The International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) is continuing to express its unprecedented support for Hamas. On October 31, 2023, it issued a fatwa calling on the Palestinian resistance factions in the West Bank and Israel, the countries bordering Israel including Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon, and all other Arab and Muslim countries to intervene militarily to assist Hamas against Israel. "[J]ihad and sustenance of Palestine are a religious obligation," it says, particularly when "the four-million-strong official [Arab] militaries, on which $170 billion are spent annually [by these countries], remain confined to barracks, weapons rusting and equipment failing, as the ummah and the world are collapsing." This military intervention, it says, would "achieve an international balance and prevent oppression that would spark an [Arab and Islamic] uproar." It adds that Islamic law forbids remaining silent about the Israeli aggression and that doing so would be "a betrayal of Allah, His Messenger, and the believers, and one of the major sins in the sight of Allah Almighty."
The IUMS, established in 2004 by the extremist sheikh Yousuf Al-Qaradawi, is supported, sponsored, and funded by Qatar. For years, it has consistently promoted a discourse of incitement, calls for jihad, antisemitism, and anti-Christian sentiment.
IUMS members read the fatwa (Source: Iumsonline.org, October 31, 2023)
It should be noted that earlier, on October 7, 2023, the day of the Hamas attack, the IUMS released a statement signed by its president, Salim Segaf Al-Jufri, and its secretary-general, 'Ali Al-Qaradaghi, calling the attack an "effective" and "mandatory development of legitimate resistance," and stressing that Muslims have a religious duty to support their brothers and sisters "throughout all of Palestine, especially in Al-Aqsa, Jerusalem, and Gaza."
This most recent fatwa comes shortly after Hamas leader abroad Khaled Mash'al called on clerics and Islamic scholars to issue fatwas to pressure Arab rulers to take action against Israel in the context of the Israel-Hamas war. Clerics from across the spectrum – Salafi-jihadi and Shi'ite – have also issued fatwas calling for waging jihad to support Gaza.
The following is a translation of the fatwa:
"1. Governments and official militaries are bound by religious duty to intervene urgently to rescue Gaza from genocide and total annihilation, in full commitment to the duty of supporting Palestine religiously, politically, legally, and morally, and in accordance with international agreements and the strategic interests of the region and the ummah, and in keeping with their religious authority towards the peoples.
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"2. Military intervention and supply of military equipment and expertise are a binding religious obligation for the following:
First, the Palestinian domestic level, within Palestinian territory: [The fatwa] obligates the Palestinian Authority and all the resistance factions in the West Bank and inside Israel.
The Four Cordon States, starting with Egypt, then Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon.
All Arab and Islamic countries, in coordination with Palestinians inside Palestinian territory and the Four Cordon States, and within an urgent alliance capable of overcoming the state of indecision and weakness that has lasted for decades, and which led the occupier to tenaciously carry on its immeasurable crimes, which portends a general and comprehensive holocaust, and a comprehensive collapse of the region and its surroundings.
"3. Scholars, elites, and all authorities are religiously obligated to act urgently and in line with their duty, including pressuring governments and official militaries, as well as the political, legislative, parliamentary, and judicial institutions, to intervene urgently, and to fulfill their religious, historical, constitutional, and strategic responsibilities.
"4. The greatest danger facing the people is hopelessness due to failure to obtain rights and to repel injustices against them. This may herald a situation of general unrest, the extent and outcome of which only Allah knows – especially in light of the recent Zionist aggression that is backed by comprehensive, scandalous, and provocative Western support. [This Western support] includes betrayal of the resistance and the hundreds of millions who support it...
"5. The West's comprehensive military, financial, media, diplomatic, and strategic support [for Israel] makes it imperative for the Arab and Islamic countries to likewise act militarily, financially, diplomatically, strategically, and on the media level, in order to achieve an international balance and prevent oppression that would spark an [Arab and Islamic] uproar and could herald collapse and storm. It is inconceivable that the four-million-strong official militaries [of the Arab and Muslim countries], on which $170 billion are spent annually [by these countries], remain confined to barracks, weapons rusting and equipment failing, as the ummah and the world are collapsing.
"6. Jihad and sustenance of Palestine are a religious obligation and an Islamic and humanitarian responsibility. Islamic law forbids remaining silent about the aggression and not repelling it by mobilizing governments and official militaries – with the closest [to Israel] doing so first, and then [the others] in order of priority [i.e. proximity].
"Leaving Gaza, Al-Aqsa, Jerusalem, and Palestine to be annihilated and destroyed is a betrayal of Allah, His Messenger, and the believers – and one of the major sins in the sight of Allah Almighty."
The IUMS fatwa.
 Iumsonline.org, October 31, 2023.
 See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 10836, In Statement, Qatar-Based And Funded International Union Of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) Calls 'Al-Aqsa Storm' Operation An 'Effective' And 'Mandatory Development Of Legitimate Resistance,' States: Muslims Must Support Their Brothers In Al-Aqsa, Jerusalem And Gaza, October 8, 2023.
 Telegram, Hamasps/17291
 See MEMRI JTTM report Fatwa Signed By Dozens Of Clerics, Nine Islamic Groups, Calls For Jihad Against Israel, Expresses Support For Hamas, October 25, 2023.