , State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dunya Maumoon and the Maldives’ Permanent Representative in Geneva, Iruthisham Adam, will be present during Thursday’s session to discuss the country’s human rights commitments.

ICCPR in the Maldives

In discussing the role of the ICCPR and human rights issues in the Maldives, the HLA report said that a new constitution adopted in the country on August 8, 2008, paved the way to implement “most of the rights” outlined in the covenant.

However, the report did note some exceptions to the ICCPR, including sections of Article 18, – “Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion” – that it alleged had directly impacted a number of other articles in the covenant.

“The fall of the old autocratic regime following the first free and fair elections in the Maldives in October 2008, provided a further boost in the observation of the rights protected under the Covenant,” the report claimed. “An example of this was the agreement during the Maldives’ Universal Periodic Review (UPR) to address a number of concerns relating to non‐compliance with Article 18.”

In responding to issues raised with the UN on the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, the Maldives government said that “the reservation states that the application of the principles set out in article 18 will be without prejudice to the Constitution of the Maldives. Chapter II of the Constitution on fundamental rights and freedoms does not include, among the rights guaranteed, freedom of thought, conscience and religion.”

The HLA report also highlighted “concerns relating to the competence, independence and impartiality of the judiciary,” an issue central to the events leading up to February’s transfer of power following the controversial detention of a serving Criminal Court Chief Judge. The detention saw former President Mohamed Nasheed’s government criticised around the world.

December 23

Drawing attention to what the report called the “institutional influence of radical Islamic groups”, HLA claimed that the law on Religious Unity, implemented back in September 2011 under the Nasheed administration, had impinged on parts of Article 19 of the ICCPR relating to human expression.

“This growing radicalisation resulted in the creation of a coalition of political parties in December, called the 23rd December Coalition for the Defence of Islam. As well as extremist religious elements, the 23rd December Coalition comprised of a range of political groups and individuals linked to the country’s former autocratic leader, Mr Maumoon Abdul Gayoom,” the findings added.

“The Coalition had been formed in direct opposition to the observance of international human rights law, particularly to the undertaking given at the UPR process that a national debate will be held on ending forms of punishment not consistent with Article 7.”

HLA also drew attention to the visit of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay to the Maldives and calls she made for debate on the issue of public floggings, particularly for women. The calls were derided by the December 23 coalition at the time.

“The [December 23] Coalition proceeded to carry out a coup d’etat on February 7, which was executed by elements of the army and police loyal to Mr Gayoom, his close allies and former members of his government, and other parts of the 23rd December Coalition, following a call by the then Vice‐President, Dr. Mohamed Waheed, to ‘defend Islam and the Constitution’”, the report alleged.

“The coup saw elements of the police and army threaten the Maldives’ first democratically‐elected President, Mr Mohamed Nasheed, his family and colleagues from the ruling Maldives Democratic Party (MDP), with physical harm or worse unless he resign by a certain time.”

Dr Waheed has always denied accusations that his coalition unity government came to power illegally, claiming his appointment to the presidency was constitutionally mandated upon the resignation of former President Mohamed Nasheed.

Shortly after his resignation, Nasheed contended that he had been forced to resign under duress – calling for fresh elections.

“Undue control”

Since February’s transfer of power, the report added that former opposition parties involved in demonstrations and activities associated with the December 23 movement were now part of the coalition government, while only one major political party in the form of the MDP stood as opposition in parliament.

HLA’s findings alleged that the coalition now exercised “undue control” over the national judiciary, whilst occupying the executive and holding a combined parliamentary majority in the People’s Majlis.

“It also asserts undue influence over over‐sight bodies such as the Human Rights Commission (HRCM), the Police Integrity Commission and the Anti‐Corruption Commission (ACC). Consequently, the opposition and its supporters find themselves victimised without proper recourse to redress,” the report claimed.

HLA claimed that a “significant rise” in political violence had also followed the transfer of power amidst accusations that law enforcement agencies were not investigating crimes by bodies of gangs linked to government-aligned politicians, focusing instead on potential felonies committed by opposition figures.

“The perpetrators of these violent crimes remain at large whilst the courts are filled with political protesters who face criminal charges,” the report added.

Public order

In looking at the present government’s commitments to freedom of assembly, freedom of speech and freedom of expression, the report noted that “legitimate public order concerns”  regarding ongoing demonstrations had been raised during a series of All Party Talks that last convened back in June. However, HLA claimed that a number of other issues raised during the talks appeared to target negating certain “fundamental rights” in this regard.

“It has become routine, once again, for the president and senior members of the government to equate dissent with terrorism, as in numerous public speeches made by the president,” the report stated.

HLA added that allegations of torture as well inhuman or degrading treatment were also on the increase following February’s political upheavals, pointing to claims made by female anti-government protesters.

As well as the use of high power water canons by police during March 2012, allegations were also raised by that some women had been sexually molested or suffered other “degrading punishments” following arrest in the first few months following the transfer of power.

The allegations in the report were based on testimonies from several women aged between 22 and 49 years of age.

Meanwhile, HLA’s findings claimed that the issue of debating flogging, a practice also conducted during Nasheed’s administration, had been deemed by MPs, the judiciary, local NGOs and representatives of the former government as “unconstitutional”.

“On November 25, 2011, the Chief Justice himself publicly rejected a call to implement the commitment given during UPR with regard to ending flogging as a form of punishment,” the report claimed.

The present government has responded that, while corporal punishment was not explicitly prescribed in the penal code, it was administered for “certain offences prescribed in Sharia.”

“The government is, however, looking at ways to ensure that the punishment is not applied in a discriminatory manner. At present, women are far more likely to be publicly flogged than men – mostly because of outdated court procedures such as reliance on confessions rather than forensic evidence – though as noted above this is changing,” the Waheed administration stated in its official response to the UN.

Arbitrary arrest

Considering Article 9 of the ICCPR, which relates to “liberty and security of person” and the prevention of arbitrary arrest or detention, the report also discussed the actions of the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) under the Nasheed administration to seize Criminal Court Chief Judge Abdullah Mohamed.

The detention, which the the government claimed had been made over concerns about “national security” owing to allegations that Judge Abdullah was involved in perjury and “blatant collusion” with the previous administration, was widely criticised by international bodies at the time.

Since February, the HLA claimed that some 400 protesters had reportedly been “arbitrarily detained”.

“There is serious concern that nearly everyone who has been charged is facing fabricated charges. A pattern has developed whereby people are arrested without any explanation being given as to the grounds of their detention,” the report claimed. “They are then asked to provide a urine sample and accused of having taken drugs or drunk alcohol. They are also often presented with a pre‐prepared confession and asked to sign it. All of this takes place while the detainees are denied access to a lawyer. “


HLA also stressed concerns over a “lack of independence and professionalism” within the country’s judiciary, which was claimed to be setting back the country’s obligations under the ICCPR.

Along with criticisms of the effectiveness of watchdog body, the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) – particularly in the regards to Criminal Court Chief Judge Adbullah Mohamed – the capacity of the country’s Supreme Court was also questioned.

“The Supreme Court of Maldives consists of seven judges. Six of whom, including the chief justice, are only trained in sharia law,” stated the report. “They do not have a well‐grounded understanding of international human rights law. They have articulated positions that are contrary to the fundamental rights guaranteed under the ICCPR.”

“Religious hatred”

HLA alleged that there had also been an increase in the reporting and incitement of acts of “religious hatred” including anti-Semitism.

The NGO’s report pointed to incidents including attacks on participants of a silent protest calling for religious freedom in December 2011. One of the participants attacked in December, Prominent Maldivian blogger and journalist Ismail ‘Hilath’ Rasheed, was stabbed in the neck just last month before fleeing the country after partly recovering from his injures. He later alleged the attack was the work of Islamic radicals.

HLA also singled out the publication of a pamphlet by the Dhivehi Qaumee Party (DQP), whose members now hold some senior government positions, entitled: “President Nasheed’s devious plot to destroy the Islamic faith of Maldivians” and an attack on pre-Islamic period Maldivian artefacts in a Male’ museum as further examples of the spread of religious hatred.

“In January 2012, efforts by the police to investigate incitement to religious hatred were blocked by the Chief Judge of the Criminal Court Abdulla Mohamed, triggering a sequence of events that resulted in the displacement of the elected government by the members of the December Coalition in a coup d’etat,” the report added.

Media freedom

Helios reported that despite a period of “relative improvement” in the right to freedom of expression in the country, there were concerns that such developments had been set back in recent months.

“After a period of relative improvement in the right to freedom of expression, there has been serious retraction in this regard in recent months. Subsequent to the coup, there has been harassment of journalists and media outlets that criticise the new Government,” the report alleged. “This has led the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to freedom of expression to place the Maldives on his watch-list of countries where there has been a rise in harassment and attacks against journalists.”

Aside from reports of sections of the police and military seizing and re-branding state television and radio on February 7 without any judicial warrant, concerns were also raised that artists, musicians and users of social networking websites allegedly continue to face threats from law enforcement authorities for expressing dissent against the government, the report added.

“The president, speaking on 24 February 2012, branded those who ‘defame the Government’ as ‘traitors’. His Press Secretary, Mr Abbas Adil Riza, has condemned on several occasions those who have called for international sanctions on regime leaders,” the report claimed.

HLA also raised issue with claims that the Ministry of Education back in March issued a “compulsory directive” for curriculum textbooks to class the transfer of power as a legitimate act – without the conclusion of a Commission of National Inquiry (CNI) set up by the government to probe the circumstances of February 7.

The Waheed administration has nonetheless denied the harassment and intimidation of journalists. Instead, it contended that “media freedom has remained steady with the constitution protecting freedom of expression but also restricting freedom of speech contrary to the tenets of Islam.”

While the government blocked websites controversial to Islam, it “is working to ensure the media is free to tackle any subject. It was by the current administration of President Dr Waheed Hassan who took office in February 2012 that Maldives National Broadcasting Corporation was handed over to the Parliament-created Maldives Broadcasting Corporation that had ended executive control of the media.”


22 thoughts on ““Radical Islam” undermining Maldivian civil rights: Helios Life Association”

  1. Isn't nasheeds party MDP harbouring the notorious religious preacher Fareed? Mdp has been protecting him since 2005 n continues to do so..during nasheeds presidency he was able to get centre stage for advocating child marriages, denial of vaccination n medication for infants and he gave a famous speech in which he said a quarter of wOmen are destined to go to hell! Then MDP continues Hussein Rasheed ('sheikh') who during nasheeds presidency was appointed as state minister for education n who lobbyed to influence schools to stop music singing n art n to remove them from curriculum!!! To me MDP is all about hypocracy esp when it comes tO religion..they support n harbour the biggest extremists in the country n yet lable the current govt of being backed by extremists as it's a sexy story to sell to intl media n Possibly the diplomatic community !!! In 2011 during nasheeds presidency he arrested a human rights campaigner calling for religious freedom n detained him..this is the president who claims to champion democracy here..he has shown only hypocracy instead!!!

  2. This is true. I don't know why people keep ignoring it. Nasheed govt pretended to control the radicals but failed to do so. This govt is openly supporting the radicals. Soon we will be another Afghanistan. Talibanisation of Maldives will be upon us before we know it.

  3. RAdical islam here? OMG! I am sure these NGO guys are using dope! If we have anything here its radical agnosticism.

    NGOs are just another name for small time fraudsters to swindle govts. And this swiss NGO just proved their worth by making this slander against Maldives.

    Even if it were true, what is all the fuss about? Do we have any problem anywhere in the world with radical Judaism or radical Christianity, or radical hinduism? why is it a problem when its radical Islam?

    So here is the decision. As long as Minivan and MDP promote the anti islam agenda you won't get my vote.

  4. Only few of the Maldivians are "Real Muslims" the rest belongs to extremists....

  5. this article is very much biased.

    1. Human rights . This had been ignored through Mauomon regime and then again Nasheed followed the same. Human rights were given only to MDP members and rest of the people were treated as dogs in this country,
    2. Autocratic regime should be of more Nasheed regime where he had brought all the power under his arms.
    3. Flogging can not be considered as human rights. In western world, why it is fine to excessive power " as part of interrogating technique".
    4. If the report is true as mentioned in this article, then for sure report had mislead information which i doubt will be the case for a responsible NGO like ICCPR.
    5. ICCPR report had also included the human right violation happened prior this government too where the write had completely ignored to mentioned here in this article.
    6. 23rd Dec. had to happened due to continuous breach of constitution by Nasheed and his autocratic policies .
    7. Arbitrary arrest : This is a continuation of Mauomoon policy and Nasheed had done during his regime too. Nasheed use different excuses to arrest people like Yameen, Gaasim and Chief Judge etc. No difference to Gayyoom.
    8. Media freedom. During Nasheed time the media was constantly attacked for not spreading Nasheed's prpganada and only MNBC which was the propaganda machines was given freedom. MNBC never gave any opposition party to have thier voice through the channel and but only MDP propaganda. Does this called a free media.

  6. Are these Wahhabis and Salafists actually muslims. Just like Golhaabo this Wahhab religios tool to gain power and wealth to his family. You find so many similar people like Fahari Imran, Shaheem and so many Ali Rameez doing the same thing

    The founder of Wahhabism was Muhammad ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab of Banu Tamim
    tribe. He was born in Uyaina village near Huraimila town in the Najd
    Desert in 1111 and died 1206(1792). Formerly, with the idea of
    travelling and trading, he went to Basra , Baghdad, Iran, India and
    Damascus, where he won the name "Shaikh an-Najdi" because of his
    clever and defeatist attitude. He saw and learnt a great deal at
    these places and set his heart on the idea of becoming a chief. He had
    thought it proper a to found a new religious reformation and movement
    to reach his goal , and, in preparation for this goal, attended the
    lectures of the Hanbali 'ulama' in the blessed city of Medina and
    later in Damascus for some time. When he went back to the Najid, he
    wrote pamphlets on religious subjects for villagers. His harmful,
    heretical ideas which he took from Mu'tazila and other bid'a-groups
    and introduced in these small books deceived many ignorant villagers,
    particularly the inhabitants of Dar'iyya and their ignorant chief,
    Muhammed ibn Sa'ud (grand grand father of saudi royal family) as a
    tool to disseminate his reformation which he named Wahhabism. He
    introduced himself as the qadi and Muhammed ibn Saud as the Hakim. He
    had it declared that both would be succeeded only by their children

  7. AlQaeda = Wahabis and Salafists. AlQaeda was formed by the USA to fight the Soviet Union in 1978.
    Wahabis and Salafists don't respect the teachings of the Holy Book of Muslims, but instead, they want to kill all who disagree with them. Interestingly, however, as you states, we don't see them fighting Israel nor ever feeding the hungry Muslims.
    If they truly care for Islam, as they claim, why are they accepting a monarchy form of government in SA and the rest of the Persian Gulf? Why don't we see them resisting occupiers? Why are they constently killing Muslims around the world as if they were tools of certain nations that oppose this religion?
    The answer is clear. Since they were formed by a foreign country, they probably abide by its commands, beliefs and teachings.

  8. The MDP has deep ties to a Wahhabi-managed NGO by the name of The Islamic Foundation of Maldives which is headed by MDP-affiliates, sympathizers and in some case party officials.

    IFM-associated individuals including Fayyaz Ali Manik and Dr. Abdul Majeeb Abdul Bari are also staunch MDP supporters. Both these individuals have ties to radical Islamic movements in this country and have funded them as well.

    MDP-funding strengthens IFM and its preachers to spread their mindset across rural populations. The only thing Fayyaz , Bari and their lackeys have promised is that they would include a mention here and there that Nasheed was ousted in a "coup" and that such an uprising against an elected leader is forbidden in Islam. In the meantime they have duped Nasheed into funding the growth of their institution which provides finances to several businesses in the country which are marked with a collection box marked IFM.

    I think US intelligence and even British intel would have picked up on this a long time ago. IFM's only use is that they have promised to advocate for religious freedom as a ruse to end state control over religious teaching after which they plan to strengthen their position as the authoritative source of Islamic doctrine.

    IFM incidentally is the organization which has introduced faith-healing to the country through which their activists have been placing the mentally ill by offering exorcisms and chanting as an alternative for medical science.

    Challenge me if you will but your hero Nasheed is the man who has sold his soul to these extremists in return for political gains.

  9. @tsk tsk on Tue, 10th Jul 2012 12:17 PM
    As you stated the Wahhabis were tamed by the MDP, they were given their rights, and a voice, a platform and dignity to work within the constitution of Maldives. But before that during the Gayyoom era they were persecuted and were resolving to terrorism and jihad in Pakistan and India, fighting and doing there terrorist trainings alongside the Taliban.

    Once again the Gayooms Family Mafia has acquired power throuth a coup and are using the Wahhabis as a tool, they are being scapegoated to get the support of EU and USA.

  10. You guys cannot deny that there are extremist in Maldives!

    The Islamic ministry repeatedly tried to block this website from Maldives! What information you are allowed is limited on the internet! Don't forget that any of you! There are millions of website not accessible from Maldives. Information about your own life is limited!


  11. Neil has written quite a good article, and HLA appears to have done a very thorough job. The current mad frenzy to impose death penalty is enough evidence of what is ailing Maldives. So were comments made by Chief Justice and government ministers and MPs during the visit of Mrs Pillay. And the mujaheddin speech by Waheed.... and the list goes on...

  12. Nasheed slept with the enemy (the mullahs) during his campaign and his government.

    as for Helios, we all know who from the MDP sleeps with them !

  13. eh, when no more in power, the people except mdp cronies (hidden mujahidheen like fareed(actually i don't know how he even became a terrorist so just for says)becomes terrorists and extremists. when campaigning for power everyone including the so called mujahidheen like sheikh Ilyas etc becomes angels and life savers.what bull is this.

  14. I do not find any contradiction with the MDP's affiliations with any particular religious group. This is perfectly in line with keeping religion at bay. Most democratic countries of the world keep such relationships with their religious communities. After all, the whole point of a democracy is not to make pariahs out of any particular group or individuals.

    What's dangerous is the current regime's hand in promoting religious extremism, by giving them a free hand and participating in their propaganda machine. Of course, this is done for a political advantage rather than out of love for religion. After all, the current regime was born and still held together by the so-called "December 23rd" Jihadi movement!

  15. The Islam which I believe in is as follows.

    Prophet Mohammed (SAW) came as a Mercy to the worlds.

    Mercy has a social element to it (a mercy to the ‘worlds) as well as an individual element. Early Islamic Jurists spoke about Maslahah (utility), the Islamic version of Bentham’s utilitarianism, or doing what is best for the largest number of people possible.

    In accordance with Surah Haj (22: 78) the Prophet did not come to cause social hardship or what is difficult for people to accept.

    Qur’an 22: 78. And strive in His cause as ye ought to strive, He has chosen you, and has imposed no difficulties on you in religion; it is the cult of your father Abraham. It is He Who has named you Muslims, both before and in this (Revelation); that the Messenger may be a witness for you, and ye be witnesses for mankind! So establish regular Prayer, give regular Charity, and hold fast to Allah. He is your Protector--the Best to protect and the Best to help!

    One with a Zahiri (literalist approach) would argue that Maslahah should only be used when there is no direct Akhm (law) laid down by the Qur’an, the Sunnah or Qiyas Jali (obvious analogy) derived from the Qur’an and Sunnah. However, the early Muslims were not Zahirite (literalists).

    According to Sahih Ahadith (authentic Hadith) Umar Bin Khattab suspended "hadd" penalty (penalty prescribed by the Quran and Sunnah) of amputation of hand during famine, this is an example of Istihsan, juristic preference which is based on Ray (personal reason derived from the principles behind Islamic Hukm (law) rather than there literal application.. Here the literal law of Islam was suspended as an exceptional measure in an exceptional situation. The (Sahabi) and successors (Tabiun) were not merely literalist. On the contrary, their rulings were often based on their understanding of the spirit and purpose of Shariah.

    The Qur’an itself emphasizes that context and circumstance must be taken into account in practicing the ways prescribed by the Qur'an and Sunnah.

    Surah 5: Maida: Ayat 6
    6. O ye who believe! when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; Rub your heads (with water); and (wash) your feet to the ankles. If ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body. But if ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, God doth not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean, and to complete his favour to you, that ye may be grateful.

    The Qur'an also makes these important appeals to the spirit of science and reason.

    [Lo! In the creation of the heavens and the earth and (in) the difference of night and day are tokens (of His sovereignty) for men of understanding] (Aal `Imran 3:190).

    [Have they not observed all thing that Allah hath created] (An-Nahl 16:48).

    [Will they not regard the camels, how they are created?] (Al-Ghashiyah 88:17).

    [Have ye then no sense?] (Ya-Sin 36:68).

    [And such are the parables We set forth for mankind, but only those understand them who have knowledge] (Al-`Ankabut 29:43).

    The above verses from the Qur’an stipulate that our faculty of reason, as informed by both apriori knowledge (which is intuitive) and aposteriori knowledge (which is acquired through experience and observation as implied by the texts ie. Science) is capable of ascertaining truth.

    If something does not conform to science and reason, we must reject it. If science and reason do not reveal that a certain application of the law will not be in the best interests of all as well as the individual, it should not be implemented.

    Mindless imitation (taqlid) or blind obedience which is being demanded by Muslim scholars today, is disobedience to the Qur'anic command to use one's own reason and science in formulating opinions and beliefs. Following without questioning, believing without scrutinising, anything which amounts to unquestioning subservience is a failure to apply the Qur'anic command to apply logic.

    According to literalist beliefs, the Qur’an, as we have it in its external (zahir) literal form is eternal, is unwritten, has always existed as the Kalam Allah (Word of Allah) and therefore, it must be taken literally and applied as is.

    Reason, however, refutes the Zahirite position.

    The Qur’an says that some verses replaced (abrogated or in Arabic Naskh) others. How could the new verses which replaced the abandoned verses have existed as they were since eternity, if they had just come into existence to replace an old verse in the Prophet’s (SAW) time? How could two verses which contradict each other (the call to refrain from Al-Qital (fight) verses the call to fight for example) both have existed since eternity?

    The only way that I can reconcile this contradiction is by believing that some Ayat are eternal representations of eternal Principles, the princibles being that which comes from the essence of Allah, rather than rulings to be applied at all times in all circumstances.

    Also, it must be pointed out that application of the Hukm, the Hadd, must be in tune with the Mercy of Allah. According to the Tafsir (Commentary) of Ibn Khattab, Al – Fatiha, the ‘Opening’ called Umm Al-Kitab or the Mother of the Book, is the pivotal text around which the entire Qur’an must be implemented. Al-Fatiha reiterates the Mercy and Grace of Allah, it emphasizes these the supreme attributes twice. The words Rahman and Rahim are incredibly deep for one who understands Arabic from within, as the etymological route of these words means a Mother’s Womb.

    Therefore, having considered these points, to answer the question I proclaim that it is apparent to logic that the verses of Hadd, the Hukm must be applied according to context and must be understood through reason and science to be the best way to deal with a situation based on what is known to be best for the community and promotes mercy for all.

    All these points demonstrate that to cruelly apply the Hadd when other means are available to implement the purpose behind the Hadd rulings in the Qur’an is to abuse the merciful spirit of the Qur’an.

    For example, on whipping as prescribed for zina (fornication) the reason behind whipping, in being true to the intention to be merciful towards society, would have been to act as a deterrent to save families from the grief of splitting up. Whipping would only have been carried out in extreme circumstances where a persons adulterous behaviour was extremely damaging to their own family and others. If other detterents were available, such as advanced marriage counselling like we have now, it would not be true to the Islamic intention of social and individual mercy to whip that woman. It would be cruel, and harm both the fornicator and their family more than it would heal the society if that fornicator could get help elsewhere. Whipping was the only practice the tribal people knew would work as a detterent because other detterents were not available at the time.

    So from revelation (wahi, ie. the Qur'an)as filtered through reason, science and intuition we derive the principles and intention of Islam, and then apply a ruling which most mercifully fulfills these intentions of social and personal wellbeing for all.

    The zahirite position of applying the hadd, the hukm as is prescribed literally from the page of the Qur'an is a violation of the spirit and intention of the Islamic religion.

    Laws derived from the Hadith are to be understood and applied in the same way, as I will here touch on.

    The Soul of the Hadith verses there literal application

    Logic and reason also refute the position of the authenticity and reliability of many the Hadith’s. Historical evidence demonstrates the unreliability of Abu Hureira, for example. Some Ahadith are rightfully rejected by reason.

    Despite these faults in the Hadith, we still sense a spirit of the uprising, unification, empowering of a tribal people in the Hadith, that is why I still love the Hadith. This is the spirit, the essence of Islam which makes me remain a Muslim despite my not accepting the texts out of context.

    The Spirit of Islam

    For those who are sincere in their quest to experience the Noumena (the other) this so called ‘liberal Islam’ creates a whole new world of beautiful spiritual treasure.

    Islamic concepts, such as Jihad (derived from Jahada or struggle), the recitation of the 99 names of Allah, Justice can be personalized and understood in creative ways, like ‘Jihad against drug addiction’ for example. The beauty of the Arabic language, with all its splendor and power to elevate the soul can be experienced in its richest measure once we can focus on its spirit and feel it as well as seek to understand the meaning of it. The Arabic of the Qur’an is very much a language of the heart as well as of the mind and cannot be fully experienced unless understood deeply both in the mind AND in the heart. We MUST seek to understand it as best as we can with our mind, of course, but to experience Arabic, fully, we must feel it in our hearts also.

    Once we are free from being bogged down by the constraints of fundamentalism, we can forget irrelevant, trivial details like debating how long to grow our beards or wear our pants, and we can concentrate on applying and experiencing the essence or spirit of the Shariah, Justice, Mercy, Freedom.

    The heart of Islam is the dignity of Creation as the product not of chance, but of powerful and merciful purpose.

    Rescuing the Islamic Religion from the constraints of literalism allows one to experience a deeper, more authentic experience of religion. It allows us to be true to the majestic spirit and the merciful essence of the Islamic Faith. This Islam is much truer to the beautiful, freedom loving, mystical culture of Asia and is truer to the heart of all humanity.

    Liberal Islam is a religion of the heart and of reason, not of text and rote learning.

    My heartfelt experience of Islam is the Power of the Rahman and the Rahim (the mercy and Grace) which streams from he who is Al Qadr...the Power ie... Allah (SWT), and it is this power which elevates my sense of humanity. The Islam that I feel shreds my heart with painful mercy for the oppressed; it causes me to tremble with indignation when I see any exploitation or abuse of power.

    The Qur’an Surah 4: 75, “And Why should you not fight for those men, women and children whose cry is our Lord, rescue us from this town whose people are oppressor’s and send us one who will protect! “

    For me, this Jihad from the above verse is a struggle for human rights, social justice, and mercy. To use Jihad to justify violence in our day and age is an abuse of this beautiful, sacred duty to strive for the wellbeing of humanity.

    As I said, the Hadith are subjective expressions of objective truth. As we are all on a journey towards Jannah, only those who have arrived can express the truth in its pure form. As we have not arrived, our best expression of our experience of Faith will be contaminated by our incompleteness, by our cultural faults and failures and personal short comings.

    Anything in the Hadith’s which is against the dignity of humanity, such as Child Sex Slaves (Jaariya’s), or slavery, or the belittling of Women, I reject as the mistake of the tribal culture. Such is not true to the essence of Islam.

    Reason and science informs that it destroys a woman under the age of 18 to take her sexually, she is not emotionally mature. In being true to the spirit of Islam which is battle for the dignity of oppressed humanity, as informed by reason and science, I hereby declare that refusing to fight for the rights of a jaariya, or refusing to fight so that a jaariya situation cannot occur again, is a violation and betrayal of Islam.

    Beware of the prayer of the oppressed, there is no barrier between the oppressed and Allah!” …Hadith of Prophet (SAW) Bukhari and Muslim


  16. Not only radical Islam , I am afraid of radical Atheism as well. Both are foreign to this land and should be destroyed before it is too late.

  17. @Lee. Just think about this one point. Why is the media constantly labeling Islamists doing this or that? Is being islamists inherently a negative thing? what about chrisitianist? If islamist is someone who loves islam with zeal and vigour, do you mean to tell me that christians do not have such love for christianity? Then why do we not find christianists? why are there now jewists? the die hard settlers who lives in illegal settlements in Palestine lands; why are they not jewists?

  18. Now MinivanNews Will be prosecuted stating anti-islam Comments on the article.. Haveeru NEws Supports terrorism and torture of Maldivian citizens as long as they get their fair share. Salafists are extremists and no-one in maldives can deny it.
    Waheedh is a Gray man just like Mugabe, much less up in the head, he will destroy maumoon and nasheed, the Mans a mad Man out for power , pushed by his wife Ilham and satan Worshiping Daughters.
    And his proud Son Jef, just have a chat with the guy and u will understand how twisted this guys whole family is.

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