Muslims stage rally in opposition to Islamic State and extremism
THE organiser of a Dublin rally against Islamic State (IS) has expressed his concern that a "small minority" of Irish Muslims are sympathetic to the terror group.
As many as 50 people braved the rainy conditions yesterday and turned out for the 'Not In Our Name' protest against the organisation, which has been responsible to a string of atrocities in the Middle East.
The rally in Dublin's city centre took place a month to the day after the horrific IS massacre in Tunisia, where three Irish people were among the 38 murdered.
Dr Shaykh Umar Al-Qadri, the imam of the Al-Mustafa mosque in Blanchardstown who helped organise yesterday's protest, told the Herald of his fears that some Irish Muslims are becoming radicalised.
"There is a small minority of Irish Muslims who identify with IS, but we need to prevent them from spreading their lies.
"There are silent supporters of extremism. We must isolate all those who do not condemn terrorism and who choose to remain silent. I believe that anyone who remains silent on these terrorist activities is somehow supporting terrorism."
He said it is "dangerous" not to speak out against IS "because we're leaving space there for the radicals to radicalise youngsters and use that breeding ground".
Invitations to take part in the demonstration were distributed around the country, but Dr Al-Qadri said three people handed them back.
"Some three individuals said: 'We are Isil, are you going to protest against us?' We as Muslims must condemn these people," he said.
Dr Al-Qadri said IS must be denounced throughout the world and particularly by the "vast majority" of peaceful Muslims.
"Extremism and violence have no place in Islam, it is not justified at all. Our Prophet Muhammad warned us against violence and extremism."
Yesterday's demonstration took place under the banner of the Muslim Peace and Integration Council.
It's a month since crazed IS gunman Seifeddine Rezgui (23) murdered dozens of tourists at the Tunisian resort of Sousse.
He opened fire on the beach and in a hotel before he was himself shot dead by local security forces.
Co Meath mum Lorna Carty and husband and wife Laurence and Martina Hayes, from Co Westmeath, were among the murdered.
IS came to international notoriety in 2014 when it seized large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq. It has become notorious for its barbaric kidnapping and killing of its prisoners, including westerners.