Monday, November 20, 2017

IPT Blog: ISNA President Addresses Jamaat-e-Islami Crowd In India

Steven Emerson, Executive Director
November 20, 2017

ISNA President Addresses Jamaat-e-Islami Crowd In India

by John Rossomando  •  Nov 17, 2017 at 6:13 pm
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The leader of the largest Muslim group in the United States, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), addressed a radical Asian Islamist group during a trip to India.
ISNA President Azhar Azeez spoke to India's Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) during a visit to Hyderabad. ISNA posted an announcement of Azeez's visit on its Facebook page Friday.
Jamaat-e-Islami is an Asian version of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood. Its leaders advocate laws that criminalize blasphemy against Islam. Its constitution calls for "the reconstruction of society" and the formation of an Islamic State. It tells Muslims to avoid going to "un-Islamic" courts to settle dispute except under "compelling necessity."
Founder Maulana Maududi declared that insufficiently Islamic regimes should be destroyed and replaced by an Islamic State and eventually a caliphate. Maududi inspired Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini and ISIS's self-appointed Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Still, Azeez used a Twitter post to show that he met with Jamaat-e-Islami's leadership in Delhi. ISNA was founded by Muslim Brotherhood members in the United States. The group has tried to distance itself from that past and present itself as the representative of mainstream American Muslims. But its conferences have featured radical Islamist speakers, and this year, it tossed a gay-friendly group called Muslim for Progressive Values from its annual gathering.
In Asia, Jamaat-e-Islami's leaders encourage boycotts against the Ahmadiyya Muslim minority, which led to Ahmadiyyas being evicted from their homes and fired from their jobs.
Jamaat-e-Islami branches in Kashmir and Bangladesh have been tied to terrorist activities.
Bangladesh executed top former Jamaat-e-Islami leaders for war crimes committed during its 1971 war of independence from Pakistan.
JIH supported terrorism against American troops and in the Middle East. It praised "the historic victory against Israeli aggression in Lebanon by the Hezbollah led Lebanese National resistance" in a March 2007 statement in conjunction with other Muslim groups.
Azeez's speech to a Jamaat branch, and his desire to promote it, reinforces the perception that ISNA's attempts at moderation are superficial.
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