Illinois’ largest Muslim organization, the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago (CIOGC), is deeply saddened by the horrific violence perpetrated against innocent lives in Istanbul, Turkey yesterday, resulting in the killing of 41 and injuring of 239 individuals. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families impacted by this atrocity. We offer heartfelt condolences to the people of Turkey, along with friends and families of the deceased, and pray for the full and speedy recovery of all those injured.
As Muslims, we are immeasurably grieved by the timing of this heinous and cowardly act of terrorism during the last ten days of Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting. During a period when hundreds of millions of Muslims around the world are engaged in deep prayer, reflection and thoughts of forgiveness throughout their days and nights, this lack of respect for the sanctity of life is indeed incomprehensible and unforgivable.
That the initial findings indicate involvement by the so called “Islamic State” reinforces the unequivocal rejection of ISIS by Muslims all over the world as representing Islamic values or principles in any way. This is further evidence that more innocent Muslims have fallen victim to ISIS violence than any other faith group.
“During these blessed days of Ramadan, we pray for the victims’ families as well as the Turkish government in restoring safety and security throughout their land,” stated Dr. Mohammed Kaiseruddin, CIOGC Chair. He further added that, “We acknowledge the disproportionate burden that the people of Turkey have assumed due to the Syrian crisis and are extremely grateful for their unprecedented hospitality towards the refugees. We urge world leaders to work together to resolve this serious humanitarian disaster.”