One of the important objectives of Islam is to safeguard people’s life, property and honor. It is in this light that Islam prohibited aggression against innocent people, Muslims and non-Muslims alike. The Qur’an and the Sunnah are abundant with provisions that crystallize and emphasize this principle. In the Sunnah we read that a woman entered Hell Fire because she tied a cat until it starved. Then, what will be the fate of those who shed innocent people’s blood and violate their rights?

Shedding more light on the issue of violence, intolerance, and aggression against innocent civilians, the late eminent Muslim scholar Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi states:

No doubt, aggression against innocent people is a grave sin and a heinous crime, irrespective of the victim’s religion, country, or race. No one is permitted to commit such crime, for Allah, Most High, abhors aggression. Unlike Judaism, Islam does not hold a double-standard policy in safeguarding human rights.
Following, I would like to highlight some relevant Islamic principles based on the Glorious Qur’an and Sunnah:
1. Islam Forbids Aggression Against Innocent People
Islam does not permit aggression against innocent people, whether the aggression is against life, property, or honor, and this ruling applies to everyone, regardless of post, status and prestige. In Islam, as the state’s subject is addressed with Islamic teachings, so is the ruler or caliph; he is not allowed to violate people’s rights, lives, honor, property, etc.

In the Farewell Pilgrimage, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) declared the principle that people’s lives, property, and honor are inviolable until the Day of Judgment. This ruling is not restricted to Muslims; rather, it includes non-Muslims who are not fighting Muslims. Even in case of war, Islam does not permit killing those who are not involved in fighting, such as women, children, the aged, and the monks who confine themselves to worship only.

this shouldn’t raise any wonder, for Islam is a religion that prohibits aggression even against animals. Ibn `Umar, may Allah be pleased with them both, quote the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, as saying: “A woman (was made to) enter (Hell) Fire because of a cat which she tied, neither giving it food nor setting it free to eat from the vermin of the earth.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
If such is Islamic ruling concerning aggressive acts against animals, then, with greater reason, the punishment is bond to be severe when human being happens to be the victim of aggression, torture and terrorism.
2. Individual Responsibility
In Islam, every one is held accountable for his own acts, not others’. No one bears the consequences of others’ faults, even his close relatives. This is the ultimate form of justice, clarified in the Glorious Qur’an, as Allah, Most High, says, (Or hath he not had news of what is in the books of Moses and Abraham who fulfilled (the commandments): That no laden one shall bear another’s load.) (An-Najm 53: 36-38)
therefore, it’s very disgusting to see some people – who are Muslims by name– launching aggression against innocent people and taking them as scapegoats for any disagreement they have with the state’s authority!! What is the crime of the common people then?! Murder is one of heinous crimes completely abhorred in Islam, to the extent that some Muslim scholars hold the opinion that the repentance of the murderer will not be accepted by Allah, Most High. In this context, we recall the Glorious Qur’anic verse that reads, (…if any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole peoplee.) (Al-Ma’idah 5: 32)
3. Ends Do not Justify Means
In Islam, the notion “End justifies the means” has no place at all. It is not allowed to attain good aims through evil means, and, therefore, alms collected from unla
wful avenues are not halal (lawful). In this context, the Messenger of Allah, (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Surely, Allah is Good and never accepts but what is good.”
thus, in Shari`ah, with all its sources– the Glorious Qur’an, the Sunnah, consensus of Muslim jurists– aggression and violation of human rights are completely forbidden.
Besides, it is the duty of the Muslim scholars to do their utmost to guide the perplexed people to the straight and upright path.

Also, Dr. MuzammilSiddiqi, President of the Fiqh Council ofNorth America, adds:

The Islamic position as regards non-Muslims is that they should recognize Allah’s Oneness and Prophet Muhammad as Allah’s Final Prophet. They should accept Islam to live happily and successfully in this world and to be saved in the Hereafter. It is Muslims’ duty to give them this message clearly, but without any coercion or intolerance. If others accept this message it is good for them, but if they do not accept, Muslims should still treat them with kindness and gentleness and leave the final judgment to Allah.
In our enthusiasm for da`wah, we should not be intolerant and aggressive towards others. However, in our politeness and civility we should also not give up our mission and message. We should not be intimidated to become quiet and we should not feel shy to tell the truth.

We must know that Islam is Allah’s way to salvation. Islamic message is unique, authentic and divine. Islam is for the whole world and all people are invited to accept this message. It is our duty to convey this message in the most beautiful and effective manner. We should be the witnesses of Allah to the world by our words and our deeds to all human beings.