Philippines: Government tries to ease tensions by allowing Islamic law in southern area, achieves the opposite
Thailand should take note, asÂ a peace proposalÂ aimed at ending the jihad in that country’s southern provinces also includes the implementation of Sharia law. Not only is there no guarantee that it will help end the violence in the short term, it presents a continuing spiral of problems in the long run, from the treatment of non-Muslims to the inevitable conflict of parallel legal systems in one country. “All-out war looms between Muslim and Christian factions,” by Cyril Payen, Solomon Kane and Louis Massie forÂ France 24, from JW
In the southern Philippines, fighting between religious militias has left at least 100 dead in the past month. An attempt by the government to ease tensions by allowing the dominant Muslims to enforce Sharia law has only resulted in more violence.
Words of wisdom from the North China Herald in 1867, at a time when Muslims in certain parts of China had risen up in Jihad rebellion against the central authority:
“If politeness and ceremony be observed toward Mohammedans, they imagine they are feared and become arrogant; but in showing severity and rudeness, they are impressed with fear and respect, and they are supple and manageable.”
–North China Herald,1867.
In Marawi City, the “Islamic Pearl” of the Philippines, Sharia law is the only rule. This was a concession by the government to Muslims aimed at easing the tensions between their community and Christians in the southern Philippines.
The move has had the opposite effect. For the past five weeks, the conflict between the army and Muslim rebels has escalated.Â Religious violence in the southern Philippines has left 100 people dead and 400,000 displaced in the past month.
The government has deployed 70% of its armed forces in the zone.
* Â This is nothing short of a betrayal. The government has an obligation to protect the non-Muslims who live in those areas. Allowing sharia to be implemented does just the opposite. No non-Muslim should be put at the mercy of sharia law.