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Mufti Menk

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Ismail ibn Musa Menk was born in June 27, 1975 Harare, Zimbabwe where he undertook his initial studies. His parents are of Gujarati Indian extraction. More specifically Bharuch. Like others from the region, he is likely a 4th or 5th generation Southern African (prior to partition and the creation of Pakistan). He undertook his initial studies with his father, Moulana Musa, memorizing the Quran and learning Arabic. He went to St. John’s College (Harare) for senior school. He later specialized in Hanbali fiqh at the Islamic University of Madinah. Menk has been identified as a Deobandi as well as a Salafi by different sources, though he has not publicly acknowledged his involvement in either movement.

He obtained a degree in Shariah Law from the Islamic University of Madinah. Following this, he went on to specialize in Islamic jurisprudence in Gujarat, India.

Mufti Menk is a Muslim cleric and Grand Mufti of Zimbabwe. He is also the director of the Daarul Ilm (Islamic Educational Centre) of the Majlisul Ulama.

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The Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe is an Islamic welfare organization which caters to the needs of the Muslim population of Zimbabwe, especially in Islamic education

Mufti Menk’s personal and down-to-earth personality in his lectures made him to be one of the most sought-after Islamic scholars in recent times. His lecture series, a Mufti Menk trademark, are widely watched on YouTube and other social media platforms and have quickly gained attention and popularity across the globe.

He travels the world often to deliver his messages and one of his profound yet simple note to his followers is, “Do good, help others while preparing for the Hereafter”

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Menk has been named one of The 500 Most Influential Muslims in the world by the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought in Jordan in 2013, 2014 and 2017.

Menk opposes terrorism and has pledged his aid in curbing religious extremism in the Maldives. On 31 March 2018, he urged Liberian Muslims to avoid Muslim—Christian violence, arguing that Muslims and Christians are brothers and sisters from one father, the prophet Adam.

He blames western media for misleading the world that Muslims are generally terrorists. According to Gulf News, Menk said that everyone on this earth is a part of a family and has one maker,

 therefore, no one has the right to force any belief or faith on another.

In 2018 he published a collection of his sayings as a book titled Motivational Moments and in 2019 published the second edition.

Menk was honoured with an Honorary Doctorate of Social Guidance by Aldersgate College, Philippines and its collaborative partner Aldersgate College – Dublin, Ireland on 16 April 2016.

KSBEA 2015 Awards – Global Leadership Award in Social Guidance was awarded by the Cochin Herald.

The Huffington Post has described Menk as an “openly homophobic Islamic preacher” who has denounced the act of homosexuality as “filthy”. In 2013, he was due to visit six British universities – Oxford, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Cardiff and Glasgow – but the speaking tour was cancelled after student unions and university officials expressed concern about his views. Menk’s controversial statement included these words: “How can you engage in acts of immorality with the same sex?… The Qur’an clearly says it is wrong what you are doing… Allah speaks about how filthy this is… With all due respect to the animals, homosexuals are worse than animals.”

On 31 October 2017, Singapore banned Menk from its borders because it believes he expresses views incompatible with its multicultural laws and policies. According to the Straits Times, he has asserted that “it is blasphemous for Muslims to greet believers of other faiths during festivals such as Christmas or Deepavali”.

Singapore’s Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement that its decision to reject Menk’s application for a short-term work pass stemmed from his “segregationist and divisive teachings”. 

The Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe, Menk’s own institution, released a statement to express “regret and dismay” regarding the ban. It said that Menk was an “asset to multicultural, multireligious Zimbabwe” and that viewers should “listen to his sermons in full” and not “edited clips of a few minutes” to see the moderate path he has chosen.

In November 2018, the Danish government banned Menk from entering its borders for 2 years.

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