Following are excerpts from an interview with Egyptian cleric Muhammad Hussein Yaaqub, which aired on Al-Nas TV on March 16, 2012 :
Hussein Yaaqub : My brothers, how are we to deal with bullying? First thing by means of religion, by restoring religion to people’s lives. To the lives of people and to the life of the Islamic nation… The shari’a must be exalted.
The Islamic punishment of hiraba must be implemented. The Koran says: “Those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive to spread corruption in the land…” If someone robs people of their money, it is as if he fought our Lord and His Messenger. Hiraba applies to a highway robber. A robber who stops someone in the street and says: “Give me your purse” is fighting Allah and His Messenger. If he stops someone in the street and says: “Give me your car,” he is fighting Allah and His Messenger.
The punishment for all this is called hiraba, and it is applied to someone who fights Allah and His Messenger. Anybody who attacks a home, a shop, a bank, a factory, or anything… When an armed gang enters a place in order to take things by force, they are fighting Allah and His Messenger.
The [hiraba] punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and who strive to spread corruption in the land, is for them to be executed, or to be crucified, or to have their hand and foot chopped off on opposite sides, or to be banished from the land. The implementation of this punishment will guarantee security.