119.Memorandum from Islamic Concern (MIB
1. I would like on behalf of the 1.6 million
British Muslims, including 30,000 Muslim doctors and health professionals,
to present to you our clear united view against any intentional
ending of the life of any patient, whatever means or way, direct
or indirect, active or passive, by commission or omission; but
especially by depriving patients of their basic human rights to
food, fluid and life-saving treatment.
2. We British Muslims would like in particular
to submit to you our strong opposition to the government's draft
Mental Incapacity Bill.
3. All Muslims in Britain, Europe and all
over the world believe that life is sacred and that only God,
the Creator of all, is the Owner and Author of life. Only God
Almighty will decide about the end of the life of each one of
us. No doctor, judge, court, MP, Lord or relative can give any
legitimate ruling to end the life of any patient or any innocent
human being by any means or way.
4. All patients and the disabled, the old
and the chronically sick are equal in the eyes of God and their
life is sacred. For Muslim patients the best death is to die naturally
without taking any step to end one's life. A patient who ends
his/her life "has played God", "challenged God".
5. This is why all types of euthanasia (whether
direct or indirect, active or passive), suicide and assisted suicide
are prohibited by all the Holy Scriptures.
6. For example, God (Allah) said in the
final holy book Al Qur'an:
In the name of God, the Most Compassionate, the
"God/Allah takes the souls at
the time of their death, and those that died during their sleep
. . ." (chapter 39, verse 42).
"And (God) is the one who gave
you life, then shall he ordain you to die, then shall he give
you life again, truly mankind is ungrateful . . ." (chapter
22, verse 66).
"Do not kill yourselves, for
verily Allah has been to you most merciful." (chapter 4,verse
". . . take not life which God/
Allah has made sacred" (chapter 6, verse 151).
7. It is also inhumane to take any step
of action or omission intentionally to end the life of any patient.
The provision of food and fluid is a basic human right and need
for the sick and the healthy, for men and animals alike. No one
has the right to stop it or withdraw it from any creature (with
the intention of causing or hastening death) but we should provide
it to all until the moment of natural death, as fixed by God Almighty.
Otherwise one is killing the patient directly (euthanasia) and
causing his/her death by starvation and dehydration.
8. Food and fluid are not to be considered
medical treatment. It is ridiculous that healthy people who are
having daily food and fluid could be considered to be having medical
9. Likewise, to omit a life-saving treatment
is unethical, inhumane and against good medical practice.
10. It is in the best interests of patients
to be given all possible means to protect their lives; care, love
and counselling; family and social support; treatment for any
sub-clinical depression; the best analgesic care; and to be allowed
to die naturally, as God wanted according to his time, and not
as the doctor, relative or court may have wanted.
11. The making of an advance decision with
a suicidal intent should be illegal. Such a "living will"
would be more accurately described as a "death will".
Even if the law would allow for suicidal advance decisions, they
should be rejected and certainly not regarded as legally binding.
12. Any court or "lasting power of
attorney" should protect the life of every patient (mentally
incapacitated or not) and prohibit any means or procedure which
will end the life of any patient (direct or indirect, by commission
or omission), especially food, fluid, or any life-saving treatment.
13. Many mentally incapacitated patients
do not give their consent to withdraw or withhold food and fluid
14. Patients with or without mentally incapacity
have equal rights and equal obligations. Any mentally incapacitated
patient should have the same protection for his/her life like
any other patient, so that no exploitation of the vulnerable can