Archive for category Islamic state

Jangan salahguna agama untuk politik – Dr. Asri

December 21, 2013

SHAH ALAM, 21 DISEMBER – Rakyat turun ke jalanraya dan mengadu kepada Tuhan kerana kerajaan sudah tidak lagi mendengar keluh kesah mereka, bukan bermakna rakyat mahukan sebarang bentuk negara tetapi mahukan keadilan.

Demikian analisa bekas mufti Perlis, Prof Madya Dato’ Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin terhadap revolusi berganda di Mesir yang akhirnya menyaksikan Presiden ke-lima negara tersebut, Dr Mohamad Morsi digulingkan.

Beliau mengulas lanjut soal meletakkan label ‘negara Islam’ yang bagi beliau bukanlah perkara yang terlalu penting.

“Pakistan pun ada enakmen undang-undang Islam, tetapi lihat negara dia punyalah kotor. Bukankah kebersihan itu sebahagian daripada Islam. New Zealand lebih Islam daripada Pakistan,” ujarnya dalam wacana ‘Ikhwan Muslimin: Musuh atau kawan’ di sini, hari ini. Read the rest of this entry »

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UMNO General Assembly re-enacting last year’s “drama”: Who lied – Najib/Muhyiddin, Chua Soi Lek or all three?

The 66th UMNO General Assembly is in full-swing but it is only a re-enactment of last year’s 65th UMNO General Assembly “drama”.

At the end of the 65th UMNO General Assembly last December, I posed the question: “Who lied – Najib/Muhyiddin or Chua Soi Lek? Or all three?”

Although the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak will only be delivering his UMNO Presidential address tomorrow and his winding-up speech on Friday, one does not have to be prescient to know it will be equally valid and pertinent to pose this same question at the end of the 66th UMNO General Assembly.

The Deputy Prime Minister and UMNO Deputy President, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, has already started the ball rolling for the re-enactment of this “drama” last year of whether “Who lied – Najib/Muhyiddin or Chua Soi Lek? Or all three?”

Last night at the opening of the UMNO Youth, Wanita and Puteri Assemblies, Muhyiddin dismissed PAS’ Islamic State goal as “a daydream”.

But this is the very exact opposite of what the MCA President Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek is warning the Malaysian Chinese and non-Muslims up and down the country of “a point of no return” for the PAS agenda of an Islamic state if Pakatan Rakyat wins Putrajaya in the 13th general election! Read the rest of this entry »

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Tunisia’s Hamadi Jebali: The face of moderate Islam?

Al Arabiya News
19 November 2011

TUNIS – With deep roots in the fight against anti-Muslim oppression, Hamadi Jebali emerged from years in jail under a repressive regime as a man of compromise and the moderate face of Tunisia’s Ennahda Islamist party.

The 63-year-old Ennahda secretary general is set to become the north African country’s prime minister under a deal reached by the three main parties, to be approved Tuesday by the newly elected constituent assembly.

With his neatly trimmed white beard, thin-framed glasses and the prayer mark of the pious Muslim on his forehead, Jebali “has been one of the main players on the Islamic scene” in Tunisia, Sofiene Ben Fahrat, editor of Tunisia’s La Presse daily told AFP.

“He notably led the confrontation against the regime of (Habib) Bourguiba,” the father of independent Tunisia who launched a repressive campaign against Islamists and had several of its leaders sentenced to death, he said. Read the rest of this entry »

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The politics of accommodation in PAS

Bridget Welsh
Nov 20, 2012


Islamist parties throughout the world are grappling with new roles and responsibilities. PAS is no exception.

The discussions at the party’s muktamar held in Kota Bharu last weekend highlight that PAS is adapting to new conditions globally and nationally, and in fact embracing reform.

Perhaps more than any party in Malaysia, PAS is engaging in accommodation.

Despite news reports focusing on the comments of one or two individuals – a common feature, especially in the reporting of Malaysia’s Islamic party – PAS is moving towards a more nationally-oriented position in which it can play a prominent role as a partner in an alternative government.

In fact, judging by its actions and the meeting taken as a whole rather than the words reported, the muktamar highlights that PAS is continuing to embrace more progressive positions, especially among its leadership.

Its challenges, however, have more to do with winning over its more parochial and conservative membership that is reluctant to change and struggling to adapt and understand a more complex and demanding political environment. Read the rest of this entry »

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The inexorable pursuit of an Islamic State

— Ahmad Farouk Musa
The Malaysian Insider
Nov 18, 2012

NOV 18 — If there is anything unmistakably clear from the recent muktamar or general assembly of the Islamic Party of Malaysia — PAS — is that despite the acceptance of the concept of tahalluf siyasi or political consensus among the three major components of the opposition front — Pakatan Rakyat — PAS’ ambition in establishing an Islamic State and implementing hudud laws is unwavering, if not more resolute.

It appears rather incongruous that despite the acceptance of Buku Jingga or Orange Book as a comprehensive framework of the opposition front on how to govern the country when they come to power, PAS seems to have a higher agenda — to transform the multiracial and multi-religious country into a full-fledged Islamic state with Islamic laws.

Islamic laws and hudud were never mentioned in Buku Jingga and neither was the establishment of Islamic State. PAS even came out with its own manifesto “Nation of Care and Opportunity”. However this concept of a benevolent state is not well received by many PAS members themselves. Reason being, the so-called Erdoganists in PAS mainly mooted it. Recent spate of debate about the concept of Islamist Democrat — a term popularised by the Erdoganists — between the ulama faction and the young Turks clearly proved that they are considered contaminants in the “pure and pristine” PAS struggle. Read the rest of this entry »

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Secular or non-secular: What history tells us

— Art Harun
The Malaysian Insider
Nov 08, 2012

NOV 8 — Lately there has been a public discourse on whether Malaysia is a secular country or otherwise.

Let us take a break. And take a visit down memory lanes. Perhaps history might shed some lights on the issue.

To begin with, Article 3 (1) of our Federal Constitution provides as follows:

“Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.”

Initially, when the Reid Commission was set to draft our Constitution, the Alliance (Umno, MIC and MCA) presented a 20 page memorandum to the Reid Commission. On Islam, the memo says:

“The religion of Malaysia shall be Islam. The observance of this principle shall not impose any disability on non-Muslim nationals professing and practising their own religion, and shall not imply that the State is not a secular State.”

After 118 meetings, the Reid Commission wrote its report in Rome and published it in February 1957. On the position of Islam, it says:

“We have considered the question whether there should be any statement in the Constitution to the effect that Islam should be the State religion. There was universal agreement that if any such provision were inserted it must be made clear that it would not in any way affect the civil rights of non-Muslims — ‘the religion of Malaysia shall be Islam. The observance of this principle shall not impose any disability on non-Muslim nationals professing and practising their own religion and shall not imply that the State is not a secular State’. Read the rest of this entry »

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Revisiting the secular state debate

— Ahmad Farouk Musa
The Malaysian Insider
Nov 03, 2012

NOV 3 — One of the most contentious issues in our country is the debate on Islamic State vis-à-vis Secular State. It should be highlighted at this initial point that the Islamic State concept was borne out only early in the 20th century after the demise of the Ottoman Caliphate. Irrespective of which divide we are on, one basic fact that we have to agree upon is that the terminology Dawlah Islamiyyah or Islamic State was never mentioned in the Qur’an.

However, Islamic State remains the main agenda of political Islam that defines Islam as ad-deen wa-dawlah or “religion and state”. It could be argued that since there is no single predominant interpretation of what an Islamic state is, a vicious contestation still exists among the Islamists about the concept of Islamic State. Read the rest of this entry »

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Deceit on the ‘Islamic state’

KJ John
Oct 30, 2012

Marina Mahathir wrote in a recent column that for any candidate seeking to be voted in this general election, the following are good and civil traits:

1. Be nice, be gracious, be polite – rudeness makes you look ugly.

2. If you disagree with someone, fine. But disagree courteously and intelligently, and do not just bad-mouth them.

3. If you do not think that someone is right, give your reasons why.

4. At least pretend that your audience is smart, and live up to them.

5. If you really think violence is the answer, we will find you a ticket to Syria, where you can indulge in all that you want to.

6. If you really think you are a defender of Islam, we will get you a ticket to trail the Republicans on their election campaign. We will even get you a spot on Rush Limbaugh’s show, where you can do your defending thing.

7. Do suddenly stop kissing babies and hugging old people. Seriously, we are not buying it.

8. Leave your expensive watch at home if you are going to sympathise with how people are coping with their monthly expenses. Unless you are going to donate the cost of the watch to some worthwhile cause.

9. Lower your volume. Shouting something stupid does not make it smarter.

10. Tell us what your principles in life are, and how you aim to stick to them.

My only addition is that no serving member of parliament should lie publicly. It is worse if one is a member of the cabinet. And because of such lies, I would argue that we need a ‘truth-o-meter’ which the CNN uses to validate claims by US presidential candidates.

I am boiling mad because Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz, the so-called minister responsible for parliamentary and legal matters, was quoted by theSun as saying: “None of the nation’s past prime minister (have) ever declared Malaysia a secular state … the only sitting prime minister who (has) made a statement on the issue was … (Dr) Mahathir Mohamad, who declared that Malaysia is an Islamic state.”

Since we do not have the privilege of a truth-o-meter service in Malaysia, allow me to assume that role since my column is also called ‘Truth Matters’. Read the rest of this entry »

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Hudud will not impact non-Muslims, minister says

by Clara Chooi
The Malaysian Insider
Oct 24, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 24 — Hudud will not have an impact on non-Muslims in Malaysia, Umno minister Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom has said, disputing the repeated warnings by political ally MCA to the Chinese community on the controversial Islamic penal code.

In a written reply to Tan Tee Beng (IND-Nibong Tebal), the minister for Islamic affairs, explained that hudud, which prescribes the amputation of hands for theft, could only be applied to those who come under the jurisdiction of the Syariah court — Muslims.

“Therefore, hudud law will not impact non-Muslims,” he concluded.

MCA has been using the hudud issue to warn the non-Muslim community away from voting for Pakatan Rakyat (PR) in the coming polls, insisting that the pact’s “dominant” partner PAS would insist on its implementation despite its ties with secular DAP and PKR.

Hudud has remained a sensitive touch point in Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy, which has a 60 per cent Muslim population, with political parties continuing to spar over the subject in the run-up to the 13th general election.

The idea of an Islamic criminal code has been used to either scare the minority Chinese voters, or shore up support among the majority Malay-Muslim community. Read the rest of this entry »

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Has Chua Soi Lek turned MCA into Malaysian Charlatans Party by keeping quiet on Jamil’s parliamentary answer on hudud?

Has the MCA President Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek turned MCA into “Malaysian Charlatans Party” by keeping quiet on the hudud answer given by the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom in Parliament on Tuesday, exposing the utter hypocrisy of the MCA campaign on hudud in the past two years?

Yesterday, in my media statement “UMNO/MCA’s ‘Devil’s Compact’ confirmed by Mahathir within 24 hours”, I had posed the question to Chua and the MCA leadership whether Jamil’s parliamentary reply “if hudud laws are implemented in Malaysia, they will not have any implications on non-Muslims” represented the stand of MCA in Cabinet and BN, “and if not, what are they going to do about it”.

There has been no answer but only thunderous silence!

How can this be the case when in the past two years, Chua had been leading his coterie of MCA Ministers and Deputy Ministers up and down the country with only one campaign theme – that it is a “lie” that hudud laws will not affect non-Muslims. Read the rest of this entry »

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More Nonsense from Nazri

By Martin Jalleh

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Kit Siang: Former PMs declared Malaysia a secular state

Karen Arukesamy and Hemananthani Sivanandam at the Dewan Rakyat
The Sun
22 October 2012

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 22, 2012): The country’s first prime minister, the late Tunku Abdul Rahman, had openly declared that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as its official religion, the Dewan was told today.

“I can give documents and proof to show that the former prime ministers of the country have declared Malaysia as a secular state and not an Islamic state,” DAP Parliamentary Leader Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) said when rebutting Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul Aziz’s statement that Malaysia is not a secular state.

Quoting The Star of Feb 9, 1983, Lim said the Tunku had reportedly said: “Don’t make Malaysia an Islamic state” in his speech on his 80th birthday on Feb 8, 1983.

“It was a huge function, which was attended by all the Barisan Nasional (BN) leaders, including the current prime minister (Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak).

“The Star frontpage on Feb 9, 1983 read: ‘The Tunku turns 80 – Don’t make Malaysia an Islamic state: Tunku’.

“On Feb 13, 1983, Tun Hussein Onn, who became the third prime minister, on his birthday, gave his full support to Tunku’s statement as reported in The Star: ‘Hussein says no to Islamic state’,” Lim added.

Citing further from pre-Constitution documents, Lim said all the documents clearly indicate that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as the official religion, but not an Islamic state. Read the rest of this entry »

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Malaysia a secular state contrary to Nazri’s remarks, say law experts

By Debra Chong and Ida Lim
The Malaysian Insider
October 23, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 23 — Malaysia is and has always been a secular state even though not expressly stated in the Federal Constitution because the country’s supreme law and founding document is secular, several law experts say as debate continues to storm over the mainly Muslim nation’s status.

The legal pundits refuted minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz’s remarks in Parliament yesterday that Malaysia is not a secular state because it had never been declared or endorsed as such and is wholly absent in the Constitution though he stopped short of labelling the country an Islamic state.

“It’s absolutely untrue,” said Tommy Thomas, regarded as one of the country’s foremost authorities on constitutional law.

“To me, to say that Malaysia is not a secular state because the Federal Constitution does not say so is a real, oversimplistic argument. Just like the Federal Constitution does not say Malaysia is an Islamic state,” he told The Malaysian Insider last night.

The veteran lawyer, who had studied the subject and presented an essay debunking Malaysia as an Islamic state at the Malaysian Law Conference seven years ago, said his research had shown that the country’s forefathers and the legal experts who helped draft the Constitution had intended the country remain secular even as it acknowledged the individual Malay state Rulers’ rights and power over religious matters which, he pointed out, was for the most part ceremonial. Read the rest of this entry »

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History contradicts minister’s arguments that Malaysia is not secular

By Zurairi AR | October 22, 2012
The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 22 ― Historical accounts show that Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun Hussein Onn had both said Malaysia is a secular state, contradicting de facto law minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz’s remarks in Parliament today that the country had no secularist roots.

Nazri told Parliament today that Malaysia has never been declared or endorsed as a secular state, arguing that the country was formed of the Malay Sultanate, an Islamic government and, unlike countries like the United States, India or Turkey, was never declared as secular.

His remarks today come amid debate over the status of the Federal Constitution. It was also made despite a previous Supreme Court ruling that said Malaysia is a secular state, as well as previous statements made by earlier leaders such as the Tunku, the country’s first prime minister.

Tunku Abdul Rahman had referred to Malaysia as a secular state, and not an Islamic one, on a number of separate occasions.
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Only fools or knaves or those who are both could believe the lies about DAP seeking to establish a Christian State in Malaysia

Desperation knows no bounds. This is amply illustrated by UMNO/BN political desperadoes, whether in the political front-line or hiding in the shadows pulling propaganda strings hatching the most far-fetched and outlandish conspiratorial theories in the mainstream or social media to create fear and sow the seeds of hate and conflict to ensure the survival of the sixth Prime Minister and the ruling coalition in the imminent 13th General Election.

The issue of a Christian Malaysia and the allegation that DAP wants to repeal Article 3 of the Federal Constitution providing for Islam as the religion of the Malaysian Federation in order to establish a Christian State is one of the most irresponsible and reckless of lies and falsehoods in the current repertoire of the UMNO/BN political desperadoes.

In fact, those who disseminate such lies and falsehoods utterly reckless about its damage to the process of nation-building in multi-racial and multi-religious Malaysia qualify to be condemned as the vilest and most despicable traitors to the vision of an united and harmonious Malaysian nation!

Only fools or knaves or those who are both could believe the lies that the DAP is seeking to establish a Christian State.

Henceforth, let Malaysians put the “fools or knaves” test to the political desperadoes who could so recklessly and irresponsibly disseminate such lies and falsehoods – whether they are fools or knaves, or both! Read the rest of this entry »

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On the secular state controversy

― Ahmad Fuad Rahmat
The Malaysian Insider
Sep 26, 2012

SEPT 26 ― Some weeks have passed since the release of our rather controversial call for a secular state. Naturally, we encountered many comments along the way. Many were constructive, while one particularly from HAKIM was nothing short of vitriolic.

In the interest of furthering democratic debate, we shall take the opportunity here to clarify the misconceptions we encountered along the way in hope that our position will be more clearly understood. Read the rest of this entry »

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MCA President Chua Soi Lek playing destructive role of Utusan Malaysia seeking to frighten Chinese voters with lies and falsehoods in the same manner Utusan trying to scare Malay voters

The MCA President Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek is playing the destructive role of Utusan Malaysia seeking to frighten Chinese voters with lies and falsehoods in the same manner Utusan has been trying in the past three years to scare Malay voters with its daily staple of lies and falsehoods.

The role of Utusan Malaysia, the official organ of UMNO, is to violate all ethics of journalism to systematically and unconscionably concoct and dispense lies and falsehoods about the DAP and the Pakatan Rakyat to stampede the Malay voters to vote solidly for UMNO.

For instance, Utusan Malaysia had been publishing downright lies and falsehoods about the DAP, spreading the completely baseless allegation that the DAP is anti-Malay, anti-Islam and anti-Malay Rulers, that the DAP wants to create a Christian Malaysia to replace Islam as the official religion, appoint a Christian Prime Minister, establish a Republic and abolish the system of Malay monarchy.

In the past months, it has become obvious that the MCA President is playing the irresponsible and divisive role of Utusan Malaysia by seeking to frighten the Chinese voters to stampede them to vote for MCA through what MCA strategists believe is the MCA trump card – the issue of Islamic state and hudud implementation.

DAP’s stand on Malaysia as a secular state has always been constant and consistent.

We hold firm to our fundamental principle that an Islamic state and hudud laws are inappropriate and unsuitable for Malaysia as a plural society. Read the rest of this entry »

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Arguing for a secular state

By Ahmad Farouk Musa
Free Malaysia Today
August 23, 2012

The question is would discriminatory policies noted in classical texts of Islamic state be acceptable in the modern era.


To many Muslims and especially the Islamists, the term secular is a very repugnant term and this abhorrence to anything secular stems mainly from the previously bitter experience of secularism in Turkey that had led to the dissolution of the Ottoman Caliphate, the last Caliphate in the Muslim world.

The fall of the Ottoman Caliphate led to some Muslim scholars to push for a new entity known as an Islamic state. The concept of an Islamic state was not known in the Islamic world before that. The main proponent for an Islamic state was none other than Muhammad Rashid Redha, a great Muslim reformer in the early 20th century. The main intention of Redha was to stem the onslaught of Western imperialism.

History has shown that while secularism was born in the West, its values spread across the world in many different continents and societies. According to Louay Safi, a scholar at the International Institute of Islamic Thought, secularism denotes a set of notions and values whose aim is to ensure that the state is neither engaged in promoting specific religious beliefs and values, nor uses its powers and offices to persecute religion.

To prevent state officials from using their political authority to impose a narrow set of religious attitudes and values on the larger society, and to foreclose the possibility of using religious symbols to agitate one religious community against another, a separation must be made between political authorities from religious affiliation. Read the rest of this entry »

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Antara Islam dan ‘negara Islam’

— by Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin
The Malaysian Insider
Nov 25, 2011

25 NOV — Awal bulan November ini saya hadiri seminar di The Middle East Centre, Oxford bertajuk “The Sacking of Syria: Assad as Hulego”. Pembentangnya Rana Kabbani, seorang penulis dan penyiar Syria. Saya kagum dengan keberanian wanita ini. Mungkin jika di Malaysia ada pihak yang tidak mahu hadiri ucapannya sebab beliau “free hair” dan agak bergaya. Letak itu di sebelah dahulu, saya kagum dengan semangatnya mengkritik regim-regim Arab. “A very inspiring speech.”

Saya tertarik apabila salah seorang British bertanya beliau bahawa tidakkah nanti selepas kejatuhan Assad akan menyebabkan golongan “extremist” yang memperjuangkan “Islam state” akan mengambil alih. Beliau dengan bersemangatnya bertanya balas “kenapa awak kata demikian? Apakah kerana awak mendengar mereka melaungkan ‘Allahu Akbar’?!”

Seterusnya beliau berkata bahawa mereka melaungkan Allahu Akhbar adalah kerana Islam agama mereka. Tiada siapa berhak menafikan hal itu. Ia bermaksud Allah itu Maha Besar. Itu adalah slogan Muslim apabila berhadapan dengan regim yang sombong dan bongkak. Untuk siapa lagi yang hendak mereka laungkan slogan kebesaran. Tiada kaitan dengan kehendak mengujudkan “Islam state” seperti yang diidamkan oleh sesetengah gerakan. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tunisia’s Islamist-led government rejects laws to enforce religion

Al Arabiya News
Saturday, 05 November 2011

Tom Heneghan

Tunisia’s Islamist-led government will focus on democracy, human rights and a free-market economy in planned changes to the constitution, effectively leaving religion out of the text it will draw up, party leaders said.

The government, due to be announced next week, will not introduce sharia or other Islamic concepts to alter the secular nature of the constitution in force when Tunisia’s Arab Spring revolution ousted autocrat Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in January.

“We are against trying to impose a particular way of life,” Ennahda leader Rachid Ghannouchi, 70, a lifelong Islamist activist jailed and exiled under previous regimes, told Reuters.

Tunisian and foreign critics of Ennahda, the moderate Islamist party that won 41.7 percent of Tunisia’s first free election on Oct. 23, have voiced fears it would try to impose religious principles on this relatively secular Muslim country. Read the rest of this entry »

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