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Apple refuses to withdraw Fatwa app alleged to feature antisemitic rhetoric

The app reportedly includes comments from hate preacher Yusuf Al-Qaradawi

    Yusuf Al-Qaradawi has been banned from countries including the UK, US and France
    Yusuf Al-Qaradawi has been banned from countries including the UK, US and France (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

    Apple has declined to remove an app from its store with reported links to the Muslim Brotherhood organisation, saying it had not found the product in “violation of our guidelines.”

    The Euro Fatwa app, which was introduced on both the Apple and Google stores in May, was created by the European Council for Fatwa and Research, an organisation founded by Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the unofficial chief intellectual within the Muslim Brotherhood organisation.

    The introduction to the app reportedly includes comments from Mr al-Qaradawi, who has been banned from Britain since 2008, saying that “Muslims became a disgrace to Islam and have acted similarly to the Jews who decreed it was correct to steal.”

    In 2005, the Wall Street Journal reported that a member of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, which is based in Dublin, had cited the notorious antisemitic forgery, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, as evidence of a Jewish plot to undermine Muslim moral values.

    Mr Al-Qaradawi, who is also banned from other countries including the US and France, has also described the Holocaust in the following terms: “Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption ... The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them [the Jews] – even though they exaggerated this issue – he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them ... Allah Willing, the next time will be at the hand of the believers.”

    He has also described Jews as “treacherous aggressors”, calling upon Allah to “count their numbers and kill them, down to the very last one.”

    According to the Times, Google removed Euro Fatwa from its store within hours of being asked about app by the Sunday Times last month.

    However, Apple declined to remove the app, where according to the National, an Abu-Dhabi based news outlet, it has been among the top 100 downloads in a third of European countries since its launch.

    The app gives users advice about Islamic law based on fatwas, religious rulings. Among its statements, the Times reported, was the idea that although terrorism was forbidden, that “does not cover in its remit permitted forms of legal resistance against foreign occupation by all available means, including armed resistance”, which the paper suggested was referencing the Israel-Palestine conflict.

    The National claimed that the app suggests that European laws do not have to be adhered to if they contradict Islamic law, and quoted a German security agency as saying that that the app was “a building block in the process of radicalisation”.

    A Home Office spokesperson told the National that “no social media platform should allow themselves to be used to spread extremist propaganda.”

    The European Council for Fatwa and Research have been contacted for comment.

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