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Hataman condemns terror attacks during Ramadan

BANGSAMORO NEWS UPDATES • 17:00 PM Wed Jul 6, 2016
Edwin Fernandez
ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman

COTABATO CITY -- Regional Gov. Mujiv Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) on Tuesday night has condemned terror attacks in Muslim countries and other parts of the world. Hataman issued the statement on the eve of Eud'l Fitr, the end of fasting month. These are not the first attacks committed by extremists and terrorists who claim to do acts of terror in the name of Islam, nor these will be the last, Hataman said. We face this reality with a grave self-awareness, knowing that the ummah will have to face the recurring question of Islam's relevance in a world that longs for peace and justice, he said in a statement Tuesday afternoon. On June 28, 38 soldiers who were about to break their fast were killed in a wave of suicide bombings in Mukalla, Yemen. The attackers were believed to be posing as iftar distributors for the breaking of the fast. On the same day, news of yet another attack spread online, this time an attack on Istanbul's Akaturk Airport. The attack left 45 people dead and more than 200 injured. On July 1, seven men opened fire on a bakery in Bangladesh. They took several dozen people hostages and killed 28 people. On July 3, Muslims breaking the fast were specifically targeted by a suicide bombing that killed at least 215 people in Baghdad, Iraq. On July 4, a suicide bomber detonated his vest outside the Prophet's Mosque in Medina, Saudi Arabia, one of Islam's holiest sites, as thousands of Muslim worshippers prepared for the sunset prayers. As Muslims, a heavy burden rests on our shoulders as we grieve and seek justice for the deaths of our brethren, Hataman said. The weight we carry is made heavier by the need to amplify Islam's message of compassion and mercy over those whose message contain nothing but violence and pain. Hataman said all true Muslims should not be silenced by these barbaric acts. We will not be silenced. We condemn these crimes to the highest degree and with utmost conviction, as we continue to struggle and strive to live up to the ideals of Islam, especially as the Most Holy Month of Ramadan draws to a clos, he said. As Ramadan ends, Hataman urged Muslims to stand together against all terror actions, not only against Muslims but against humanity. In this time of renewal, may our courage be renewed as we face a world that constantly challenges our faith and may we stand together with the rest of humanity, united in action against terror and fear, he said. Back home, the Abu Sayyaf that operates in ARMM provinces of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, remain a threat to the country's security. The extremist group is still holding a Norwegian kidnap victim they threatened to behead if the ransom demand is not met.

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