Open Letter
To Al-Baghdádí

Response To Daesh (Not ”IS”)

Part 12 - Slavery & Coercion and Compulsion

With over 125 leading ulemas' signatures*


Thus they are People of the Scripture. God swt  says: { Truly those who believe, and those of Jewry, and the Sabaeans, and the Christians, and the Magians and the polytheists - God will indeed judge between them on the Day of Resurrection. Assuredly God, over all things, is Witness.’} (Al-Hajj, 22: 17).

Even if you doubt that they are People of the Scripture, from the legal perspective of Shari’ah, many scholars of the Pious Forebears considered them to be commensurate with Magians based on the aforementioned Hadith. The Umayyads even considered Hindus and Buddhists to be dhimmis. Al-Qurtubi said: ‘Al-Awza’i said: “Jizyah is levied on those who worship idols and fire, as well as on unbelievers and agnostics.” This is also the Maliki position, for Imam Malik’s opinion was that jizyah is levied on all idol worshippers and unbelievers, be they Arab or non-Arabs ... except for apostates44.’


12. Slavery: No scholar of Islam disputes that one of Islam’s aims is to abolish slavery. God swt  says: { And what will show you what the obstacle is?, the freeing of a slave, or to give food on a day of hunger} (Al-Balad, 90: 12-14); and: { ... then [the penalty for them is] the setting free of a slave before they touch one another ...} (Al-Mujadilah, 58: 3).

The Prophet Muhammad’s MHMD Sunnah is that he freed all male and female slaves who were in his possession or whom had been given to him45. For over a century, Muslims, and indeed the entire world, have been united in the prohibition and criminalization of slavery, which was a milestone in human history when it was finally achieved. The Prophet MHMD said regarding the pre-Islamic ‘League of the Virtuous’ (hilf al- fudul) during the time of Jahiliyyah: ‘Had I been asked to fulfil it in Islam, I would oblige46.’

After a century of Muslim consensus on the prohibition of slavery, you have violated this; you have taken women as concubines and thus revived strife and sedition (fitnah), and corruption and lewdness on the earth. You have resuscitated something that the Shari’ah has worked tirelessly to undo and has been considered forbidden by consensus for over a century. Indeed all the Muslim countries in the world are signatories of anti-slavery conventions. God swt  says: { ... And fulfil the covenant. Indeed the covenant will be enquired into.} (Al-Isra’, 17: 34) You bear the responsibility of this great crime and all the reactions which this may lead to against all Muslims.

Coercion and Compulsion

13. Coercion and Compulsion: God swt  says: { you are not a taskmaster over them} (Al-Ghashiyah, 88: 22); and: { There is no compulsion in religion. Rectitude has become clear from error ...} (Al- Baqarah, 2: 256); and: { And if your Lord willed, all who are in the earth would have believed together. Would you then compel people until they are believers?} (Yunus, 10: 99); and: { And say, “The truth [that comes] from your Lord; so whoever will, let him believe, and whoever will, let him disbelieve”.} (Al-Kahf, 18: 29); and: { You have your religion and I have my religion} (Al- Kafirun, 109: 6).

It is known that the verse: { There is no compulsion in religion} was revealed after the Conquest of Mecca, hence, no one can claim that it was abrogated. You have coerced people to convert to Islam just as you have coerced Muslims to accept your views. You also coerce everyone living under your control in every matter, great or small, even in matters which are between the individual and God swt . In Al-Raqqa, Deir el-Zor and other areas under your control, armed groups who call themselves ‘al-hisbah’ make their rounds, taking people to task as though they were assigned by God swt  to execute His commandments.

Yet, not a single one of the Companions did this. This is not enjoining the right and honourable and forbidding the wrong; rather, it is coercion, assault, and constant, random intimidation. If God swt  wanted this, He would have obliged them over the minutest details of His religion. God swt  says: { ... Have they not realised, those who believe, that had God willed, He could have guided all mankind? ...} (Al-Ra’d, 13: 31); and: { If We will We will send down to them a sign from the heaven before which their necks will remain bowed in humility.} (Al-Shu’ara’, 26: 4).

44 Al-Qurtubi’s Tafsir, (Vol. 8, p. 110).
45 Cf Ibn Kathir’s Al-Bidayah wal-Nihayah (Vol. 5, p. 284) in which he says: ‘The Prophet MHMD freed male and female slaves ... and after the Prophet MHMD died, there were absolutely no slaves of his to be inherited.’
46 Ma’rifat as-Sunan wa Al-Athar, Bayhaqi (Vol. 11, p. 135); As-Sunan Al-Kubra, Bayhaqi (Vol. 6, p. 596); Sirah Ibn Hisham (Vol. 1, p. 266).  .-.

[continue with part 13]

Read the full letter here: Open-Letter-To-Al-Baghdadi [pdf]
Original URL: [ ]

* One of its signatories is Shaykh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi, from Syria.

Other Links:
CNN: Syrian Scholar, Sheikh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi, condemns ISIS [ youtube ]

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latest update: 2015-12-08

* living Islam – Islamic Tradition *