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  • #16
    THE future of controversial Muslim cleric Sheik Taj al-Din al-Hilaly is in dispute this morning, with one close friend saying he expected him to resign within 24 hours and another insisting he will not.

    Lebanese Muslim Association spokesman Keysar Trad said on the Nine Network this morning that the sheik was expected to release a statement today reaffirming that he would not stand down despite the outcry over comments he made that denigrated women.

    "It (the statement) has been read out to me. He is not going to step aside. I certainly hope that he doesn't change his mind. I hope he stays in his position and weathers this storm," Mr Trad said.

    But prominent Muslim leader Jamal Rifi said today that the sheik had no option but to go.

    Dr Rifi,a close confidant to the mufti, wrote him an open letter urging him to stand down for the good of the community.

    "He definitely has put us in a very difficult situation, a very unenviable position, but as a community we have to rise up and reach the challenges that we are facing right now," Dr Rifi said on ABC radio today.

    He said Sheik Hilaly had underestimated the impact of his comments on the Muslim community.

    "He described (it) as a storm in a cup, while I and many of my community see it as a category five cyclone," he said.

    Asked whether Sheik Hilaly was likely to buckle under the pressure and stand aside, Dr Rifi said, "I have no doubt whatsoever. He knows where I stand and he knows where he stands and he has no option whatsoever."

    "Give me 24 hours," he said.

    Mr Trad said the sheik was being "unfairly pilloried" over his comments at a Ramadan sermon and that he had already apologised to anyone who interpreted his message as one of women inviting rape.

    The comments were an appropriate "fire and brimstone" message on adultery and modesty delivered in the context of a sermon, Mr Trad said.

    Mr Trad also sought to explain the sheik's statement that he would resign his post only after the world was "rid of the White House" - referring to the US administration.

    "There is a great deal of hypocrisy in the way that he is being hounded, we've got several western countries creating a huge mess in Iraq," Mr Trad said.

    "And we have very little attention and focus on that, instead we're focusing on a comment that was meant to be about modesty and abstinence."

    Confusion over mufti's future

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    • #17
      TAJ Din al-Hilali is set to be stripped of his title of mufti on the grounds that Australia's 300,000 Muslims do not need a national leader.

      The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, which appoints the mufti, will vote to abolish the position at coming elections.

      AFIC spokesman Haset Sali said yesterday that the new executive board, expected to be elected in February, would work to remove the position of mufti from the council's constitution because it was not relevant to Australian society.

      Mr Sali said Australia did not need a mufti, nor was there anyone qualified to fit that post.

      "I don't believe Australia needs a mufti," Mr Sali told The Australian.

      "It needs a mufti like a hole in the head.

      "And I just don't think that there is someone who would be not only an eminent scholar but also capable of communicating in a constructive and positive way with the English-speaking community in Australia."

      Mr Sali said he was one of only a few people on the council who had voted against Sheik Hilali's appointment to the post of mufti in 1989, because he believed that the Egyptian-born cleric's views were in conflict with Australian values.

      He said he would work with other AFIC executives to ensure that the position of mufti was struck off the council's constitution.

      "If I have anything to do with it, I think it will be (abolished) because I don't think there is a person in Australia at the present time who could fulfil that position in a positive and constructive manner," he said.

      The Australian last week exposed Sheik Hilali's Ramadan sermon last month in which he likened immodestly dressed women to "meat" that attracted voracious predators.

      Mr Sali said Sheik Hilali was no longer "officially" the mufti because he resigned in July after The Australian revealed that the council could no longer pay his $40,000 yearly clerical allowance. "Since then he has not been reappointed and he is certainly not a paid employee of AFIC," Mr Sali said.

      AFIC - the national body representing all state councils - was forced into administration in September after internal brawling that followed its April elections, when a group of Pakistanis wrested control from a faction controlled by Fijian Indians.

      Mr Sali said AFIC had appointed Sheik Hilali mufti to save him from being deported for misogynistic and anti-Semitic remarks he had continually made since his arrival in Australia in 1982.

      He said former AFIC executives wrongly believed that the Egyptian-born cleric would "not be too much of a loose cannon".

      "(They) were appointing someone who was coming from another country who couldn't possibly understand the Australian situation to the extent that such a person would need to," Mr Sali said.

      "And history has proved me correct.

      "But that doesn't make me feel any better, it makes me feel really sad that we now have such an unpalatable situation within Australia which has unfortunately created a lot of anger within the community, which is unhelpful to anyone."

      Mr Sali said Sheik Hilali's ignorance of Australian values and lack of English language skills had been his downfall.

      "That's the difficulty he's faced all along. This is not something that just popped up last week, it's just been an ongoing problem," he said.

      Mr Sali described Sheik Hilali's Ramadan sermon as "repugnant" to the majority of Australian Muslims and said it should not be taken to represent the true views of Islam.

      Islamic body to get rid of mufti role

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      • #18
        SYDNEY, Australia (AP) - Australia's top Islamic cleric, who sparked outrage by saying in a sermon that immodestly dressed women invite rape, was taken to a hospital by ambulance after fainting Monday as he met Muslim leaders to discuss his future, police said.

        Earlier in the day, Prime Minister John Howard said that Sheik Taj Aldin al-Hilali may have breached Australia's counterterrorism laws by praising militants in Iraq and Afghanistan.

        Lebanese Muslim Association President Toufic Zreika told reporters outside the Lakemba Mosque that al-Hilali was "okay.''

        Zreika said the meeting between the 65-year-old Egyptian-born Sunni cleric and the Lebanese Muslim Association, which administers the mosque, had not reached a conclusion.

        "Due to unforeseen circumstances, we were unable to continue our private meeting,'' Zreika said.

        Zreika earlier told reporters that al-Hilali, who suffers from a heart condition and asthma, planned to release a statement Monday night on his future as the national mufti.

        New South Wales state Ambulance Service spokesman John Wilson said that a man who had collapsed at the mosque and was taken to Canterbury Hospital for observation was in stable condition. He declined to confirm the identify of the patient, citing privacy laws.

        Al-Hilali has rejected calls for his resignation since a national newspaper reported last week that he compared women who do not wear head scarves to "uncovered meat'' in a sermon at the mosque.

        He has apologized for any offense caused by the comments, which drew strong criticism from both non-Muslims and Muslims in Australia, and agreed to stop preaching for three months.

        The same newspaper reported Monday that al-Hilali had used an Arabic radio interview two weeks ago to endorse militancy in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Palestinian territories.

        "Jihad of Iraqi Muslims is jihad, but not when Sunnis and Shias are killing each other - that's not jihad,'' The Australian quoted al-Hilali as saying in Arabic on Oct. 17.

        It is illegal to incite violence against Australian troops. Australia, a staunch ally in the U.S.-led war on terror, has troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

        Howard said he did not know if al-Hilali's comments were being investigated.

        "If you incite people to hurt our troops, that could be an offense,'' Howard told Southern Cross Broadcasting radio.

        Al-Hilali was not available for comment about the new allegations.

        Howard said Australia's 300,000 Muslims should be considering whether al-Hilali is the right person to represent them.

        "The real worry I have, and it's a very deep worry, is that this will permanently damage the attitudes and perceptions of Muslims in the broader Australian community and I don't want that to happen,'' Howard said.

        "There's still time if they deal with it quickly, but time is running out to stop that impression solidifying,'' he added.

        Australia Islamic cleric hospitalized

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        • #19
          Ya latif! How horrible, and he's a mufti kaman!? Someone has to take his position before he stains our name even further... Al our fault al! He was feeling sorry for the rapists?!!! *breathes in - breathes out*

          At least people see the craziness of what he said.... *sigh*

          Comment


          • #20
            Blaming women for rape is an insult to men’s intelligence

            Comment


            • #21
              good you shared this Nesian W. and good you showed that article Al Khiyal and all of you are far more educated than that "Cheikh" who called women meat and men compared to animals!

              * a women is not meat. She is a living human being , one that has a soul. (most “Cheiks” don’t agree that women have a soul on her own- but that’s not what im writing about right now.
              * Men… are not cats and dogs! Men are not animals! At least most men that I know are NOT animals . Animals have an instinct, the behave according their nature. Men have a conscious, social/ cultural rules. They have the choice to distinguish right from wrong and behave like it.

              The "cheikh" spoke about protecting women? how? by justfying rape
              again a woman is NOT a brainless thing, not just a piece of meat. – I wonder if his Mother & sisters were listening too... in this story this 'cheikh" is the animal! not the men i know

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by Cheba_Mami View Post
                * Men… are not cats and dogs! Men are not animals! "At least most men that I know are NOT animals"
                .
                And how many men do you know? so that we can see what percentage they represent out of the 3 billion men who are living on this planet


                Animals have an instinct, the behave according their nature. Men have a conscious , social/ cultural rules.
                Are you sure? you seem to know angels and not men


                They have the choice to distinguish right from wrong and behave like it.
                That I will have to strongly disagree on... men have waged wars... have destroyed entire civilisations and are still killing each other... they certainly do not distinguish right from wrong....like that Mufti...

                Sorry to the men of this forum, you are all part of that small percentage of angel men

                Comment


                • #23
                  You and i at least agree the so called mufti was wrong.
                  And you might have missed my point which was the same as the articles posted before:

                  blaming women for rape is an insult to men's intelligence
                  The point was that by insulting women he –indirectly- insults ALL men too and he justified rape. He states that a man can't do anything when he sees women with uncovered bodyparts. The majority can control themselves. That men can't control themselves should not be used as an excuse to keep women at their homes in her hijab only. Men who attack a women are the ones to blame.

                  How many men I know is not the issue here. I cannot ask you – or anyone- either to proof how many men you know to make my statement. Or are you going to tell me that ALL your brothers, cousins, uncles, collegues, friends, bosses,neighbours etc. are abusers? Besides the original story was about the Australian community, check their numbers if you want to know how many men behave and how many men attack a female per 1000. And those who do attack and abuse females can’t blame women for it.

                  i do not know angels, i know my family and my friends/collegues from all over the world etc, they are normal decent people.
                  If it would be true that all men can't control themselves and all are like cats jumping on meat, women would stay at home for ever. SOME men are bad not ALL.

                  And yes, men can make a choise. A cat just jumps intinctively on meat. A man can think to attack/abuse or not. if they still make bad choises, they are responsible for that and fully to blame for that.

                  I did not say that bad men do not exist. they do unfortunately they do everywhere. There are stalkers on this board too

                  Comment


                  • #24

                    Australia, March 9, 2007 -- Five of the nation's most powerful Islamic clerics, including Sheik Taj Taj el-Dene Elhilaly, have been banned from talking to the media by Muslim leaders for delivering "anti-Australian" messages.

                    The Lebanese Muslim Association has gagged the imams from Lakemba Mosque in Sydney's southwest from media commentary - especially to Arabic news outlets - because of the "immeasurable damage" they have caused the community.

                    A letter was yesterday sent by the Lebanese Muslim Association to its five imams, including Sheik Yahya Safi - the official Australian representative to the Mufti of Lebanon - Sheik Shady Suleiman, and Sheik Hilaly.

                    The letter, obtained by The Australian, demands the imams "pause and desist" from talking to any media outlet, in particular Sydney's Arabic community radio station Voice of Islam.

                    The imams have been told they could lose their positions as spiritual leaders at the nation's largest mosque if they defy the LMA's orders.

                    LMA president Tom Zreika yesterday told The Australian the letter was issued to end the "perceived un-Australian viewpoints given by some clerics".

                    "One of the big issues is the double-speak by the various imams," Mr Zreika said.

                    He added that the messages some clerics delivered in Arabic contradicted comments given in English while talking to the mainstream media.

                    "They go on to the Voice of Islam and talk about something which really isn't in accordance with our views as Australians.

                    "(While) most of our clerics are selected on the basis that they have Australian values and Australian characteristics ... some of them haven't (lived) up to that."

                    The LMA's hardline approach towards silencing its clerics comes after the furore sparked by Sheik Hilaly last year, following revelations in The Australian last month that the mufti was banned from delivering sermons at Lakemba Mosque.

                    Sheik Hilaly caused national and international uproar last October when The Australian uncovered a sermon in which he compared women to "uncovered meat" and joked about Sydney's infamous gang rapes.

                    The cleric, who has been the nominal head of Australia's Muslim community for years, further compounded the controversy by subsequently appearing on Egyptian television to dismiss the furore over his insults to women and make disparaging remarks about Australia's convict beginnings.

                    Meanwhile rumours that he would enter the NSW political arena have been quashed - but new ones have begun that he might take a stab at federal politics.

                    Sheik Shadi yesterday said he supported the LMA's decision, saying it was in the best interests of the Muslim and wider community.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by pandora View Post
                      That I will have to strongly disagree on... men have waged wars... have destroyed entire civilisations and are still killing each other... they certainly do not distinguish right from wrong....like that Mufti...
                      Yeah... but that's not really the point, is it? Sheikh Ehhilaly was making out that rape is the fault of women who don't wear hijab. Which is arrant nonsense.



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