Dr. Zohurul Hoque & Husain Nuri
90:13 The freeing of a captive,
90:13 The word raqaba literally means a neck, a slave, a captive. Slaves during the time of Muhammad as well as during biblical times were mostly well cared for and considered as members of the family. Therefore it is not surprising to see the Qur'ân publicly accepted the custom of slavery, however did not recommend it as the norm towards which the society should move. Instead, it strongly recommended and encouraged emancipation of slaves whenever possible (5:89; 9:60; 24:33; 58:3). The modern form of slavery as cruel servitude of humanity was invention of medieval Europe and European immigrants in other places. Since God described freeing of slaves as a good deed, and the Prophet taught and demonstrated freeing of slaves as meritorious, it can be conclusively proved that slavery in any form stands abolished in Islam. Thus, there cannot be any clash between Islam and Western human rights doctrines (see Article 8 of the UN declaration of Human Rights and Article 4 of the International Pact of Civil and Political Rights).
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