Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri urges the US Government to stop 'Burn Quran Day' in a letter to President Obama

The proposed 'Burn the Quran Day' by a small Florida church has sparked outrage worldwide and hurt the feelings of 1.5 billion Muslims around the world. This disrespectful act will not just cause harm to the Muslim community around the world but it will create divisions, hatred and break the fragile relations between the Muslims and the west. Worldwide peacemaking efforts, culture of dialogue, process of cohesion and integration between different religion and communities will be affected badly.

A leading Muslim authority Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri, who issued a historic 600-page Fatwa on Terrorism in March 2010 has strongly condemned this action and urges the US Government to intervene to stop the burning of Quran at any cost in a letter to President Barack Obama. He said that individuals or groups should never be allowed to play with the world peace.

In the letter Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri wrote that "If this event is allowed to take place it will not be less than ‘9/11’ in the sense of its consequences and after-effects."

He wrote that "It will not only hurt the feelings of 1.5 billion Muslims but also of billions of peace-loving people belonging to different religions and cultures of the world. Such an act is deeply offensive and will increase divisions and hatred."

Dr Qadri wrote that " A handful of individuals, it does not matter whether they are related to mosque or church, cannot be given the right to flippantly play about with peaceful co-existence and their so-called sentiments cannot be preferred over global peace."

"If we allow ‘Burn the Qur’an Day’ from happening in our time, it will leave a most terrible legacy for generations to come."

The letter highlighted the quotes from President Obama's speech in Cairo and requested him that it is now time to practically show that "America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition."

He also wrote that "Such an action should be stopped by the Government of the United States at any cost; allowing it does not fall within the scope of freedom of expression and it is also against the concept of basic human rights."

He pointed out that “Denial of the Holocaust is regarded as a crime in many countries and there is an agreement between many nations that such a ban is not against freedom of speech and freedom of expression because it infringes the sentiments of a religious community.”

He asked President Obama that “It is now time to ensure that freedom of speech does not transgress the boundaries of hate, crime and incitement."

Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri wrote about his efforts and about the Fatwa on Terrorism that "This fatwa has also clarified many concepts, including suicide bombings and jihad, as well as highlighted and clarified the rights of non-Muslims in Islam. These concepts have been misinterpreted by the terrorist groups, which is why they exploit the younger generation. This fatwa has laid down the gauntlet to de-radicalize Muslim youth the world over, but I fear that only one such step of burning the Qur’an in any Western country will not only neutralize the effect of this fatwa and other anti-extremism efforts by Muslim countries and leaders, but also take us back many years in our struggle against extremism and terrorism.”