Muslim Man who saved dozens of Christians from ISIS says he’s no Hero

A Filipino Muslim who shielded over 60 Christians from ISIS after the terrorist organisation took siege of Marawi has said he’s not worthy of anyone’s praise although media outlets in the Asian country have unanimously crowned him a “Muslim Hero.”

Image: Norodin Alonto Lucman

The courageous and kindhearted man named Norodin Alonto Lucman reportedly saved a total of 64 Christians. He found inspiration in his Islamic Jurisprudence studies.

Lucman told reporters after his heroic exploits were made public that Islam preaches a sacrosanct life for everyone, stressing that the only true God sees all humans as one despite our differences in language, color or religion.

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“No one’s life is more valuable than someone else’s,” the Muslim Hero said to Al Arabiya in English. “Islam means love for one another.”

The Muslim Hero studied in Mecca, Saudi Arabia at the the time al-Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden was also a student.

Lucman found his calling after Marawi was taken by ISIS following an oath of allegiance pledged by Muslim extremists in the country.

Most of the child soldiers who formed a large majority of the militants were reportedly killing Christians or anyone who could not recite a word of Islam’s holy Quran.

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The good Samaritan said he thought the fight would last only a few days but was disappointed after Philippines military delayed in crushing the jihadists.

According to Lucman, some Muslim employees and a total of 44 Christians sought shelter and protection in his house. The number later increased to around 74 individuals with very little food to survive.

“We had only a week’s worth of supplies to sustain everyone, so we had to ration the food but things got worse when the fight entered its twelfth day,” he added. They also had no water to drink.

Lucman said he soon realized it was a matter of life and death.

At this point, the Muslim leader decided to move out of the city with his “flock”, risking their lives to save it.

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First, he took it upon himself to slowly teach the Christian group, made up of both men and women after Christian families in the surrounding neighborhoods joined him, a few recitals in Arabic such as the Islamic phrase “Allahu Akbar,” or “God is Great” in English.

The able-bodied men carried their children while the women dressed up with heads covered in hijab.

Lucman said there were snipers on roof-tops watching the city, highlighting the presenc of those heartless sharp shooters proved an obstacle.

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The long walk to freedom later became risky when they approached a bridge which demarcated Marawi and a nearby city. They needed to cross over in order to be completely safe but that was where an ISIS militant stopped them.

Fortunately for the fleeing Muslims and Christians, Lucman’s popularity as a former politician and clan head in south Philippines made him easily identifiable.

The jihadist let them walk unhurt.

In his words, “I was not playing the hero. It just so happened that I was at my house in Marawi city when the fighting first broke out.

“I knew there were some Christians working on nearby houses as carpenters and construction workers and I told my people to bring them to my house to avoid the cross-fire,” Lucman explained.

About 400,000 persons have been displaced since fight broke out in Marawi on 23 May, 2017.

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According to Philippines’ Armed Force Spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla, at least 562 extremists, 45 civilians and 128 state troops have died in the war.

Lucman studied in Umm al-Qura University in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. He was born in the southern island of Mindanao.

“…I studied in Mecca. I studied in Cairo. We were taught that Muslims and Christians were brothers in religion. The Quran even says that we have to protect people from other religions as part of humanity,” he said.

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