Cleric goes unpunished for comments!

October 27, 2006

NO action will be taken against Australia’s top Muslim cleric for likening scantily-dressed women to uncovered meat and saying they’re responsible for sexual attacks.

sheik al hilaly

A group of senior Muslims from Sydney’s Lakemba Mosque met last night for four hours to determine the fate of Sheik Taj al-Din al-Hilaly, Macquarie Radio reported.

Sheik al-Hilaly outraged Muslim community leaders and federal and state politicans with his comments, which he made during a Ramadan sermon to 500 worshippers in Sydney last month.

Excerpts from a recording of the 17-minute sermon appeared in The Australian newspaper yesterday.

The Sheik alluded to rapes in 2000 where four women were separately gang-raped by a group of young Muslim men, including Bilal Skaf, who received a 55-year jail sentence, later reduced.

He said there were women who “sway suggestively” and wore make-up and inappropriate clothes, “and then you get a judge without mercy (rahma) and gives you 65 years,” The Australian reported.

“If you take out uncovered meat and place it outside on the street, or in the the garden or in the park, or in the backyard without a cover, and the cats come and eat it … whose fault is it, the cats or the uncovered meat,” the sheik asked.

The uncovered meat is the problem.”

“If she was in her room, in her home, in her hijab (head scarf), no problem would have occurred.”

Tom Zrika, from the Lebanese Muslim Association, which runs the Lakemba Mosque, said the Muslim leaders who met to discuss the Sheik’s fate were satisfied with the Sheik’s explanation of his comments.

“The board has subsequently met with the mufti (the Sheik) of Australia,” Mr Zrika told Macquarie Radio last night.

“A thorough explanation of the contents of the sermon, the subject of complaint, was given to the board.

“The board is satisfied with the notion that certain statements made by the mufti was misinterpreted.”

The Sheik will miss a few sermons today as he prepares to face the media for the first time over the statements, Macquarie Radio reported.

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