TORONTO: In a time of heightened tension and hot debate concerning specifically the ground zero mosque in New York and generally the religion of Islam in North America, Canadian imams took the opportunity of the blessed month of Ramadan (month of fasting and reflection) to set the record straight and to tell the public what is truly their position on a number of issues including the sanctity of life, working for the common good of humanity, gender equity and civic engagement.
“We hope this declaration will make our stance and the views of the silent majority of Canadian Muslims on a variety of issues loud and clear,” says Imam Dr. Hamid Slimi, Chairman of the Canadian Council of Imams. “It represents unprecedented unanimity among Canada's mainstream Muslim leaders on many issues currently viewed as controversial among non-Muslims, and we expect it to reverberate around the world.”
Imam Habeeb Alli, Secretary of the Council adds, “This is not a new declaration being aired, but the culmination of years of declarations on a wide range of issues and continual condemnation of un-Islamic practices.”
In his remarks on the presentation of this Declaration to all Imams, Imam Hamid Slimi said, "After months of consultation and years of involvement, this Declaration of Principles aims to capture the common beliefs Muslims and their leaders uphold in this country of ours, while dispelling any myths that Canadian Imams living in multicultural and democratic Canada are out of touch with Canadian issues and realities. We hope the blessings of Ramadan will enshroud this deserving document with its special sanctity."
Coming from Canadian Imams and scholars who have undertaken academic studies in the religion and are executing their leadership roles in their respective communities, this message responds to the need to have a public document readily accessible that presents the views and policies of Canadian Imams on a range of issues. The Imams read out the “Canadian Council of Imams Declaration” to their communities and the rest of Canada on August 13th, 2010, the first Friday of Ramadan.
For the Full text of the Declaration, please click here: