(WASHINGTON, DC, 8/20/2014) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned what it called the "gruesome and barbaric" killing of American journalist James Foley by the terrorist group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), also known as the Islamic State.
ISIS released a video of the killing Tuesday. That same video showed a second man identified as American journalist Steven Sotloff and warned that he would be the next hostage killed.
In a statement, CAIR said:
"We strongly condemn this gruesome and barbaric killing as a violation of Islamic beliefs and of universally-accepted international norms mandating the protection of prisoners and journalists during conflicts.
"The Geneva Conventions, the Quran - Islam's revealed text - and the traditions (hadith) of the Prophet Muhammad all require that prisoners not be harmed in any way. There can be no excuse or justification for such criminal and bloodthirsty actions.
"We also call on those holding Steven Sotloff and other prisoners to immediately release them unharmed so they may return to their loved ones."
[NOTE: CAIR recommended that the video of Foley's killing not be distributed or viewed.]
CAIR noted that in chapter 76 of the Quran, God says: "(The truly virtuous are) they ... who give food -- however great be their own want of it -- to the needy, the orphan and the captive."
One hadith quotes the Prophet Muhammad strongly condemning a military commander who, without the prophet's knowledge, had harmed prisoners.
Another hadith has the prophet offering his own shirt to a man who gave his shirt to a prisoner of war who was captured without one.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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