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    Sep 13, 2016

    Yaacob: Islam here integrates with community

    MUSLIM religious leaders and worshippers have to stand up strongly against extremist views that could undermine the peace of the country, Minister-in-Charge of Muslim Affairs Yaacob Ibrahim said as Muslims in Singapore celebrated Hari Raya Haji yesterday.

    "Muslims in Singapore are a part of (the country), and anything that serves to undermine our integration is not welcome here," he added.

    He also emphasised the public's role in alerting the authorities to any extremist idea or information.

    He said: "At the end of the day, we need to build this as a community, as a nation and not individually."

    Occasions such as Hari Raya Haji can be a platform for non-Muslims to understand the religion better.

    Dr Yaacob noted that the "Islam that we practise in Singapore is the Islam that is integrating with a wider community".

    On a separate note, he said Singapore's request to the Saudi authorities to raise the haj quota this year has not been granted.

    The number of Singaporeans allowed to go on the pilgrimage to Mecca remains at 680.

    Dr Yaacob was speaking to reporters at En-Naeem Mosque in Hougang, where he attended morning prayers before observing the sacrificial ritual of korban.

    Despite the death of 121 Irish lambs on a flight to Singapore on Sunday, proceedings went on smoothly yesterday.

    A total of 1,867 Australian sheep and 1,583 Irish lambs were transported to the 26 mosques islandwide and two Malay/Muslim organisations - the Muhammadiyah Association and Jamiyah - for the ritual.

    A total of 180 sheep were sacrificed at the En-Naeem Mosque, with 3kg of meat and a bag of groceries distributed to each needy resident in the neighbourhood.

    In a sermon on the practice of Islam in Singapore at the mosque, the Mufti of Singapore, Mohamed Fatris Bakaram, told a 3,500-strong congregation that views which state that Muslims cannot live in harmony with non-Muslims cannot be applied in Singapore.

    "Such antagonistic opinions can fan the flames of hatred and discomfort in engaging with people of other religions, and will give the wrong impression about Islam and Muslims," he said.