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Muslims Say Airport Scanners Violate "Fatwa"

A "fatwa" or religious ruling was issued Tuesday by the the Fiqh Council of North America, The Fiqh Council is a group of Islamic scholars with members throughout the US and other parts of the world who determine Islamic jurisprudence. This council is targeting airport security scanners claiming that they violate the Islamic fundamental practice of "haya" or modesty. "Haya" is central to the Islamic belief that men or women should not seen naked by others. The Fiqh council finds electronic screening devices reveal far too much of a person's body.

Representatives from the Transportation Security Administration, spokesman Jim Fotenos, responded to the Fiqh Councils' concern with this statement: "TSA's mission is to keep the traveling public safe. Advanced imaging technologies are an important tool in a multi-layered security system to detect evolving threats such as improvised explosive devices. TSA's use of these technologies includes strong protections in place to safeguard passenger privacy. Screening images are automatically deleted, and the officer viewing the image will never see the passenger.”

The alternative to airport screenings is a more hands on approach via security guards. In order to respect Muslim/Islamic groups and their beliefs, rather than using screening device/s that compromise "haya," airport security guards can "pat down" Muslim travelers.

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