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El Fadl said that although there exist different schools of interpretations of the law, his interpretation is that if a group of people contemplates a rebellion, governments cannot prosecute them if no action was taken. In cases of active rebellion, he said, the government should only resort to force if all other means fail. He said that Islamic law also says that when the rebels are arrested, they should not be punished for long periods and their property cannot be confiscated. El Fadl explained that the rebellion law is often neglected because both Muslims and non-Muslims approach the issue in general terms instead of specific terms. "We have to understand the unfortunate fact that seemed to have dominated the approach to Islam," El Fadl said. "They limited themselves to the general approach and never bothered with the specifics and details." -- Tricia Kwan

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