Scholars want protestors to exercise restraintBy Meer Agha Nasrat Samimi Feb 24, 2012 - 15:26
KABUL (PAN): Religious scholars have declared demonstrations against the desecration of Holy Quran as Islamic, condemning deaths and damage to public and private property.
Four copies of the Quran were allegedly burnt by US soldiers at the Bagram Airbase in central Parwan province, touching off angry nationwide protests.
Abdul Nasir Nusrat, a teacher at the Kabul University Sharia Faculty, told Pajhwok Afghan News on Thursday that every Muslim reserved the right to protest such an outrage.
However, he explained, Afghanistan’s constitution allowed only peaceful demonstrations. It was unjust for the protestors to harm others, he remarked, saying those resorting to violence were ignorant.
Urging the government to prevent violent actions, the teacher said: “Afghan people always act emotionally, something that leaves a bad impact.”
Nusrat condemned protesters for attacking government buildings and said the authorities should take concrete measures to stop saboteurs in their tracks.
According to Noorul Ibad, a teacher at the Sharia Faculty of Kabul University, the life and property of every individual are fully protested by Islamic laws. A Muslim is duty-bound to respect his/her religious injunctions, he stressed.
Calling the alleged sacrilege a weakness of foreign forces in Afghanistan, Ibad believed Muslims should voice their concerns in a peaceful way, avoiding harm to others’ lives and property.
A day earlier, the Taliban urged Afghans to target foreign forces in retaliation for the blasphemous act. In a statement, they condemned the incident and called for attacks on NATO-led troops.
The militant movement asked the people: "You should launch attacks on the invaders’ bases and their military convoys. Kill them, capture them, beat them and teach them a lesson that they will never again dare to insult the Quran."
ISAF Commander Gen. John R. Allen says: “Working together with the Afghan leadership is the only way for us to correct this major error and ensure that it never happens again. I call on everyone throughout the country -- ISAF members and Afghans-- to exercise patience and restraint.”
On Friday, hundreds of demonstrators -- chanting Death to America -- marched on President Hamid Karzai’s office in Kabul. Security arrangements have been put in place around the Presidential Palace.
Pledging a full investigation, US President Barack Obama has also expressed his deep regrets to the Afghan government and people over the alleged burning of the Quran.
US Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan C. Crocker extended his sincere apologies to the people of Afghanistan and expressed his deep regrets over the issue. He said Gen. John Allen had immediately offered his apology and ordered an investigation.