A COOPEARATION AND NON-AGGRESSION PACT WITH THE JEWS
Soon after emigrating to Madinah and making sure that the pillars of the new Islamic community were well established on strong bases of administrative, political and ideological unity, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) commenced to establish regular and clearly-defined relations with non-Muslims. All of these efforts were exerted solely to provide peace, security, and prosperity to all mankind at large, and to bring about a spirit of rapport and harmony within his region, in particular.
Geographically, the closest people to Madinah were the Jews. Whilst harbouring evil intentions, and nursing bitter grudge, they showed not the least resistance nor the slightest animosity. The Prophet decided to ratify a treaty with them with clauses that provided full freedom in faith and wealth. He had no intention whatsoever of following severe policies involving banishment, seizure of wealth and land or hostility.
The treaty came within the context of another one of a larger framework relating to inter-Muslim relationships.
The most important provisions of the treaty are the following:
Madinah and its suburbs, after the ratification of this treaty, turned into a coalition state, with Madinah proper as capital and Muhammad (Peace be upon him) as ‘president’; authorities lay mainly in the hand of the Muslims, and consequently it was a real capital of Islam. To expand the zone of peace and security the Prophet (Peace be upon him) started to enter into similar treaties with other tribes living around ‘his state’.
- The Jews of Bani ‘Awf are one community with the believers. The Jews will profess their religion, and the Muslims theirs.
- The Jews shall be responsible for their expenditure, and the Muslims for theirs.
- If attacked by a third party, each shall come to the assistance of the other.
- Each party shall hold counsel with the other. Mutual relation shall be founded on righteousness; sin is totally excluded.
- Neither shall commit sins to the prejudice of the other.
- The wronged party shall be aided.
- The Jews shall contribute to the cost of war so long as they are fighting alongside the believers.
- Madinah shall remain sacred and inviolable for all that join this treaty.
- Should any disagreement arise between the signatories to this treaty, then Allâh, the All-High and His Messenger shall settle the dispute.
- The signatories to this treaty shall boycott Quraish commercially; they shall also abstain from extending any support to them.
- Each shall contribute to defending Madinah, in case of a foreign attack, in its respective area.
- This treaty shall not hinder either party from seeking lawful revenge.