Grand Mufti of Pakistan Questions Criticism of Taliban
Mufti Rafi Usmani, the Grand Mufti of Pakistan, has denied the assertion that the destruction of statues is an un-Islamic act. In a telephone interview with Albalagh E Journal he clarified the Islamic position on this issue. He noted that the Noble Qur'an does tell us about the example of Prophet Ibrahim (alayhi salam) who had destroyed the idols. He also reminded that Prophet Muhammad (Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam) did destroy all the 360 idols in the Ka'ba after the conquest of Makkah.

He however stated that there could be a disagreement among the scholars regarding the priorities and the methods. "There are many evils in the society,"  he said. "And scholars may disagree over which ones need the most attention at a given time." Similarly he said that scholars could disagree over the particular approach taken to eradicate an evil. Some might question whether the action would alienate the Buddhists nations in Southeast Asia at a critical time for Afghanistan. However, he knew that the Taliban had taken the decisions in light of guidance from their respected scholars.

The Grand Mufti of Pakistan also questioned the right of the world leaders to criticize Taliban. "The people who nuked Hiroshima and Nagasaki, who killed hundreds of thousands of people in Iraq, and are killing people in Afghanistan through the recently imposed sanctions, how strange that they should be raising their voice in support of stone statues?"

Mufti Rafi Usmani further said that it is a mistake to think that the Taliban are a bunch of ignorant people. "I know them personally. They themselves are not ignorant in Shariah. They also have scholars among them and their decisions are based on the guidance from their respected scholars."

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