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European Council for Fatwa and Research (ECFR)'s Visual Map

  • Promotes militant Islam and justifies jihad for Muslim youths
  • “Martyrdom operations are not suicide and should not be deemed as unjustifiable means of endangering one’s life.”

Established in March 1997 in the United Kingdom by the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe, the European Council for Fatwah and Research (ECFR) is a private foundation whose stated objectives are fourfold: (1) to unify Europe's differing views of Fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence); (2) to apply Fiqh in European societies where Muslims live; (3) to conduct studies of various issues related to Islamic Law (Sharia) in Europe; and (4) to guide "Muslims in Europe generally and youth particularly, through spreading authentic concepts of Islam and its noble principles."

The fourth precept refers specifically to the promotion of militant Islam, with its justifications for jihad and terrorism, among young European Muslims. The World Assembly of Muslim Youth, which was shut down in the U.S. because of its role in funding terrorism, promotes ECFR's mission on one of its websites.

In ECFR’s view, all Muslims should live not under the laws enacted by legislators and democratic institutions, but under Sharia, which “cannot be amended to conform to changing human values and standards,” and which represents “the absolute norm to which all human values and conduct must conform.”

One of ECFR's leaders, Sheik Faysal Mawlawi, issued a fatwah (religious legal ruling) following a Palestinian suicide bombing in Israel that killed forty people, including four Americans. His fatwah asserted that "martyrdom operations are not suicide [which Islam purportedly prohibits] and [thus] should not be deemed as unjustifiable means of endangering one's life." "Whoever is killed in such missions is a martyr," explained Mawlawi. "[M]ay Allah bless him with high esteem."

Shortly thereafter, at a Stockholm, Sweden conference on jihad, ECFR President Yousef Al-Qaradhawi agreed that "martyrdom operations … are not in any way included in the framework of prohibited terrorism, even if the victims include some civilians."

ECFR does not acknowledge Israel's right to exist, and opposes any negotiated compromises with the Jewish state.



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