The president of the Directorate General for Religious Affairs (Diyanet), Mehmet Görmez, has dismissed suggestions that Islam could be used to justify recent attacks on civilians in Kenya and Pakistan, saying terrorism had no place in Islam.
It is impossible to find references in Islam that permit any attacks on people of different religious faiths across the breadth of the Islamic world, he said. “These things are totally outside of Islam and are things Islam rejects and never accepts,” Görmez said Oct.1, referring to recent attacks in Kenya and Pakistan, at a meeting in Istanbul.
More than three dozen people still remain unaccounted for almost a week after the end of the four-day terrorist attack on Nairobi’s Westgate Mall that killed at least 67. The raid was claimed by al-Shabaab, an al-Qaeda-linked Somali group which has vowed more attacks if Kenya fails to pull its troops out of Somalia. Meanwhile, a twin suicide bombing killed at least 78 people at a church service in northwest Pakistan on Sept. 22 in what is believed to be the deadliest attack on Christians in the country.
“The right thing is to condemn all people and organizations who want to smear Islam and get rid of those people. This is a crucial thing that all scientists, clerics, religious associations and politicians should do,” Görmez said, adding that all should make efforts to halt terror attacks.