In the Media

01/15/15: CNN: Imam Elahi speaking with Carol Costello on CNN's Newsroom show

01-15-15: Imam Elahi speaking with Carol Costello on the morning CNN Newsroom show.
IHW is receiving encouraging comments from all over the country for the inspiring and energizing words of imam Elahi with CNN this morning.
Imam Elahi mentioned how Islam and Muslims are a target of both physical and psychological terrorism. Also that our world is in need of leaders like Martin Luther King, that is why the interfaith of our community are coming to the Islamic House of Wisdom this Sunday to honor his non-violence movement.
He added that people like Ayatollah Sistani and former Iraninan President, Khatami are the Martin Luther King examples of our time. Reminding that President Rouhani brought an anti-violence and anti-terrorism push to the UN.
Imam Elahi stated that if the US and other Western governments are serious about fighting against ISIS and other terrorists, why are they so close with Saudi Arabia, the source of terrorism yet not even talking with Syria that has been fighting terrorism for 4 years and only in 2014 has lost more than 70000 of it citizens in this war.
There was a lot to share but how much can u say in 4 minutes? Please send us your thoughts!

01/09/15: Channel 7- Detroit: Local Imam addresses terror attacks in Paris, condemns them as senseless

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DEARBORN HEIGHTS (WXYZ) - A local Islamic leader is speaking out about this week's terror attacks in Paris.

Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi of the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights said such acts of violence hurt the image and message of Islam.

"They are not jihadists, they're a bunch of jerks," the Imam said of the two brothers, Cherif and Said Kouachi, who carried out the deadly attack on the office of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical newspaper in Paris.

"We feel sad because then our faith is under fire our faith is under attack," Imam Elahi said after his sermon. "These guys have nothing to do with Islam. That was a stupid act by stupid individuals who were brainwashed," he added.

Unfortunately, Imam Elahi said, the misunderstanding of Islam - or "Islamaphobia" - is a reality many face even in Dearborn, home to the biggest population of Arab Muslims in North America. He said it will take informed dialogue to break the barriers of that misunderstanding and that the responsibility not only rests with Muslims but also the greater community.

The Islamic House of Wisdom is located at 22575 Ann Arbor Trail in Dearborn Heights.


01/09/15: Channel 2- Detroit: Metro Detroit Islamic leaders condemn Paris killings

01/09/15: Channel 2- Detroit: Metro Detroit Islamic leaders condemn Paris killings

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Local Islamic leaders are speaking out and condemning the killings in Paris

They are also honoring the victims and showing solidarity with the people of France.

The Friday sermon at the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights by Imam Mohammed Elahi was emotional. 

01/09/15: Macomb Daily, Michigan- Local Muslims condemn terrorist attacks in France

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Leaders of the southeast Michigan Muslim community condemned the attacks in Paris this week that claimed the lives of 12 persons at the offices of a satirical magazine.

After tense standoffs Friday that involved hostages in two locations, French authorities cornered and killed two brothers they believe were responsible for the slayings at the Charlie Hebdo magazine. A third person who held a hostage in a separate location also was killed.

Prior to that outcome, representatives of the Imams Council of the Michigan Muslim Community Council denounced the attacks.

“Neither God, nor Muhammad, whom they thought they are defending, nor the overwhelming majority of Muslims, would sanction such a heinous crime,” Imam Mohammed Elahi and Imam Mustapha Elturk said in a joint statement.

“The perpetrators must be brought to justice and face the consequences of their crime against humanity.”

The imams are the religious leaders in the Muslim community in southeast Michigan, including those who reside in Macomb and Oakland counties. Southeast Michigan is home to tens of thousands of Muslims.

Charlie Hebdo magazine, its journalists and cartoonists routinely satirize politics and religion, including the Islamic faith.

The magazine’s depiction, in particular, of the prophet Muhammad as a “terrorist,” angers members of the faith who find the depictions offensive, the imams acknowledged.

But responding with violence is not justified nor sanctioned by Islam, they said.

Quoting the teachings of the Qur’an, the Muslim holy book, Imams Elahi and Elturk said: “Good and evil cannot be equal. Repel evil with what is better, and your enemy will become as close as an old and valued friend.”

The religious leaders also implored non-Muslims to resist the temptation to blame all Muslims for the violent acts perpetrated in France.

“We ask all people of conscience not to paint the entire Muslim people with the same brush,” the imams said. “We ask all citizens to refrain from violence and promote peace.

“Neither war nor revenge work for peace. Dialogue is the only way to peace.”

Among its goals is to promote unity and cooperation among the diverse Muslim communities; promote the best Islamic and American values; pursue social justice, improve human relations and uphold human rights in America.

08/26/14: ISIS is a bunch of gangsters, says imam at Dearborn rally (SLIDESHOW, VIDEO)

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By Aysha Jamali
Press & Guide Newspapers
Twitter: @AyshaJamaliNews

Imam Mohammad Elahi, of the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights, says ISIS does not represent Islam. Photo by Aysha Jamali (See more photos via the link in the article.)

Muslim imams from across metro Detroit gathered on the steps of Dearborn City Hall Aug. 25 in a united voice to speak out against ISIS, the Islamic State militant group wreaking havoc in Iraq and Syria.

The Islamic House of Wisdom, a Dearborn Heights mosque, organized the unity prayer and candlelight vigil where imams from the Imams Council of the Michigan Muslim Community Council spoke.

Imam Mohammad Elahi, of the Islamic House of Wisdom, said ISIS does not represent Islam and called the group “a bunch of gangsters.”

Click here to SEE PHOTOS from the rally.

Dawud Walid, executive director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the imams have always condemned terrorists, whether they be al-Qaeda, ISIS, or Boko Haram.

“We’re here primarily to defend the true message of Islam,” he said.

Imam Aly Lela, of Troy, said ISIS is killing in the name of religion but they are not that religion. They are evil, he said.

“This is not the Islam that we know. This is not the Islam that we practice,” he said.

The imams were also supported by those in the crowd who agree with their message.

“We just believe in supporting the Muslims against the terrorists,” said Judy Satterthwaite, 75, of Rochester.

She heard about the rally and came out with three friends, all in their 70s and 80s, from Rochester Hills.

Speakers also talked about American journalist James Foley, who was abducted by ISIS in Syria and is shown in a recently released video being beheaded by the group. All observed a moment of silence and lit candles in his memory.

“I am a journalist. He is a journalist,” said Osama Siblani, publisher of the Arab American News in Dearborn. “I stand with him and the rest of his family.”

Imam Mustapha Elturk, of the Islamic Organization of North America in Warren, sent his condolences to Foley’s family and other victims’ families.

“The barbaric behavior of ISIS is abhorred and cannot be justified,” he said.

Contact Staff Writer Aysha Jamali at

08/25/14: Metro Detroit Muslim leaders denounce ISIS as 'crazy criminals'

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Muslim leaders gathered Monday on the steps of Dearborn City Hall to strongly condemn ISIS, saying the militant group in Iraq and Syria doesn’t represent Islam or Muslims.

ISIS members are “crazy criminals who are abusing our religion,” said Imam Mohammed Elahi of the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights. “You’re a bunch of gangsters ... you’re not Islamic.”

Organized by imams with the Michigan Muslim Community Council, the speakers included both Shia and Sunni leaders of different ethnicities and races, all united in saying ISIS doesn’t speak for them.

“The beheading of James Foley ... is a clear violation of the holy Quran and the teachings of Prophet Mohammed,” said Imam Mustapha Elturk, who cochairs along with Elahi the Imams Council of the Michigan Muslim Community Council. “ISIS neither represents Islam nor Muslims.”

Monday’s event was the third anti-ISIS rally in Dearborn this summer that was organized by local Muslims. Two rallies organized by Shia leaders were held in Dearborn in June that condemned ISIS. Hundreds attended both rallies.

About 50 attended Monday’s rally, which included remarks by local imams, Osama Siblani, publisher of Arab American News in Dearborn, Dawud Walid, director of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, and Steve Spreitzer, president and CEO of the Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion.

“They are the enemies of humanity,” Siblani said of ISIS.

Siblani and Elahi asked the U.S. to stop supporting Syrian opposition groups such as ISIS. The U.S. has said it supports moderates in Syria’s opposition, not extremist groups like ISIS. Elahi also criticized Israel’s actions in Gaza.

“ISIS is a terrorist group,” said Imam Ali Ali, religious leader of the Muslim Community of Western Suburbs, a Canton mosque. “They don’t speak in the name of Islam, in the name of Muslims, in the name of humanity.”

One cleric in Dearborn, Ahmad Jebril, has become the most popular religious leader online for ISIS fighters from the West, according to a British think-tank. But leaders at Monday’s rally were squarely united against ISIS.

“They have an evil agenda not witnessed since Nazi Germany,” Ahmad Nasser of Livonia said of ISIS. “They are repulsive.”

Imam Aly Lela of Troy said of ISIS: “This is not the Islam we practice.”

Contact Niraj Warikoo: 313-223-4792 or Follow him on Twitter

08/06/14: Condemning Bloodshed in Gaza, Praying for Peace & Justice

Seen on this week's Channel 4 News, Detroit, Michigan-Condemning Bloodshed in Gaza, Praying for Peace & Justice 

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The InterFaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit is asking the community to fast on Tuesday to solidarity for peace in the Middle East.

Inspired by the parents of the slain Israeli and Palestinian youths coming together, the council said it's calling on all faiths to recognize the day, which is a Muslim fast day during Ramadan and the Jewish fast day known as 17 Tammuz.

"Conflicts over power often hijack religious identity in order to masquerade as having a religious purpose. This does a disservice to the sacred. In metropolitan Detroit we are determined to model for the world as best we possibly can how to work on local issue as friends with a common desire to build a thriving community in which we can all share as equals. As the world continues to watch religious extremism and violence shatter lives and communities in the Middle East, local religious and interfaith leaders are working together to create solidarity and understanding here at home," the council said in a statement.

To read the full statement, click here.

Imams on Flashpoint

Imam Steve Elturk and Imam Elahi, Sunni and Shia co-Chairs of the MMCC Imams' Council appeared on Local 4’s Flashpoint on June 26 to talk about Ramadan.

Watch the video here:Flashpoint 6/29/14