Confiscating property of political opponents!

Recent developments and continuous operations have revealed that the current political administration wants to confiscate the goods and property of its political opponents in an attempt to ensure their decline in strength.

The punishment of opponents through the confiscation of their property is not a recent invention. This has always been the case in history and it remains so today. Some writers who have been told to inform the public about previously planned operations are laying the groundwork for the confiscation of the property of the Hizmet movement because it was included in the so-called Red Book, and call for the seizure of its media outlets (Zaman daily and Samanyolu TV). They further recommend the confiscation of the Dogan Group’s media outlets as well. In a country where the relationship between individuals and communities, and individuals and the state is not legally designed and protected and where the Constitution is not observed, confiscating the property of political opponents is punishment through confiscation. Relying on confiscation in the 21st century takes us back to the 1215 Magna Carta, in terms of Western democratic rights theory. This document for the first time restricted the powers of the king and recognized the supremacy of the law. The restriction of the powers of the king for the protection of religious clerics and the people was important. The text guaranteed two basic rights: the right to private property and the imposition of a fair tax. Article 39 reads: “No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgment of his equals or by the law of the land.” Confiscation is also a step backward to the pre-Islamic era, in terms of the legal protections Islam introduced. Confiscating the property of an individual or group was a custom in the pre-Islamic era, but a careful review of Islamic rules and provisions reveals that the Quran establishes legal protections for religion, life, property and future generations. Legal reasoning and personal opinions on this matter further confirm this. Property and assets acquired through labor, inheritance, donation, ransom, zakat, etc. are the property of an individual. The state cannot impose any material or financial request other than taxes. If we take Islam as a lifestyle and basis of social and economic policies, how tax monies should be spent is clearly identified. For instance, tax monies cannot be spent to build large palaces or buy expensive cars. State authorities are simple public servants they just receive the determined amount of salaries the figures they need to take as models include the Prophet Muhammad and Caliph Omar. They cannot make arbitrary rules to punish their opponents. The identification of opponents as members of a gang or terror group by the political administration and confiscation of their property not only violates the cardinal principles of Islam but also endangers the exercise and enjoyment of basic rights guaranteed under the Quran. Eventually, such an attitude introduces an arbitrary rule that will oppress the opposition.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman