The MJC said it was a show of sympathy at the barbaric and senseless killing of an innocent member of the Verulam community. The president of the council, Shaykh Irafaan Abrahams, and his deputy, Maulana Abdul Khaliq Ebrahim Allie, visited the mosque.
The council said the delegation was warmly welcomed by the leader of the Shia community, Maulana Aftab Haider, and other members of the community. Shaykh Irafaan Abrahams expressed concern over the attack.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms the desecration of the Imam Hussein Masjid and the burning of the noble Qur’an and Islamic literature.
“There is a necessity for tolerance and peace in all our communities, and the incitement to violence, hate and intolerance is unacceptable in Islam.
“Intolerance and hate are unacceptable within a pluralistic society like South Africa, where freedom of association and belief is guaranteed by the constitution. It is a common fact that historic differences between Shia and Sunni do exist within the community, and in a very matured and conciliatory discussion, the leaders acknowledged that this should not lead to hatred and violence used by elements who seek to divide our communities along sectarian lines. After a productive meeting, we visited the home of the deceased and expressed condolences with the widow and the family,” he said.
Other organisations have also called for the implementation of the Cape Accord. It embraces the spirit of the Amman Message signed in 2005 by more than 500 leading Muslim scholars worldwide, and aimed to capture Islam’s core values of compassion, mutual respect, tolerance, acceptance and freedom of religion. The Cape Accord calls on communities to unite against hate speech and discord, and to promote intra-Muslim tolerance and co-operation.