PA Religious Council Emphasizes Ban on Selling Land to Jews

May 25, 2022

3 min read

Apartheid in South Africa started already in 1913, when the South African government passed the Natives Land Act. According to this law, black South Africans were prohibited from buying or renting land in 93% of South Africa. This law was one of the foundation stones of the later adopted official policy.

When compared to the PA approach to selling land to Jews, the Natives Land Act, seems almost positive.

At a recent meeting of PA Supreme Fatwa Council, led by PA Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories and Supreme Fatwa Council Chairman Sheikh Muhammad Hussein, the PA reiterated that Palestinians selling land to Jews is not only a criminal offence but also forbidden according to Shari’ah law:

“Palestine is kharaj land (i.e., land belonging to Muslims) and a waqf (i.e., an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law; see note below) which, according to Shari’ah law, it is forbidden to sell its lands and its properties or facilitate its transfer to enemies. This is because in terms of Shari’ah law it is considered a public Islamic property and not private property…

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 25, 2022]

After reiterating the Fatwa (i.e., religious ruling), the Head of the Supreme Muslim Council and head preacher at the Al-Aqsa Mosque Ikrima Sabri, added what exactly would happen to those who broke the law:

“Sabri emphasized the Fatwa according to which one who sells or mediates [the sale of property to Jews] will not be buried, will not be purified, and will not be prayed for, and that whoever interacts with them is a traitor…

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 9, 2022]

As Palestinian Media Watch has already noted, according to PA law amended in 2014 by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, the punishment for selling land to Jews is life imprisonment with hard labor.

The following are longer excerpts of the items mentioned above: 

Headline: “The [Palestinian Supreme] Fatwa Council again emphasized the fatwa banning the sale of real estate and lands to the occupation”

“The Palestinian Supreme Fatwa Council again emphasized the fatwa (i.e., religious ruling) banning the sale of real estate and lands in Jerusalem and throughout Palestine to the Israeli occupation.
At a meeting that it held yesterday, Thursday [March 24, 2022], led by [PA] Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territories and Supreme Fatwa Council Chairman Sheikh Muhammad Hussein, the Fatwa Council said that Palestine is kharaj land (i.e., land belonging to Muslims) and a waqf (i.e., an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law; see note below) which, according to Shari’ah law, it is forbidden to sell its lands and its properties or facilitate its transfer to enemies. This is because in terms of Shari’ah law it is considered a public Islamic property and not private property…
The council also called on the occupation authorities to stop harming the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque and to respect its sanctity, and also called on our people and everyone who is able to reach the Al-Aqsa Mosque to come to it and carry out Ribat there (i.e., religious conflict over land claimed to be Islamic).”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 25, 2022]

“[Head of the Supreme Muslim Council and head] preacher at the Al-Aqsa Mosque Ikrima Sabri said that… the wave of those arriving at the Al-Aqsa Mosque is a clear message to those participating in the Negev Summit and carrying out normalization [with Israel] (refers to March 2022 Negev Summit attended by Egypt, Bahrain, Morocco, and the UAE as part of the Abraham Accords; see note below -Ed.) that the Al-Aqsa Mosque belongs only to the Muslims, and no one else.

Sabri emphasized the fatwa according to which one who sells or mediates [the sale of property to Jews] will not be buried, will not be purified, and will not be prayed for, and that whoever interacts with them is a traitor…

The Al-Aqsa Mosque preacher spoke about the dangers surrounding the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, as a number of rabbis carried out religious rituals in its plazas and one of them is calling to offer the Passover holiday sacrifice, and this arrogance will burn them.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 9, 2022]

Muhammad Hussein also serves as Deputy Secretary-General and acting Secretary-General of the PLO Popular National Conference of Jerusalem.

A waqf is an inalienable religious endowment in Islamic law. Palestinians define all of Israel as waqf, and thereby Israel exists on Islamic holy land. Palestinian leaders have explained that under Islamic law Muslims are commanded to free the waqf from non-Muslims.

Reprinted with author’s permission from Palestinian Media Watch

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