– The Islamic group described the threats to Christians as ‘despicable’

– Group’s director insists that Islam is a religion of love and not hate

– Charges fellow Muslims on some teachings of Prophet Muhammad (SAW)

Muslims across the country have been asked to protect Christians against the new threat by Al-Barnawi, the new Boko Haram leader. This counsel was given by the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), via a statement issued by its director, Ishaq Akintola, who described the Boko Haram leader’s threat as despicable, and stressed that it came from a twisted mind.

Christians formed a circle around Muslims as they prayed at the Occupy NASS venue recently. The newly-announced Boko Haram leader had accused his predecessor, Shekarau of killing fellow Muslims, declaring that he would not follow that path as he would kill Christians instead. The Muslim group has now issued the statement to quell such reports and asked Muslims to show solidarity towards Christians in their neighbourhood.

“The new leader of Boko Haram insurgents, Abu Mus’ab Al-Barnawi, has called for the killing of Christians and the blowing up of churches. “The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) expresses total bewilderment at the depth of barbarism in the recent hate speech emanating from the leadership of Boko Haram. It is totally despicable and exceptionally criminal to target fellow products of the Adamic chromosome for annihilation. We have no doubt that this call could only have come from a twisted mind.

“Islam is love, not hatred. Islam gives life, not death. It builds and does not destroy. The Glorious Qur’an only allows Muslims to fight in self-defence (Qur’an 2:190). It forbids unjust and unlawful killing (Qur’an 6:151). It compares anyone who kills his fellow man to one who kills all homo sapiens (Qur’an 5:32). “We remind the Boko Haram coercion ideologues of the moderate posture of the Glorious Qur’an towards non-Muslims. Qur’an 2:256 says there should be no compulsion in religion (Laa ikraahun fil diin). “Qur’an 10:99 completely sweeps the carpet off the feet of agents of belligerence as it declares, ‘So you forcefully compel people to believe in Allah? But they would all have believed if Allah had wanted it so!’,” the message obtained by Daily Post read in part. Speaking about the differences in the faiths, Akintola stated further that, “Our differences in matters of faith are therefore part of the deliberate and grand design of the Divine Creator. Allah also affirms in Qur’an 11:118 that there would still have been differences even if the whole world follows a single religion. So what is special about belonging to a particular religion if we do not share love?

“This is why Allah reminded Prophet Muhammad to limit his mission to reminding people and never to make any attempt at controlling people’s lives (Qur’an 88:21 – 22).

“MURIC charges Muslims all over the world to limit their religious zeal to the true dictates of Islam as reflected in the verses of the Glorious Qur’an lest they transgress. They should leave those who reject Islam alone. Our hypothesis is that Allah did not give anyone the assignment to punish those who reject Islam “Finally, we urge Muslims in the country to demonstrate solidarity with their Christian neighbours by ensuring that Boko Haram elements are not allowed to launch attacks on Christians in their neighbourhood. We have a duty to defend our Christian neighbours at this critical stage. This is the way to keep Nigeria united.”

To counter the threats by the Boko Haram leader, militants in the Niger Delta region have also declared war on Muslims.

The Niger Delta Revolutionary Crusaders (NDRC), in a statement on Saturday, August 6, warned that Niger Delta youths would launch attack on any Muslim or mosque in the Niger Delta region if Boko Haram kill Christians or burn churches.

According to Vanguard, spokesperson of the militant group, W O I Izon-Ebi, described the mission by the new Boko Haram leader to kill all Christians and burn down all churches as an Islamization plot.