TORONTO — More than 120 Islamic religious leaders from across Canada issued a declaration Thursday denouncing acts of terrorism as a perversion of their faith. “Anyone who claims to be a Muslim and participates in any way in the taking of innocent life is betraying the very spirit and letter of Islam,” said the statement, which was read by Imam Ahmad Kutty of the Islamic Institute of Toronto after midday prayers at a mosque. The declaration was organized by the Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations and signed by imams representing Muslim communities across the country. It was intended as a response to the first London bombings on July 7, but wound up being made public on another day of attacks in the British capital. “We categorically and unequivocally reject such acts. We will confront and challenge the extremist mindset that produces this perversion of our faith,” said Kutty, who read the declaration to the media and about 50 worshippers. “It is our religious duty as imams to confront this evil,” Kutty told reporters after his statement. “It is our duty to preach against all kinds of extremism.” (MORE)


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