The Amman Message

A Universal & Unanimous religious & political consensus (ijma’) of the Ummah (nation) of who is a Muslim

The Amman Message started as a detailed statement released the eve of the 27th of Ramadan 1425 AH / 9th November 2004 CE by H.M. King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein in Amman, Jordan. It sought to declare what Islam is and what it is not, and what actions represent it and what actions do not. Its goal was to clarify to the modern world the true nature of Islam and the nature of true Islam.

In order to give this statement more religious authority, H.M. King Abdullah II then sent the following three questions to 24 of the most senior religious scholars from all around the world representing all the branches and schools of Islam:

(1) Who is a Muslim?

(2) Is it permissible to declare someone an apostate (takfir)?

(3) Who has the right to undertake issuing fatwas (legal rulings)?

Based on the fatwas provided by these great scholars (who included the Shaykh Al-Azhar; Ayatollah Sistani and Sheikh Qaradawi), in July 2005 CE, H.M. King Abdullah II convened an international Islamic conference of 200 of the world’s leading Islamic scholars ‘Ulama from 50 countries. In Amman, the scholars unanimously issued a ruling on three fundamental issues (which became known as the ‘Three Points of the Amman Message’), these are as follows:

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

May peace and blessings be upon the Prophet Muhammad and his pure and noble family

(1) Whosoever is an adherent to one of the four Sunni schools (Mathahib) of Islamic jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi`i and Hanbali), the two Shi’i schools of Islamic jurisprudence (Ja`fari and Zaydi), the Ibadi school of Islamic jurisprudence and the Thahiri school of Islamic jurisprudence, is a Muslim.

Declaring that person an apostate is impossible and impermissible. Verily his (or her) blood, honour, and property are inviolable. Moreover, in accordance with the Shaykh Al-Azhar’s fatwa, it is neither possible nor permissible to declare whosoever subscribes to the Ash’ari creed or whoever practices real Tasawwuf (Sufism) an apostate. Likewise, it is neither possible nor permissible to declare whosoever subscribes to true Salafi thought an apostate.

Equally, it is neither possible nor permissible to declare as apostates any group of Muslims who believes in God, Glorified and Exalted be He, and His Messenger (may peace and blessings be upon him) and the pillars of faith, and acknowledges the five pillars of Islam, and does not deny any necessarily self-evident tenet of religion.

(2) There exists more in common between the various schools of Islamic jurisprudence than there is difference between them. The adherents to the eight schools of Islamic jurisprudence are in agreement as regards the basic principles of Islam. All believe in Allah (God), Glorified and Exalted be He, the One and the Unique; that the Noble Qur’an is the Revealed Word of God; and that our master Muhammad, may blessings and peace be upon him, is a Prophet and Messenger unto all mankind.

All are in agreement about the five pillars of Islam: the two testaments of faith (shahadatayn); the ritual prayer (salat); almsgiving (zakat); fasting the month of Ramadan (sawm), and the Hajj to the sacred house of God (in Mecca).

All are also in agreement about the foundations of belief: belief in Allah (God), His angels, His scriptures, His messengers, and in the Day of Judgment, in Divine Providence in good and in evil. Disagreements between the ‘ulama (scholars) of the eight schools of Islamic jurisprudence are only with respect to the ancillary branches of religion (furu’) and not as regards the principles and fundamentals (usul) [of the religion of Islam]. Disagreement with respect to the ancillary branches of religion (furu’) is a mercy. Long ago it was said that variance in opinion among the ‘ulama (scholars) “is a good affair”.

(3) Acknowledgement of the schools of Islamic jurisprudence (Madhahib) within Islam means adhering to a fundamental methodology in the issuance of fatwas: no one may issue a fatwa without the requisite personal qualifications which each school of Islamic jurisprudence determines [for its own adherents]. No one may issue a fatwa without adhering to the methodology of the schools of Islamic jurisprudence. No one may claim to do unlimited Ijtihad and create a new school of Islamic jurisprudence or to issue unacceptable fatwas that take Muslims out of the principles and certainties of the Shari`ah and what has been established in respect of its schools of jurisprudence.

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These Three Points were then unanimously adopted by the Islamic World’s political and temporal leaderships at the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit at Mecca in December 2005. And over a period of one year from July 2005 to July 2006, the Three Points were also unanimously adopted by six other international Islamic scholarly assemblies, culminating with the International Islamic Fiqh Academy of Jeddah, in July 2006. In total, over 500 leading Muslim scholars worldwide as can be seen on this website [click here to see the entire list] unanimously endorsed the Amman Message and its Three Points.

This amounts to a historical, a universal and unanimous religious and political consensus (ijma’) of the Ummah (nation) of Islam in our day, and a consolidation of traditional, orthodox Islam. The significance of this is:

(1) that it is the first time in over a thousand years that the Ummah has formally and specifically come to such a pluralistic mutual inter-recognition; and

(2) that such a recognition is religiously legally binding on Muslims since the Prophet (may peace and blessings be upon him) said: My Ummah will not agree upon an error (Ibn Majah, Sunan, Kitab al-Fitan, Hadith no.4085).

This is good news not only for Muslims, for whom it provides a basis for unity and a solution to infighting, but also for non-Muslims. For the safeguarding of the legal methodologies of Islam (the Madhahib) necessarily means inherently preserving traditional Islam’s internal ‘checks and balances’. It thus assures balanced Islamic solutions for essential issues like human rights; women’s rights; freedom of religion; legitimate jihad; good citizenship of Muslims in non-Muslim countries, and just and democratic government. It also exposes the illegitimate opinions of radical fundamentalists and terrorists from the point of view of true Islam. As George Yeo, the Foreign Minister of Singapore, declared in the 60th Session of the U.N. General Assembly (about the Amman Message): “Without this clarification, the war against terrorism would be much harder to fight.”

Finally, whilst this by the Grace of God is a historical achievement, it will clearly remain only principial unless it is put into practice everywhere. For this reason, H.M. King Abdullah II is now seeking to implement it, God willing, through various pragmatic measures, including:

(1) inter-Islamic treaties;

(2) national and international legislation using the Three Points of the Amman Message to define Islam and forbid takfir;

(3) the use of publishing and the multi-media in all their aspects to spread the Amman Message;

(4) instituting the teaching of the Amman Message in school curricula & university courses worldwide; &

(5) making it part of the training of mosque Imams and making it included in their sermons.

God says in the Holy Qur’an says:

“There is no good in much of their secret conferences save (in) whosoever enjoineth charity and fairness and peace-making among the people and whoso doeth that, seeking the good pleasure of God, We shall bestow on him a vast reward.” (Al-Nisa, 4:114).

The following is a selection of some of the Organisations, Scholars and notable people who have endorsed the “Amman Message”:

     Forum of Muslim Ulama and Thinkers, Mecca (September 2005)

3rd Extraordinary Session, OIC, Mecca (December 2005

H.E. Mr. Hamid Karzai. President of the Islamic republic of afghanistan

H.M. King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. Kingdom of Bahrain

H.E. Begum Khaleda Zia. Prime Minister people’s republic of Bangladesh

Prof. Dr. Shaykh Mustafa Ceric. Head of the ‘Ulama’ and Grand Mufti of Bosnia and Herzegovina

H.M. Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei darussalam

H.E. Alhaji Dr. Yahya A.J.J. Jammeh, President republic of Gambia

H.E. Maulana Mahmood Madani, Member of Parliament; General Secretary, Jamiat Ulema-i-Hindi. Republic of India

Mr. Nooh al-Kaddo, Director, Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland

Shaykh Ibrahim Gabriels, Head of South African ‘Ulama’

    Egypt:

H.E. Mr. Mohamed Hosni Mubarak. President ARAB REPUBLIC OF EGYPT

H.E. Grand Imam Prof. Dr. Muhammad Sayyid Tantawi, Shaykh al-Azhar

Prof. Dr. Ali Jumu‘a. Grand Mufti of the Arab Republic of Egypt
Prof. Dr. Ahmad Muhammad Al-Tayyib, President of Al-Azhar University

France

Shaykh Prof. Dalil Abu Bakr, Chairman of the France Supreme Council of the Islamic Religion
and Dean of the Paris Mosque

Shaykh Khalid Adlen Bentounes, Alawiyah Sufi Order; Honorary President of the International
Association of the Friends of Islam,

    Republic of Indonesia

H.E. Dr. Alawi bin Shihab, Coordinating Minister for People’s Welfare and Special Envoy of the President
Dr Muhammad Maftuh Basyuni. Minister of Religious Affairs republic of indonesia

    Islamic republic of Iran

Supreme Spiritual Leader Grand Ayatollah Al-Sayyid Ali Khamenei

H.E. Dr. Mahmood Ahmedinejad, President
Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Muhammad Ali Al-Taskhiri, Secretary General, Forum for the Proximity of the Islamic Schools of Jurisprudence
Grand Ayatollah Al-Sayyid Fadil Lankarani
Grand Ayatollah Muhammad Waez-zadeh Al-Khorasani, Former Secretary General, Forum for the Proximity of the Islamic Schools of Jurisprudence

Republic of Iraq

H.E. Mr. Jalal Talabani, President
Grand Ayatollah Al-Sayyid Ali Sistani
Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Ishaq Al-Fayad
Grand Ayatollah Al-Sayyid Muhammad Sa‘id Al-Hakim
Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Bashir Al-Najafi
Grand Ayatollah Al-Sayyid Shaykh Hussein Isma‘il Al-Sadr
Dr. Ahmad Abd Al-Ghaffur Al-Samara‘i, Head of the Diwan of the Sunni Waqf
Al-Sayyid Muhammad Al-Musawi, Secretary General, World Islamic Ahl Al-Bayt League

    Hashemite kingdom of Jordan

H.M. King Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein
Prof. Dr. HRH Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad, Personal Envoy and Special Advisor to HM King Abdullah II
Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought

State of Kuwait

H.H. Shaykh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah, Prime Minister
Dr. Abdullah Matuq al-Matuq, Minister of Awqaf and Religious Affairs

Republic of Lebanon

H.E. Mr. Fouad Sinoura, Prime Minister
Prof. Dr. Hisham Nashabeh, Chairman of the Board of Higher Education, Dean of Education at Makassed
Al-Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Fadlallah
Shaykh Muhammad Rashid Qabbani, Grand Mufti, Republic of Lebanon (Mufti of the Sunni Muslims)
Prof. Muhammad Al-Sammak, Secretary-General of the National Council for Islamic-Christian Dialogue;
Secretary-General for the Islamic Spiritual Summit

Malaysia

H.E. Dato’ Seri Abdullah bin Haji Ahmad Badawi, Prime Minister
Dr. Anwar Ibrahim, Former Deputy Prime Minister
Dato’ Dr. Abdul Hamid Othman, Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister

Maldives

H.E. Mr. Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, President
Dr. Mahmud Al-Shawqi, Minister of Education
Shaykh Mohamed Rasheed Ibrahim, President of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs

Mauritania

H.E. Mr. Al Ould Mohamed Fal, President
H.E. Shaykh Abdallah Bin Bayyah fatwa, Former Vice President of Mauritania; Vice President of the International Union of Muslim Scholars

Kingdom of Morocco

H.M. King Mohammed VI
Prof. Dr. Abbas Al-Jarari. Advisor to HM the King

Sultanate of Oman

H.H. Al Syed Asaad bin Tareq Al Said, Special Envoy of the Sultan
Shaykh Ahmad bin Hamad Al-Khalili fatwa, Grand Mufti of the Sultanate of Oman

Republic of Pakistan

H.E. General Pervez Musharraf, President
H.E. Ambassador Muhammad Aslam, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to Kuwait Dr. Muhammad I‘jaz Al-Haqq, Minister of Religious Affairs, Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Shaykh Mufti Muhammad Taqi Uthmani fatwa, Deputy Chairman, Islamic Fiqh Council, Jeddah;
Vice President, Dar al-Ulum, Karachi

State of Palestine

H.E. Mr. Ahmed Qorei, Prime Minister
Shaykh Dr. Ikrimah Sabri, Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and All of Palestine;
Imam of the Blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, Shaykh Taysir Rajab Al-Tamimi, Chief Justice of Palestine

Russian Federation

Shaykh Rawi Ayn Al-Din, Mufti; Head of the Muslim Religious Administration
Prof. Dr. Said Hibatullah Kamilev. Director, Moscow Institute of Islamic Civilisation

Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

H.M. King Abdullah bin Abdel Aziz Al Saud. King of Saudi Arabia; Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques
Dr. Abd Al-Aziz bin Uthman Al-Touaijiri, Director General, The Islamic Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ISESCO)
H.E. Shaykh Abd Allah Sulayman bin Mani‘. Member, Council of Senior ‘Ulama’ of Saudi Arabia
Dr. Hassan bin Mohamed Safar, Professor, Islamic Studies Department, Faculty of Humanities
King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah

    Republic of Senegal

H.E. Mr. Abdoulaye Wade, President
Mr. Al-Hajj Mustafa Sisi, Special Advisor to the President of Senegal

    Republic of Sudan

H.E. General Omar Hassan Al Bashir, President
Abd Al-Rahman Sawar Al-Dhahab. Former President of the Republic of Sudan
Al-Imam Al-Sadiq Al-Mahdi. Former Prime Minister of Sudan, Head of ansar movement

    Syrian Arab Republic

H.E. Mr. Farouk Al-Sharaa’, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Shaykh Dr. Ahmad Badr Hasoun, Grand Mufti of the Syrian Arab Republic
Prof. Muhammad Sa‘id Ramadan Al-Buti. Head of the Religion Department, Law Faculty, University of Damascus
Prof. Dr. Shaykh Wahba Mustafa Al-Zuhayli. Head of Department of Islamic Jurisprudence and its Schools,
Islamic Law Faculty, Damascus University
Dr. Salah Al-Din Ahmad Kuftaro, Director General, Shaykh Ahmad Kuftaro Academy and Islamic Intellectual

    Republic of Tunisia

Mr. Mohamed Al-Ghanousi, Prime Minister
Prof. Dr. Al-Hadi Al-Bakkoush. Former Prime Minister of Tunisia
Dr. Abu Baker Al-Akhzuri, Minister of Religious Affairs

    Republic of Turkey

H.E. Mr. Bulent Arinc. President of the Grand Turkish Assembly
Prof. Dr. Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu. Secretary-General, Organisation of the Islamic Conference
H.E. Prof. Dr. Mehmet Aydin. Minister of State, Government of Turkey

    United Arab Emirates

H.H. Shaykh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President
H.H. Ambassador Nasir bin Abd Allah bin Hamdan

    United Kingdom

Dr. Abbas Mahajarani. Member of the Imam Al-Khoei Benevolent Foundation
Sir Iqbal Sacranie. Former Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain
Shaykh Yusuf Islam. Islamic Missionary
Dr. Manazir Ahsan. Director, The Islamic Foundation
Mr. Khurshid Ahmed, British Muslim Forum (BMF)
Mr. Iqbal Asaria. Finance Director, Muslim Council of Britain
Mr. Said Ferjani. Muslim Association of Britain
Mr. Dilwar Hussain. The Islamic Foundation
Mr. Wakkas Khan. President, FOSIS
Ms. Unaiza Malik. Muslim Council of Britain
Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad/Tim Winter. Lecturer, University of Cambridge

    United States of America

H.E. Prof. Dr. Seyyed Hossein Nasr. Author and Professor of Islamic Studies George Washington University
Shaykh Hamza Yusuf Hanson. President of the Zaytuna Institute
Shaykh Faisal Abdur Rauf. Imam of New York City Central Mosque
Shaykh Nuh Ha Mim Keller. Islamic Missionary and Intellectual; Fellow of the Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought
Sheikh Suhaib D. Webb. Islamic Missionary

    Republic of Yemen

H.E. General Ali Abdullah Saleh, President
Shaykh Muhammad bin Muhammad Isma‘il Al-Mansur
Shaykh Humud bin ‘Abbas al-Mu‘ayyad
Shaykh Habib ‘Umar bin Muhammad bin Salim bin Hafiz. Principal, Dar al-Mustafa, Tarim
Shaykh Al-Habib ‘Ali Al-Jifri. Islamic Missionary and Intellectual

Click here to visit the official “Amman Message” website