Brotherhood Ideologue Qaradawi Expelled From Islamic Council

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Groups led by Muslim Brotherhood ideologue Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi have been expelled from the International Islamic Council for Da'wah and Relief. The Cairo based council, which performs Islamic proselytizing and charity work, expelled Qaradawi's International Union of Muslim Scholars on the grounds they mixed religion and politics and supported terrorism. The council has over 80 organizations in its ranks and performs work all over the world.

The council made the ruling in a session on Tuesday, alongside senior figures from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.  The council is headed by the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, the most respected authority in the Sunni Islamic world and one of the world's oldest universities.

Qaraqawi's group was expelled alongside ten other organizations. These included the London based Islamic Relief Worldwide. Last month Islamic Relief was listed as a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates, along with the Muslim Brotherhood and affiliated organizations such as the U.S. based Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim American Society (MAS).

Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi is the leading ideologue of the Muslim Brotherhood. He guides members on religious matters and his interpretation of Islam is followed by the group. He has spoken out in the past in favor of female genital mutilation, on which subject he later claimed to have changed his mind, and wife beating. He has been filmed calling for the next holocaust against Jews to be perpetrated by Muslims and has personally expressed his desire to take part in such an event.

In 2004, over 2,500 Muslim intellectuals from 23 countries signed a petition to the UN calling on world governments to form a treaty to ban the use of religion as a cloak for terrorism and calling on the Security Council to set up a tribunal to try "theologians of terror." Qaradawi was mentioned by name as "providing a religious cover for terrorism." He was included on the list among other "sheikhs of death" who "give Islam a bad name and foster hatred among civilizations."

Qaradawi currently resides in Qatar, where the International Union of Muslim Scholars is based. Since the removal of former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, who is a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood, relations between Egypt and Qatar have soured considerably over the latter's support for the Brotherhood.

On Sunday an arrest warrant was put out by Interpol for Qaradawi. The arrest warrant was sent out on a red alert at the request of Egypt. He is charged with "agreement, incitement and assistance to commit intentional murder, helping the prisoners to escape, arson, vandalism and theft."

41 other red alerts were put out on other Muslim Brotherhood leaders at the same time. 

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David Harris

David Harris is the editor in chief of Clarion Project.