Muslim cleric says 'Islamophobia' a result of Islamic extremism, not racism

The senior member of the world’s biggest Muslim organisation has insisted that Islamophobia is not rooted in 'racism' and that the distrust of Muslims in many countries is a result of Islamist extremism and terrorism throughout the world.

Yahya Cholil Staquf, the secretary-general of Indonesia’s Nahdlatul Ulama movement, which claims to have more than 90 million adherents, wrote in an article in Britain’s Daily Telegraph saying that the traditional Muslim mindset needed to change.

He called for a rejection of Islamic orthodoxy, condemning it as ‘obsolete and problematic’ and ‘fuelling violence on both sides’.

The influential cleric wrote that the All-Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims was ‘factually incorrect’ in linking the definition of the word ‘Islamophobia’ to racism, and that it was ‘counter-productive’ to do so.

‘The truth, we recognise, is that jihadist doctrine, goals and strategy can be traced to specific tenets of orthodox, authoritative Islam and its historic practice. This includes those portions of sharia that promote Islamic supremacy, encourage enmity towards non-Muslims and require the establishment of a caliphate. It is these elements – still taught by most Sunni and Shiite institutions – that constitute a summons to perpetual conflict,’ he wrote.

What a breathe of fresh air from a leading Islamic leader.

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