COVID-19 and Islamic Law Roundup

  • The pandemic has served as a catalyst for Gulf countries in their bid to adopt Western norms and policies, as declining oil prices, due to the pandemic, has underlined the need for attracting more foreign talent and investment.
  • News of the Covid-19 vaccine prompted Indonesian politicians to call for a halal vaccine, given that back in 2018, the country’s Islamic Council had issued a fatwa against a measles vaccine because it contained pork gelatin (although the Council had also added that in the absence of alternatives, that vaccine would also be permissible).
  • Malaysia continues to discuss efforts on producing a vaccine that would be permissible under Islamic law, as one scholar noted that the vaccine would be permissible even if it contained substances otherwise forbidden in Islam, reasoning that the Islamic maxim of “emergencies male the forbidden permissible” applied.

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