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Abstract

"The tragic events of September 11, 2001 in New York, March 11, 2004 in Madrid and July 7, 2005 in London leave no one indifferent. Of course, one should be aware of other attacks, such as in Riyadh in 1995, Dhahran in 1996, Nairobi and Dar es Salaam in 1998, Yemen in 2000, Bali in 2002, and Istanbul in 2003. The attacks in New York, Madrid, and London are the most disturbing to Islam-West relations however. Muslims around the world, especially, have been shocked by the fact that the perpetrators of these terrorist attacks claimed to have acted in the name of Islam. No reasonable person can accept that such violence against innocent people be carried out in his/her name. So Muslims across the globe have condemned the terrorist attack in New York, the massacre in Madrid, and the terror in London in the strongest terms possible.

Nevertheless, many people claim that is not enough. Muslims should do more to persuade European public opinion that their faith is worthy of respect and that their stay in Europe is welcome.

Leaving aside those in Europe who will remain Islamophobic in all circumstances, Muslims must realize that the general feeling about their faith in Europe nowadays is not favorable. European Muslims must take the issue of violence in the name of Islam very seriously, not because some people hate Islam and Muslims, but because the act of violence, the act of terror, the act of hatred in the name of Islam, is wrong. It is against Muslim beliefs. It is against Muslim interests in the world, especially in Europe.

European Muslims must develop a program for anti-violence. They must fully and unequivocally proclaim to the whole world the non-violent nature of their faith and teach their children that the right way to success in this world, and to salvation in the hereafter, is not through argument of force, but through force of peaceful argument."

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