Turkey’s Islamic authority, The Diyanet (Turkish Directorate of Relgious Affairs), has released a statement condemning the use of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies after a user posed a question on social media about buying bitcoin. This decision leaves many in the Islamic world wondering whether Bitcoin really goes against their religion, or if it’s just incompatible with The Turkish government.
Turkey Condemns Cryptocurrency
The Diyanet’s translated statement is as follows:
“Buying and selling virtual currencies is not compatible with [Islam] at this time.
“In order for a currency to have a monetary value, it must either take its value in the state authority or have a unique value like gold. Virtual money, although used by some sectors as a means of exchange, can not be regarded as money because it does not have the prestige and credibility that the state provides, and because there is no central financial institution behind it and it is not under government guarantee. Moreover, it is not appropriate to buy or sell virtual moneys in the following stages, such as being open to speculation about losing or losing, being easily used for unauthorized work and transactions such as money laundering purposes, and being away from state supervision and oversight.”
We reached out to Lukas (Ashraff) Royal, prolific bitcoin trader and content creator, for comment on this declaration. He responded, “If there is a currency that is halal, it’s bitcoin.”
Expressing his confusion at the statement, Royal said:
“This makes no sense, Turkey is a secular state … I can understand the concern about drugs and money laundering but cash is easier to use for those than [bitcoin.] This whole thing is ridiculous.”
He goes on to characterize the announcement as a ploy by the state and explain that the person that drafted it “doesn’t know what they’re talking about.”
While Turkey does not regulate Bitcoin as money or place restrictions on its trade, this announcement could be a portent of future attempts to curtail its use within their borders.
Do you think Turkey’s declaration on Bitcoin will stick in the Islamic world? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
Images via Pixabay, Ensonhaber.com