(Part 1)

Protection of Refugees in Shariah and International Law

Couple of days ago, it was the 5th memory of Alan Kurdi’s tragic drowning while trying, with his Syrian refugee family, to cross the sea to Europe.

The image of the toddler’s body washed up on a Turkish beach was very painful and led to a worldwide outcry about refugees’ miserable conditions.

This memory reminds us also about the US administration decisions few years ago to ban refugees from certain Muslim countries, and all what this has led to, i.e. chaos, rebuke, condemnations and protests sweeping the entire country.

I find myself gripped with deep thoughts on how all this stands in a complete opposite to what the concept of refugee itself means.

Pressing Questions

My thoughts resulted in posing these questions: What is wrong with being a refugee? Why is it used as a means of stoking fear and panic?

Why is refugee crisis now used as campaign card to gain votes? And why is it being tabled as a political agenda for further appeasement to a certain voting bloc?

There is no doubt that this ban flies in the face of many well-established international norms and conventions; it also contravenes noble ethics and decorum expected from a country that poses itself as a flag-bearer of human rights.

Refugees in History

Throughout history, there have been events that have led to the exodus of people from one country to another. These events include outbreak of wars, internal strives, military coups, famine, natural disasters, etc. In addition to leaving their countries, people fled homes and ran away from violent situations; thus becoming refugees in other countries.

Also throughout history, nations have opened their doors, embraced refugees and welcomed displaced people. They have also tried to provide them with some kind of protection and what you can describe as “alternative homes”.

Economic migrants leave their countries to seek better living standards and better job opportunities. However, some refugees have to leave their homes to escape persecution, war or natural disaster. 

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