- Title: Iraq's Kung fu imam says martial art goes hand-in-hand with Islam
- Date: 6th October 2019
- Summary: SULAIMANIYA, IRAQ (SEPTEMBER 19, 2019) (REUTERS) ***WARNING: CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** IMAM AND KUNG FU TRAINER, HALLO MOHAMMED RASHEED, PERFORMING KUNG FU VARIOUS OF RASHEED LEADING PRAYER RASHEED TRAINING ON PUNCHING BAG YOUNG MEN DURING KUNG FU TRAINING VARIOUS OF RASHEED AND TRAINEES DURING TRAINING SESSION (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) IMAM AND KUNG FU TRAINER, HALLO MOHAMMED RASHEED, SAYING: "Religion does not conflict with any sport. Religion encourages practising sports generally. Even god says in the Quran: 'prepare against them whatever you are able of power'. Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, says: 'A strong believer is closer to God than a weak believer'." RASHEED TRAINING YOUNG BOYS RASHEED COUNTING AS TRAINEES PUSH UP TRAINING IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) IMAM AND KUNG FU TRAINER, HALLO MOHAMMED RASHEED, SAYING: "What did the prophet have during battle? He was training in a camp and his companions used to train with him, so that they get ready for battle. We train so that we have a healthy body and a healthy mind. Whoever practises this sport feels comfortable physically and mentally. Religion encourages the comfort of the body and the mind." VARIOUS OF RASHEED LEADING TRAINING SESSION (SOUNDBITE) (Kurdish) KUNG FU TRAINEE, DILSHAD KAMAL, SAYING: "I have started Kung Fu training with Shiekh Hallo since 2000. I mastered the art of fighting and took part in several championships since 2006. I won many awards. I achieved all of this thanks to God's will and Shiekh Hallo. This is different because of our trainer is himself the imam of a mosque. He teaches us how to practise sport according to the teachings of Prophet Muhammad." VARIOUS OF RASHEED STRETCHING VARIOUS OF TRAINING SESSION IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) IMAM AND KUNG FU TRAINER, HALLO MOHAMMED RASHEED, SAYING: "This sport requires full commitment to the training and its exact timing. Religion encourages us to be committed. Prophet Muhammad says: 'Allah loves for those who do a job to do it with perfection'. This perfection comes only with full commitment with timings and training." TRAINING IN PROGRESS
- Embargoed: 20th October 2019 13:18
- Keywords: Sulaimaniya imam Sports Religion Kung Fu Iraq
- Location: SULAIMANIYA, IRAQ
- City: SULAIMANIYA, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001AZYL5CL
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: An Iraqi imam and Kung Fu trainer in the northern Iraqi city of Sulaimaniya says religion and sport are part and parcel of a healthy lifestyle.
Since 2000, 39-year-old Hallo Mohammed Rasheed has been leading prayers in a mosque in Sulaimaniya and later rushes to train young men the techniques of the combat sport.
For Rasheed, his two jobs are not contradictory. Religion and sport, he says, are equally needed for the physical and mental well-being of people.
He opened a centre in 2006 to receive young men who wish to strengthen their bodies. He has trained nearly 100 people since then.
Among those is 32-year-old Dilshad Kamal who says he won several awards thanks to the training offered by Rasheed.
Rasheed charges every trainee 10,000 Iraqi dinars ($8) monthly, an amount he says is enough to cover the cost of the sports hall's rent.
(Production: Saman Mahmood, Maher Nazeh, Mohammed Katfan)
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