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Fear not Accept Gitmo detainees on humanitarian grounds - Chief Imam

Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu said accepting to receive and protect the two Gitmo detainees was in line with the Islamic mission of compassion and humanitarianism.

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The National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu has urged the Muslim community and Ghanaians to accept the detainees on humanitarian grounds.

He made this known when the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Hanna Tetteh, in the company of General Joseph Henry Smith, Ghana’s Ambassador to the US, and Melinda Tabler-Stone, Chargé d’Affaires of the US Embassy in Accra, met with the Chief Imam along with other Muslim clerics at the residence of the Chief Imam to deliberate on matters arising from the arrival of the two Gitmo detainees currently in the country.

After a closed-door meeting, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu urged the Muslim community and Ghanaians to accept the detainees.

 

He said accepting to receive and protect the two Gitmo detainees was in line with the Islamic mission of compassion and humanitarianism.

Read more: Two Gitmo prisoners to resettle in Ghana

That plea had been rejected by Christian groups who indicated that compassion goes with common sense.

Sheikh Armiyawo Shaibu, spokesperson for the National Chief Imam, narrating the purpose of the visit to the media, stated that the minister came to share with them certain vital information about the true state of the detainees in Ghana.

He said, "The Islamic religion held the ultimate value that the human being is reformable; meaning that we hate the crime associated to man but then we don’t hate man."

See related: Accepting ex-Gitmo detainees 'wrong and dangerous' - Catholic Bishops

"The Chief Imam’s position is that Ghana is known for these excellent attributes of hospitality, compassion, respect for human rights and those accolades are things that single out Ghana in the comity of nations. By receiving and protecting them, we give more credence to these attributes," Sheikh Shaibu noted.

"We thought that we should offer that opportunity to the minister to also come and tell us aspects of the issue that could allay our fears, give us the security arrangement that has been put in place and also for us to see if there was anything for us to contribute," he said.

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