Children’s Rights in Islam

Barack Obama not only preaches the Muslim world to “open hearts…non-voilence….love thy neighor” words for the Zionist entity – he also used similar sentiments about abortion in his recent speech at the University of Notre Dame (where Dr. Tariq Ramazan was not allowed to join his teaching assignment under the Jewish Lobby’s pressure in 2004).

According to the ‘National Right to Life’ – nearly 50 million abortions have taken place since abortion was legalized in 1973 as result of US Supreme Court decision in the case of Roe v. Wade. It’s interesting to note that while Zionist lobby groups are always on guard to protect the ‘Jewish holocaust’ – they love to support the Holocaust of unborn babies through abortion for the economic benefits. In India, 7,000 unborn girls are killed per day through abortion and by other means.

In the US – abortion is the second most common surgical procedure, next to tonsillectomy. Annually, over 1.5 million abortions are perfomed – A US$14.7 billion industry in 2006. In Britain, abortion was legalized in 1967. In what was Soviet Union, abortions were estimated to be 11 million – among the annual-highest in the world. Romania has the highest abortion rate since abortion was allowed in 1989 – 3 babies of every 4 are aborted.

Islamic faith looks after children’s rights more than any other religion. It gives the ‘right to live’ to every child from the moment he/she is conceived. Holy Qur’an (Al-Maida:140) is very clear on this matter: “Indeed lost are they who have killed their children, from folly without knowledge and have forbidden that which Allah has provided for them, inventing a lie against Allah. They have indeed gone astray and were not guided.” And to protect unborn children from parents’ poverty, Holy Qur’an assures them: “And kill not your children for fear of poverty. We (Allah) provide for them and for you. Surely, the killing of them is a great sin – Al-Isra’:31.”

Islam make it obligatory upon parents to love, feed, guide, and provide the best education possible to their children. Parents are accountable for their childrens’ behavior until they reach the maturity age – after that the child will be judged by Allah for his/her deeds in this world. Islam don’t accepts children as a property of parents, but a trust from Allah.

Islam gives great importance to breast-feeding, which now many western researchers have found to be very healthy for both the child and the mother. Holy Qur’an (Al-Baqarah:233) says: “The mothers shall give suckling to their children for two whole years.”

Dr. Christian Salazar-Volkmann is the former UNICEF representative in Islamic Iran. While in Iran – Dr. Salazar-Volkmann studied women’s and children rights in Islamic Shri’ah. His office in partnership with the most widely read and consulted publication on issues related to refugees, Forced Migration Review, conducted dialogues with Iranian religious and legal experts on issues concerning women and children rights in the Muslim world. As a result, UNICEF Iran contributed two research articles on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – “The rights of refugee women and children in Islam” by Dr. Saeid Rahaei (Mofid University) and “Child Rights and Islam” by Dr. Christian Salazar-Volkmann.

In Islamic Republic of Iran, abortion is not allowed for economic reasons or the so-called “a woman is master of her own body” western logic. However, a woman is allowed to have abortion if a doctor is convinced that pregnancy poses a risk to mother’s life.

Dr. Christian Salazar-Volkmann in his article Child rights and Islam wrote:

“It is important for the worldwide application of child rights to foster deeper understanding about them and Islam. UNICEF has entered into dialogue with Islamic scholars by highlighting congruencies between Islam and international standards. This dialogue started before the adoption of the CRC in 1989. In 1985 a study was undertaken by Al Azhar University in Cairo on child care in Islam. In 2005 a joint report by the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO) and UNICEF underlined common goals in realising children’s rights. The focus of these studies was mainly on social rights, leaving aside the more controversial areas of civil and political rights.

In Iran now, UNICEF is collaborating with Mofid University in Qom in a comprehensive research project: the analysis of the different articles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child from an Islamic perspective. The research is based on the Koran, relevant hadiths, fatwas and other religious and scientific sources and aims at generating and contributing to a comprehensive body of theological guidance and interpretation for Islamic researchers and academics on child rights.

It is not only important that Muslim religious leaders increase their understanding of international child rights standards. The non-Islamic world needs to benefit more from Islamic thinking on this matter. Therefore we must make the most of opportunities for international dialogue between Islamic and non-Islamic, religious and non-religious thinkers, researchers and practitioners on child rights and on the more difficult issue of women’s right.

A greater engagement of Islamic thinkers and researchers with child rights is overdue as Western legal experts and academics have largely dominated international interpretations of human rights norms. There is also rich Islamic thinking on matters related to child rights and social justice which can help to advance the realisation of social rights of children in many countries of the world. International human rights institutions therefore should maximise opportunities for dialogue on children’s and women’s rights. In my experience there is a space for such a dialogue between child rights advocates and Islamic leaders. The common ground for improving the situation of children is much larger than the areas where differences exist.”

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