Showing posts with label international relations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label international relations. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Islam and International Law


Religion, Law and State

In his Friday Sermon of 08 November 2019~ 10 Rabi’ul Awwal 1441 AH, Imam- Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam Hadhrat Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius spoke about the significance of law in upholding the dignity of the individual as well as in sustaining the global order for the collective progress of human kind. Hadhrat Khalifatullah (atba) identifies the distinctive contribution of Islamic values to the development of International Law in this context. 

It is instructive to note that while modern international law was for long considered to be a product of Western, Christian civilization and generally traces its origins to the legal problems that emerged in the context of the European imperial conquests (of South America in the 16th century and Asia and Africa in the subsequent centuries); there is increasing recognition in the academic literature now regarding the  profound debt the discipline owes- in shaping the contours of the subject- to the seminal writings and juristic interpretations of Hazrat Imam Muhammad Al Shaybani (ra), the great disciple of the great Muhaddith Hazrat Imam Abu Hanifa (ra), almost eight centuries before European scholars like Hugo Grotius- the 'father' of international law- began to engage with, and write about, the discipline.   

International Law as it stands today may broadly be defined as an ensemble of normative rules and diplomatic practices that guide actor-expectations in the world of international relations. And the actors on the global scene include, besides the States, international organizations, a host of official governance networks; multinational corporations, indigenous communities and the civil society organizations campaigning on reforming the systems of global governance. Despite the dynamic nature of the actor-interactions as well as the development of global rules in specific areas; the foundational values of International Law remain the same: sovereign equality and peaceful co-existence of States; the sanctity of covenants and the bindingness of legal obligations; the obligation of the Parties to act in good faith; respect for the symbols and signs of sovereignty of States, including the privileges of ambassadors and State agents; respect for diversity of community traditions and practices, etc.  Hadhrat Saheb (atba) illustrates these points with reference to Qur'anic verses and Prophetic practices, as it is the task of the true believers in this era to shun hypocrisy and work to create a just world under Islam. 

Read the Friday Sermon Below: 

Saturday, July 7, 2018

The Divine Messages of 21-23 June 2018


In his Friday Sermon of 06 July 2018 (21 Shawwal 1439 AH), Hadhrat Muhyi-ud-Din Al Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius presents before the world the recent Divine Messages which he received from Allah (swt). These Messages from the Unseen contain profound insights into the uncompromising monotheism that Islam espouses as the spiritual path for the humans. Under the Islamic conception of God, the ultimate sovereignty and authority lies entirely with that Unique, Eternal and Everlasting Being who is the Lord of the Universe. So comprehensive and so complete is the Lord’s control over all affairs that the humans are utterly dependent upon His favours for the chance gains of this life. Divine Grace and Mercy determines his very existence and continued welfare, both in this world and in the world to come.
A necessary corollary of this concept of Divine Lordship/Rule is the ideas of human equality and universal brotherhood. In the Kingdom of God on Earth, all people of various identities- across classes, peoples and nations- are to share the global space and live in harmony and amity, celebrating the promise of diversity in our common humanity and shared destiny. Amidst all the God-made differences in the world, people can and should learn from each other in a spirit of humility and modesty, building networks of solidarity and mutual cooperation and of healthy competition in the pursuit of good deeds. In such a Divine Order, there is no space for Satanic impulses like arrogance, false pride, vanity and hubris.
The Divine scheme of things in the real world of the humans acknowledges that 'spiritual diseases' are a reality and that the true believers need to be aware of it. The vicious offshoots of satanic impulses can prevent us from being just to God and the fellow humans. Both in human relations and international affairs, one can see the individual and collective ‘self’ at work. Often the way in which one defines the ‘Self’ also determines his/her attitude towards the ‘Other’. A capacious conception of the ‘self’ make us humble and humane and allows us to empathize to, and identify with, the problems of other peoples/nations like us, whereas a narrowly-defined ‘self’ induces us to have a blurred view of the 'other'. The chance gains of this life- individual attainments; family ‘pedigree’; riches; class/group identities; national power- can even turn us away from our larger responsibilities towards God and our fellow beings. Whereas all blessings of this life come from God, to credit these bounties to any false sense of 'self' is nothing but delusions induced by the work and whisperings of the satans. As it happens, false pride and arrogance leads to an inexorably destructive trajectory of intolerance, fanaticism, extremism and violence; whereas humility and empathy for others lead us to gaze at the whole human race as ‘limbs of the same body’.

The Divine Message invites our attention to the ‘Way of Allah’In a world that has virtually turned upside down- riven with imperialist overreach fueling conflicts in the poorer nationscapitalist aggrandizement exacerbating global injustice; inequality and poverty amidst concerns of global warming and climate change; scant regard for human dignity and the rights of the indigent masses, migrants and refugees- it is important to underscore spiritual values and ethical principles in the quest to reclaim the world on an even keel. By raising an Elect of His with a mission- the Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam International- the Lord of the Universe indicates where the future belongs in our world, Insha AllahJust as all prophets and other Divine messengers in the long chain of human history had called the people of their times to God; a Divine servant of our times is here to remind us about the wisdom of eternal teachings preserved in the Holy Qur’an- be humble; shun arrogance and seek to strive in the pure and clear path of Divine proximity, Alhamdulillah, Soumma Alhamdulillah. 


Read the Extracts from the Friday Sermon:


Today I have chosen to present to you the Divine Messages which I received from Allah on the 21 June 2018 in English, messages which continued sometimes continuously and other times intermittently till 23 June 2018.

Al-Yawma ak-maltu lakum Diinakum wa atmamtu alaykum nimatii wa raziitu lakumul Islaama Diinaa. [Which means: This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favour upon you and have chosen for you Islam as religion.]

O Munir Ahmad Azim, My Khalifatullah and Messiah of this era, I raised you in this era as Dalil Al-Khayrat (The Guide to good deeds) and Nasih (The True Counsellor and Transformer of Men’s souls) with a Jamaat named Sahih al Islam.

Sahih al Islam means: The truth of Islam which corrects and cancels man’s distortions of divine truths previously revealed and re-establishes the true message of Allah (swt).

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

The Middle East on Short Fuse

Based on recurring Divine inspirations and special Messages in recent times, Imam- Jamaat Ul Sahih Al Islam Hadhrat Khalifatullah  Munir Ahmad Azim (atba) of Mauritius is inviting the world's attention to the looming dangers lurking beneath our troubled global order. These Divinely-inspired warnings can be read in his recent Friday Sermons, shared also through this Blog. When they look at, read up and reflect on these profound words intimating about the extraordinary dangers facing our small world; knowledgeable Muslims will remember the prophecies contained in the Holy Qur’an, as well as in the Prophetic traditions on the portents/events of the End Times. Ahmadis among them will also remember the dire warnings lefty behind by the Promised Massih (as) in the last century and also the unfulfilled aspects of those grim prophecies concerning the Later Days. 

The World at the Brink

There is little doubt that humanity is at the brink of Disaster(s) in our times. World nations are facing multiple dangers of an existential proportion: of environmental degradation, species extinction and the grim prospect of nuclear annihilation. The unsustainable consumption patterns in the industrialized world have also produced the irreversibly great danger of global warming and climate change, as science now confirms. The devastating consequences of this drastic change in weather patterns would be felt everywhere. Indeed, climate change threatens as it comes home not just in the main lands of the industrial world, but even the inhabitants of remote island nations who had done nothing comparable to  to bring about the whole problem. 

Likewise, powerful nations have arrogated to themselves ‘total security’ of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and they threaten other nations that defy their dictates. So much so that countries like North Korea seek nuclear capability as a security imperative; triggering global fears of a nuclear war in the not so distant future! Short of being fully wiped out from the very face of the earth through the aforesaid blinding passions of riches and excesses, the unbridled armament race among the nations has the potential of promising a veritable Hell on Earth for those of us- the hapless common humans- who are condemned to live amidst all these dangers.

The multilateral system, forged after the Second World War, is bedevilled by multiple crises and it seems incapable of providing effective solutions to the manifold challenges of global governance- poverty and rising inequality;environmental degradation; the arms race and the quest for nuclear weapons; internal conflicts and terrorism; racism and xenophobia, national chauvinism and Islamophobia, etc. International institutions and organizations are designed in such a way that these works to protect the entrenched interests of the Big Nations, rather than seeking to sub serve the larger cause of global justice and equity. These organizations largely ignore the real concerns of the poorer nations when they raise their experiences of political injustice and  colonial exploitation. 

Monday, October 23, 2017

The Rohingya Exodus and India's Policy

A Panel Discussion 

Peace and Justice Forum, a student-run Discussion Forum at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, recently organized a Panel Discussion on the ongoing refugee crisis in India's neighbourhood. With hundreds of thousands of people belonging to a minority Muslim faith in the Buddhist-majority Myanmar being suddenly forced to abandon their homes, flee from the land and seek refuge abroad, especially in Bangladesh; the Discussion took place against the backdrop of the evolving national debate in India on the crisis in the region. 


Mr. Siraj, a refugee from the Rohingya community, was one of the Panelists, sharing a searing testimonial of what it means to be a refugee, being forced to abandon one's people and livelihood behind to escape injustice and oppression in the land. He spoke of a time when his grandfather and others of that generation and before could work and live as common citizens in Myanmar with all legal rights and civil protection available to all other citizens in the country, pointing to the enormous change in the fortunes of Rohingyas from being 'citizens' to 'stateless persons' in Myanmar. Two journalists on the Panel- Mr. Prashant Tandon and Mr. Akhlaque Usmani- shared their perspectives on the problem, reflecting on the Rohingya community's travails in recent decades as well as on the debate currently on the issue in the Indian media and government circles. 


As a student of international law and justice, this writer had the pleasure and privilege of chairing the programme that included a lively opinion-sharing,  question-answer session with the audience. In that public conversation, one could argue that international law considerations are potentially important on three distinct sets of issues and concerns in the context of the present problem from the standpoint of (i) ensuring accountability of the perpetrators of the crimes against humanity in Myanmar; (ii) providing immediate humanitarian relief and  assistance to the victims of the forced displacement; and (iii) the duty/responsibility/obligation of States like India to receive refugees even in the absence of a national refugee law.  

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Terrorists, Islamophobes and Our Faith

CURBING VIOLENCE & RETURNING TO ISLAM

No one can deny the fact that terrorism, barbarism and violence are among the “malaise” from which the Islamic world is suffering in today’s fast growing global world. The rush and invested energy to seek and work for material progress has on the other hand brought about the moral and spiritual decline of human beings, including Muslims. They find their spiritual foundations shaken and to further complicate the situation, it is not a secret to anyone that a few Muslim countries have become the greatest producers of drugs and other intoxicants which are exported to African and Asian countries where there exist a majority of Muslim countries, and this despite the fact that Islam condemns the consumption and sales of intoxicants.

Modern psychologists and specialist doctors in the field had discovered that an excess of drugs and other intoxicants lead to terrorism and violence in the various forms they exist. Under these circumstances, the American and European mass-media have caught the golden chance to present the Muslims as a band of terrorists in the late 20th Century for the simple reason of frightening the non-Muslim world and to tarnish the image of Islam. And, during the 1990s, the mass media embarked on an aggressive campaign to accuse the Muslims as barbaric people who are still living in the pre-Islamic age and given to debaucheries by frequently using the connotation “Jihad” in their own distorted comprehension. This campaign of theirs have gained all the more weight at the turn of this new era (the 21st Century) when a so-called or well-planned venture to depict Muslims as terrorists was put into execution with the terrorist attacks of 9/11 (the World Trade Centre and Pentagon Attacks).

Islam's Legacy: Non-violence

The greatest Muslim and non-Muslim historians can bear testimony to the fact that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has never, on any single occasion during his prophetic mission in Mecca or Medina used violence to counteract his enemies’ persecutions, but it can be safely said, without exaggeration, that he was the first leader to have taught “non-violence”. However, today “non-violence” is associated with Gandhi, Martin Luther King or Nelson Mandela when people at large tend to forget the teachings of Islam which are universal. It is equally true to mention that with the present situation, almost all religions in this modern age are in a state of crisis; but Islam being a complete code of life does not lack solutions to the problems of violence affecting society. 

'No' to Aggression; Only self-Defence'

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Islamic Teachings for Social Peace

Alhamdulillah Summa Alhamdulillah, my Rab again gives me the opportunity to continue on the same subject-matter of last Friday’s Sermon.

On Social Welfare 

Furthermore, as Islam teaches us, we must stress on the rights of the poor for we must regard them as our brethrens. Thus, a person should not be deprived of that which he has acquired by the exercise of his talents. The competition which is the result of a divergence in talents and capacities is essential for the progress of the world; but that those who are in possession of the wealth of a nation are bound to allot a certain portion of it, fixed by Islam, towards the welfare of the poor, and to employ the balance towards objects of public utility rather than towards the gratification of personal desires; that is to say, that they ought to prefer the happiness to be derived from the distribution rather than that to be derived from the hoarding or squandering of wealth.

The teachings of Islam stand unique in this respect. Islam recognises and upholds the principle of private ownership, but it also recognises that no man can be rich without a contribution of the labour of others, and it therefore explicitly enjoins that out of the wealth of the rich a portion should be set apart and spent through the government for the welfare of the poor as compensation for the contribution made by the poor towards its production. It also enjoins upon the State the duty of providing for all its people the necessaries of life and the means of instruction.

Foreign Relations 

With regard to international relations, they can never be put on satisfactory basis till it is realised that nations and Government are as much subject to the dominion of morals as individuals. Indeed, most international disputes are the result of the false doctrine which prevails that Governments are not bound to conform to the moral standard expected of individuals. For the peace of the world it is necessary that the subjects of each state should cooperate with their respective Governments. There can be no objection to their taking measures to demand and safeguard their rights, but in so doing they must not adopt a course of conduct which is calculated to disturb the public peace or to undermine the authority of the Government, or which is objectionable from a moral viewpoint.

So long as there are people who believe sincerely in some religion or other, and the world is not composed entirely of men who use religion as a cloak to be donned on ceremonial occasions, religions differences are bound to arise. True harmony would be established only when the world, or the majority of its people, were united by the restrictions of one common faith.

Inter-Religious Harmony

To bring peace, therefore, to the universe, I have claimed that God Almighty has sent me so that, through me, men may be gathered in the fold of one faith and thus find outward and inner peace. Even though, presently man and man is not yet united in one religion, the true religion and way of life, viz., Islam, however, to ensure the improvement of the present conditions of individuals, religions and society at large, the following suggestions are to be observed: