A controversial imam in Australia has asked Muslims not to get the vaccine for the coronavirus disease being developed by Oxford University. Sufyaan Khalifa claimed the vaccine being developed by AstraZeneca is ‘haram’ - meaning forbidden.
Khalifa has posted a video on his YouTube channel in which he blasted the methodology adopted by AstraZeneca, which said it is making the vaccine using foetal cells of an aborted baby in the 1970s and developed in a laboratory.
A senior Catholic Archbishop had recently warned he is “deeply troubled” by the deal, saying the potential vaccine uses a fetal cell line that creates an “ethical quandary” for Christians.
Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher wrote a letter to Prime Minister Scott Morrison outlining concerns of some Christians over the vaccine’s apparent use of a cell line derived from an elective abortion performed decades ago. The letter was signed by Anglican and Greek Orthodox religious leaders.
It also urged Morrison to pursue other “ethical” vaccine candidates to ensure religious objectors have a choice.
Australia earlier this month announced a deal with AstraZeneca to manufacture the “promising” vaccine if it is proven safe and effective, with plans to offer it for free to the entire population.
Australia, (Hindustan Times), 30 August 2020