Wednesday, August 31, 2011
A Muslim group in San Diego is organizing a blood drive, as part of a national effort to mark the 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.
A Muslim group in San Diego is organizing a blood drive to mark the 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.
The goal is to show non-Muslims that Islam stands for peace and the only blood this Muslim group wants to shed is to save lives.
The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community USA will kick off the blood drive nationally in Washington, DC on Thursday. The San Diego chapter plans to hold a similar drive. The idea is to collect 10,000 bags of blood from Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
The San Diego Blood Bank provides about 12,000 bags of blood to hospitals each month.
Tahir Ijaz is spearheading the local drive. He said the September 11th attacks hijacked Islam itself and put American Muslims on the defensive about their religion. He hopes the drive will reverse that damage.
"So as a way of honoring the victims of 9/11 and also to give our message out there that we're a religion of peace and not terrorism, we wanted to give blood to basically save lives, Ijaz said.
Ijas is a member of the Ahmadiyya sect of Islam, which began in India. It espouses a less orthodox interpretation of jihad and Sharia Law.