: The cabinet is of the view that Pahang Mufti Datuk Seri Dr Abdul Rahman Osman's statement on 'kafir harbi'
(non-believers opposed to Islam) was just an opinion, and not a fatwa.
According to a statement from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) issued today, the mufti's statement actually meant that the kafir harbi group should be resisted and not be fought against.
"His statement was also not a fatwa (edict). This is because an official fatwa must first go through the fatwa committee for determination.
"This issue has become a controversy due to the attempt by certain quarters to twist the statement by using the term 'fight'," said the PMO.
Abdul Rahman was reported to have said that DAP which was clearly against the implementation of Islamic law and intended to set up a secular country, belonged to the kafir harbi group and must be opposed by Muslims.
The PMO said that in the context of Islam, the term kafir harbi referred to non-Muslims based on the conditions stipulated in the religion and who were prepared to fight the rulers.
"In this context, non-Muslim Malaysians cannot be categorised as kafir harbi as they are citizens of this country, are protected by the country's laws and are not at war with the government.
"Therefore, the government stresses that any party giving views on the term kafir harbi must exercise due care so as not to create uneasiness among members of society, especially the non-Muslims," it said.
It also noted that it had been proven that since the country's independence, Malaysian society who comprised people of different races and political ideology were able to live in peace, based on the principles of democracy while their rights as Malaysian citizens were protected by the Federal Constitution.
"Historically, non-Muslims were able to live in harmony during the time of the Prophet," the PMO also said in the statement.
The government hoped that this statement would allay the uneasiness among the public, especially non-Muslims, more so in safeguarding harmony and national security, in line with the principles of maqasid syariah (objectives of Islamic law), it added.