Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Ulemas Council's (MUI) chair for fatwa, Asrorun Ni'am Sholeh, sought support for the independence of Palestine through zakat (obligatory alms), infak (donation), and sedekah (voluntary charity) distribution.

"Muslims are encouraged to support the struggle of Palestine," he said while delivering a fatwa (Islamic ruling) recommendation here on Friday.

He informed that zakat collected from Indonesian Muslims could be used for supplying humanitarian aid and meeting urgent needs in Palestine.

To this end, he invited the National Alms Agency (Baznas) and zakat management institutions (LAZ) to collect zakat, infak, and sedekah to help the struggle of the Muslims in Palestine.

He explained that, essentially, zakat funds must be distributed to mustahik (recipients) who are located around the muzakki (givers).

However, he said that during an emergency, zakat is allowed to be distributed to mustahik who are located in farther locations, such as the people of Palestine.

In its Fatwa Number 83 of 2023 concerning the Law on Support for Palestine, the MUI has recommended Muslims' support for the Palestinian struggle.

The support includes conducting movements to raise humanitarian funds, praying for victory, and performing Salat al-Gha'ib, or absentee funeral prayers, for Palestinian martyrs.

In addition, the government has been urged to take firm steps to help the Palestinian struggle.

The steps include carrying out diplomacy at the United Nations to stop the war and push for sanctions on Israel, sending humanitarian aid, and consolidating the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) states to pressure Israel to stop its aggression.

Sholeh appealed to Muslims to avoid transactions or the use of Israeli products and the products of those who are affiliated with Israel and support colonialism and Zionism.

"Support for Palestine's independence is currently mandatory," he underscored.

He added that the fatwa was discussed as a form of MUI's responsibility in responding to Israeli aggression against Palestine, which it considers a threat to humanity.

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Translator: Erlangga Bregas, Raka Adji
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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