American Muslim Group Condemns 'Mutilations,' Not Murders

By Susan Jones | July 7, 2008 | 8:21 PM EDT

( - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which describes itself as a Muslim civil rights group, issued a press release on Wednesday, condemning "the mutilation of those killed in Iraq on Wednesday."

However, the press release did not condemn the murders of the four American civilian contractors, who -- as CAIR put it -- "were ambushed in their SUV's, burned, mutilated, dragged through the streets and then hung from a bridge spanning the Euphrates River, according to news reports."

CAIR said the mutilations of the bodies "violated both Islamic and international norms of conduct during times of war and [CAIR] called on all parties to the conflict to respect the sanctity of the dead and the sensitivities of their families."

The Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group cited a tradition of the Prophet Muhammad that prohibits mutilating bodies (Hadith 654.3).

In another tradition, CAIR added, "the Prophet...said, "Do not kill women or children, or an aged, infirm person. Do not cut down fruit-bearing trees. Do not destroy an inhabited place." (Al-Muwatta, Vol. 21, Hadith 9)

That was the only reference to murder in the press release.

CAIR, which describes itself as America's largest Islamic civil liberties group, is based in Washington, D.C. It has been criticized by some Americans for its ties to Muslim extremists.

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