Instead of mobilising world moderate opinion against Islamic State (IS) terrorism through GMM, the Najib government has failed to stand up against ISIS-minded official preachers like the “kafir harbi” statement by the Pahang mufti

Yesterday, eight people were injured after a hand grenade was tossed into the porch of a nightspot at the IOI Boulevard in Puchong.

Later, a Facebook page linked to the Islamic State (IS) reportedly claimed responsibility, but the owner of the pub disputed this IS claim.

In the early hours of this morning, 8,300 kilometres away in Istanbul, three suicide bombers opened fire then blew themselves up in Europe’s third-busiest international airport, killing 36 people and wounding close to 150 in what Turkey's prime minister said appeared to have been an attack by Islamic State militants.

The attack bore similarities to a suicide bombing by Islamic State militants at Brussels airport in March which killed 16 people. A coordinated attack also targeted a rush-hour metro train, killing a further 16 people in the Belgian capital.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said the attack should serve as a turning point in the global fight against militant groups.

He said: "The attack, which took place during the holy month of Ramadan, shows that terrorism strikes with no regard for faith and values.

"The bombs that exploded in Istanbul today could have gone off at any airport in any city around the world."

Malaysians cannot agree more with Erdogan’s condemnation of the violence and terrorism at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, especially with the increasing foreboding that Malaysia may not be spared from the horrific and senseless acts of terror perpetrated by Islamic State (IS) terrorists, using the name of Islam but actually committing a gross blasphemy of Islam.

This is a real anomaly.

Whether the Islamic State was responsible or not for the hand-grenade incident in Puchong early yesterday, why has Malaysia got caught in the coils of global terrorism of IS?

What is even more serious, instead of mobilising world moderate opinion against Islamic State (IS) terrorism through the Prime Minister’s own brainchild, the Global Movemene of Moderates (GMM), the Najib government has failed to stand up against ISIS-minded official preachers like the “kafir harbi” statement by the Pahang mufti.

In various international fora, including his speeches at the UN General Assembly, Najib had made the stirring call on “moderates of all countries, of all religions to take back the centre, to reclaim the agenda for peace and pragmatism, and to marginalize and reject extremism in all its forms because the real divide is not between East and West or between developed and developing worlds or between Muslims, Christians and Jews. It is between moderates and extremists of all religions”.

What is the use of Najib preaching in international forums on the three main ingredients of wasatiyyah – justice, balance and excellence – when every day, there are ample examples in Malaysia of the contemptuous disregard or violation of these values?

In this connection, I call on the Prime Minister to give serious consideration to the to views of Catholic Bishop Emeritus Paul Tan Chee Ing who described Pahang mufti Abdul Rahman Osman's designation of those who opposed Islam as kafir harbi as an “ominous development which, if not swiftly repudiated, constitutes a threat to national security”.

Paul Tan said: “I know of no statement in recent years, not even the threat to burn the Bible, that constitutes a clear and present danger to national security as this designation by the Pahang mufti as kafir harbi all those who are opposed to Islam.

“Prior to this, it was thought that only those who fight against Muslims in lands Muslims rule or from territories contiguous with Islamic territories are designated kafir harbi.

“But now with what the Pahang mufti has said, even those who merely oppose the application of hudud for offences against syariah law are lumped with those who wage rebellion or aggression against Muslims

“This is an expansive interpretation of a bellicose term which serves notice to large sections of non-Muslims and Muslims alike in Malaysia that it is legitimate for defenders of the faith to kill and maim them because they are kafir harbi.”

Bishop Paul said that it is incumbent upon those in authority in Malaysia to denounce this interpretation as a threat to national security because of its potential to foment violence against law-abiding citizens.’

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah