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Jordan: Fatwa Against Joining ISIS

(Apr. 16, 2015) On April 13, 2015, the General Iftaa Department of the Kingdom of Jordan issued a legal opinion, or fatwa, based on Sharia law prohibiting Jordanians from joining the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS). The Iftaa Department is a part of the government that is tasked with issuing legal opinions related to Sharia law.

The fatwa declares ISIS to be a terrorist group, making it unlawful for individuals in Jordan to join the group. Individuals are also prohibited from joining other terrorist groups that shed blood, proclaim Muslims as infidels, and violate people’s honor and property, because these acts violate the teachings of Islam. The fatwa asserts that Islam promotes tolerance and forgiveness, calls for mercy and love, and rejects terror and extremism, and it declares whoever joins such terrorist organizations has disobeyed God and his Messenger and strayed from the straight path and is manifestly and clearly in error. (Fatwa No. 3065, Jordanian Government website (in Arabic).)

The fatwa cites in support of its ruling a number of verses of the Koran and pronouncements of the Prophet Mohammad as reported by the most trusted chroniclers of his traditions. For example, it cites the pronouncement in which the Prophet Mohammed said “[d]o not kill an old man, an infant, a child, or a woman …” (3 SUNAN ABU DAWOUD, No. 2614, at 61 (in Arabic)) and the pronouncement in which the Prophet Mohammed said the killing of a person is among the most grievous of sins (5 SAHIH AL-BUKHARI, No. 5632, at 2230, (in Arabic)).