After some Greek Muslims were arrested on Friday for gathering at a place of worship, defying the government measure that bans gatherings of more than 10 people, President of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community of Greece, Imam Atta-Ul Naseer, reprimanded the Imams who invited the faithful to pray in places of worship.
Naseer stressed the importance of adhering to the measures the Greek government has taken to prevent the spread of Covid-19. He advised the Muslims in Greece to pray at home and avoid gatherings.
The president of Muslims in Greece also issued the following official statement:
“Due to the tragic results of Coronavirus around the globe, the Greek Government took some important initiatives by closing all the places of worship to avoid large gatherings which could play a role in spreading the virus along with many other precautionary measures.
“Today, at Friday prayers, some Muslims in Athens were arrested for violating these measures taken by the Government. It is possible that many are being misled by some Imams. This makes it more important for me to advise the Muslims who have been confused by some people. Firstly, let me assure the Muslims of Greece that Islam allows prayers to be offered at home in congregation in such circumstances. During the lifetime of Prophet Muhammad on an occasion when the weather conditions became difficult people were instructed to pray at their homes. This incident has been narrated by Sahih Bukhari, one of the most authentic collection of traditions of the Prophet.
“As Muslims living in Greece, it is our responsibility to abide by the laws of the land. We should support the authorities in every possible way to help contain this virus. All congregational prayers should be offered at home. Remember all the people in your prayers who are suffering. All the medical instructions should be followed. We should make sure to extend a helping hand to anyone in need of help while keeping in mind all the precautions. If there are any elderly or vulnerable people living in our neighborhood please let them know that they can count on you for help. Only leave home when it is absolutely necessary. Islam teaches to support the community and show kindness to everyone and in this difficult time we need to practice these teachings more than ever.”