Open Letter from PAS President
COOPERATION AMONG ISLAMIC COUNTRIES IN DEALING WITH COVID-19
The basic principle of international relations in Islam is to promote peace, tolerance and cooperation with one another. The message of Islam contains of concept of a civilized society that connects Islam and extends kindness to all mankind especially during this critical period of Covid-19 outbreak and the consequences of its spread.
It is therefore the obligation of the Islamic governments to cooperate and unite with one another as well as to give support to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and its institutions in making resolutions and real efforts to assist member states in dealing with Covid-19 outbreaks and coordinate actions that every country needs to take.
In addition, they also need to cooperate with international organizations to form a union of mankind and abandon racial fanaticism, differences and divisions among ethnics, religions and ideologies in the society since Islam is a just religion and considers all of humanity as one big family.
Allah SWT said:
﴿يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلنَّاسُ إِنَّا خَلَقۡنَٰكُم مِّن ذَكَرٖ وَأُنثَىٰ وَجَعَلۡنَٰكُمۡ شُعُوبٗا وَقَبَآئِلَ لِتَعَارَفُوٓاْۚ إِنَّ أَكۡرَمَكُمۡ عِندَ ٱللَّهِ أَتۡقَىٰكُمۡۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ خَبِيرٞ١٣﴾ (الحجرات: 13)
“O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).” (Surah al-Hujurat: 13)
Allah SWT also encourages cooperation in matters of righteousness, welfare and piety as explained in the Quran to the believers:
﴿وَلَا يَجۡرِمَنَّكُمۡ شَنََٔانُ قَوۡمٍ أَن صَدُّوكُمۡ عَنِ ٱلۡمَسۡجِدِ ٱلۡحَرَامِ أَن تَعۡتَدُواْۘ وَتَعَاوَنُواْ عَلَى ٱلۡبِرِّ وَٱلتَّقۡوَىٰۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُواْ عَلَى ٱلۡإِثۡمِ وَٱلۡعُدۡوَٰنِۚ وَٱتَّقُواْ ٱللَّهَۖ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ شَدِيدُ ٱلۡعِقَابِ٢﴾ (المائدة: 2)
“Let not the hatred of some people in (once) shutting you out of the Sacred Mosque lead you to transgression (and hostility on your part). Help ye one another in righteousness and piety but help ye not one another in sin and rancour: fear Allah: for Allah is strict in punishment.” (Surah al-Maeda: 2)
The world is divided into several categories namely developed, developing and others but the Muslim world is considered to be among the weakest despite having strategic geographical positions as well as extraordinary Earth’s resources which Allah has bestowed upon the Muslims even when they were in a state of weakness, divided and disunited.
Looking at the map of the Islamic world from an ocean to another – from Tangier in Morocco to Jakarta in Indonesia – we see this map is connected by both land and water and is located in a strategic place, rich with human resources and beneficial outputs from the Earth’s core. The Muslim world also has numerous scholars, experts, skilled labours and not to mention abundance in agricultural resources and mineral resources.
Therefore, we must learn from the past and the present which Western colonialist nations have taken advantage of our resources, whereas we have not benefitted any from it.
European markets and economic cooperative bodies in rich developed countries depend heavily on investments from our own resources. They also exploit the brilliance of our children and make them workers in factories and shops. If that so, why are we still behind from other nations?
The reason for that is because we failed to see the blessings of Islam that Allah has given to us and the consequences of political corruption that happened left us far behind. Finally, we wasted our resources and gave others the opportunity to take advantage of our properties and lands.
It is therefore the obligation of all Muslims to rise and respond to the call of unity to Islam by acting in moderation for it is the reason that the Muslim ummah are dignified and strengthened. It serves as evidence to the people especially at a time when the superpowers are struggling to cope with Covid-19 and the impacts of the outbreak on political, economic and social issues are becoming increasingly alarming as the case progresses. Only Allah knows the consequences and whether it will break any international relation among the nations.
The Muslim countries must thus rise by capitalizing on their geographies and positions that are very important internationally and in other countries. We must return to Islam, rekindle the brotherhood that is based on faith and unity among all the Muslims and harness our strengths through the aspects of spirituality, humanity and materialistic values.
In addition, we must adhere to all the rules of the Islamic law, take a more open and comprehensive ijtihad in the face of difficulties in life and carry out all the important matters as well as prioritizing the foremost matters in order to face the reality that we are facing today.
The Muslim countries must also work together in various fields such as medicine, technology and agriculture. It is such a shame if any Muslim countries has to wait to get the help from others for medicine. This is because the minds of the Muslim children have been brainwashed and it is unfortunate because they are the most precious treasures and thus should be protected from letting the rational part of their mind further exploited by rich Western countries.
A better cooperation would be between rich Muslim countries from the Arabs and poor but fertile Muslim countries, by investing and capitalizing on their expertise and workforce to meet the needs of the Muslims and to help humanity.
We do not consume oil or gas and we also do not swallow cash, dinars, dirhams, dollars, riyals, mineral resources and sheets of paper. What the people need instead is food, clothing, agriculture and establishment of professional industry based on wisdom, knowledge and expertise.
Unfortunately, a test of sickness and death befall some people due to excessive eating and drinking. Other die from lack of medication and hospital facilities and some die from hunger and thirst. There is a huge gap between these two scenarios.
We must then take care of the affairs of the oppressed Muslims who are now refugees in either Eastern or Western countries whether they are in Gaza, Kashmir, Yemen, Syria or the Rohingya Muslim minority in Myanmar.
Therefore, anything that caused division and conflict among the Muslims to the extent that we were manipulated and used against one another should be stopped.
Enough with the racist solidarity that led to dissension and made the Muslims become disgusting ignorant.
Be a servant that are bound by brotherhood.
Remember the word of Allah SWT:
﴿وَٱعۡتَصِمُواْ بِحَبۡلِ ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعٗا وَلَا تَفَرَّقُواْۚ١٠٣﴾ (آل عمران: 103)
“And hold fast, all together by the rope which Allah (stretches out for you) and be not divided among yourselves.” (Surah Ali Imran: 103)
﴿وَلَا تَكُونُواْ كَٱلَّذِينَ تَفَرَّقُواْ وَٱخۡتَلَفُواْ مِنۢ بَعۡدِ مَا جَآءَهُمُ ٱلۡبَيِّنَٰتُۚ وَأُوْلَٰٓئِكَ لَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٞ١٠٥﴾ (آل عمران: 105)
“Be not like those who are divided amongst themselves (the Jews and the Christians) and fall into disputations (in their religions) after receiving Clear signs (from the Prophets); for them is a dreadful penalty.” (Surah Ali Imran: 105)
﴿كُنتُمۡ خَيۡرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخۡرِجَتۡ لِلنَّاسِ تَأۡمُرُونَ بِٱلۡمَعۡرُوفِ وَتَنۡهَوۡنَ عَنِ ٱلۡمُنكَرِ وَتُؤۡمِنُونَ بِٱللَّهِۗ١١٠﴾ (آل عمران: 110)
“Ye are the best of peoples, evolved for mankind, enjoining what is right, forbidding what is wrong, and believing in Allah.” (Surah Ali Imran: 110)
﴿وَقُلِ ٱعۡمَلُواْ فَسَيَرَى ٱللَّهُ عَمَلَكُمۡ وَرَسُولُهُۥ وَٱلۡمُؤۡمِنُونَۖ وَسَتُرَدُّونَ إِلَىٰ عَٰلِمِ ٱلۡغَيۡبِ وَٱلشَّهَٰدَةِ فَيُنَبِّئُكُم بِمَا كُنتُمۡ تَعۡمَلُونَ١٠٥﴾ (التوبة: 105)
“And say: “Work (righteousness): soon will Allah observe your work, and His Messenger and the Believers: soon will ye be brought back to the knower of what is hidden and what is open: then will He show you the truth of all that ye did.” (Surah At-Tawbah: 105)
ABDUL HADI AWANG
Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to Middle East
Date: 26 Syaaban 1441 / 20th April 2020