Execs: kidnapped Canadian’s decapitation un-Islamic PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 15 June 2016 11:48

Officials of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao branded as “un-Islamic” the decapitation of Canadian tourist Robert Hall in Sulu by his Abu Sayyaf captors, something they did not expect to happen during the Ramadhan.

The regional vice governor of ARMM, Haroun Al-Rashid Lucman, on Tuesday said the gunmen who beheaded Hall, kidnapped while  in an island resort in Davao City last year, are virtually non-Muslims.

“Islam is against the killing of innocent people and mutilation of cadavers. It is also against kidnap-for-ransom activities,” Lucman said.

Muslims fast from dawn to dusk during the Ramadhan, for them a holy month, both as a religious obligation and atonement for wrongdoings.

Fasting Muslims are to focus on good deeds, reconciliation with adversaries and acts of piety during the Ramadhan, which lasts for one lunar cycle, about 28-29 days.

Lucman, who had studied Arabic language and Islamic religion in Saudi Arabia, said nowhere in the Qur’an can one find a teaching espousing terrorism and killings to achieve religious dominance.

“It is a religion that is all about peace, which we cannot ram forcefully into the throat of others. It tells us that there is no compulsion in religion,” Lucman said.

Hall was beheaded by his Abu Sayyaf captors in a secluded area somewhere in the island province of Sulu Monday afternoon.

His head was found along a street in downtown Jolo, the provincial capital, while his body was later spotted by villagers in a grassy area in the outskirt of the municipality.

ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman on Monday night condemned the gruesome decapitation of Hall, branding the atrocity an act of terrorism.

“What is saddening and disgusting about it is that it was perpetrated amid the holy month of Ramadhan,” said Hataman, chairman of the ARMM’s inter-agency regional peace and order council.

The troubled Sulu is a component area of ARMM, which also covers Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur, both in mainland Mindanao, and  the islands of Basilan and Tawi-Tawi in the far south.

Sulu, an impoverished province, is a known hotbed of Islamic militancy and a harboring site for captives snatched by the Abu Sayyaf in nearby provinces and abroad.

“These extremists are not our people. What they do is absolutely un-Islamic,” Hataman said.

Peace activists in ARMM, among them Catholic priests and nuns, blame local officials in Sulu for the breakdown of law and order in the province, also a bastion of one of three factions in the Moro National Liberation Front, the one led by the fugitive Nur Misuari.

It is an acknowledged fact that most local executives in Sulu are absentee officials, residing in plush houses in Zamboanga City, totally detached from their municipalities, managing their local government units from a distance.

“We should not judge the good people of Sulu, the God-fearing people there because only of the felonious acts of these Abu Sayyaf members who are engaged in activities that are against the spiritual norms of Islam,” Hataman said.

Many irate ARMM employees and officials took to Facebook their disgust over the execution of Hall by his captors, tagging them in their timelines either as kuf’r (unbeliever), satanic creatures, and despotic psychopaths.

“When you are observing the Ramadhan, you also reject any satanic act that would cause Allah’s anger. It is alright to condemn acts of evil while fasting to be reminded that Allah do not want satanic doings,” a senior employee of an ARMM agency, who hails from Sulu, told Daily Zamboanga Times in Tausug accent.