Muslim-Americans denounce Boko Haram kidnappings

“Boko Haram is a vicious cult that claims to follow Islam, but its obscene, unconscionable acts make it clear that in reality it knows no faith.”

“Boko Haram is a vicious cult that claims to follow Islam, but its obscene, unconscionable acts make it clear that in reality it knows no faith.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A group of Muslim-American organizations on Thursday condemned the abduction of a group of nearly 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria by Islamist militants. 

Boko Haram militants abducted an estimated 276 schoolgirls from the Chibok Government Girls Secondary School in Borno State 24 days ago. 

“These groups have been gathered together to send a very clear message, a message from our community,” said Imam Johari Abdul Malik, the director of outreach at the Dar al Hijrah Islamic Center in northern Virginia. “This behavior will not stand.” 

Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau, said in a video recording released on the Internet that he would sell the girls.  

“I abducted your girls. I will sell them in the market, by Allah,” Shekau can be heard saying. “Allah says I should sell. He commands me to sell. I will sell women. I sell women.”

Zainab Chaudry, a representative from the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights group, further assailed the militant group, saying that its actions have no place in Islam. 

“Boko Haram is a vicious cult that claims to follow Islam, but its obscene, unconscionable acts make it clear that in reality it knows no faith,” she said.

Among its core tenets, Boko Haram maintains that Western education should be done away with in preference for Islamic schooling, and that women are little more than servants and should not be educated.

Hoda Elshishtawy, a national policy analyst with the Muslim Public Affairs Council, stood in fierce opposition to their claims.

“They have violated, once again, core Islamic teachings that value all human life as sacred, prohibit depriving people of their basic freedoms, and mandate seeking knowledge as an obligatory duty of every Muslim; and access to education is a basic human right,” Elshishtawy said.

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