عُمَان والقرصنة البحرية: دراسة في التراث الفقهي الإباضي
(Maritime Piracy in Oman: A Study in the Ibadhi Jurisprudential Heritage)
This study aims at highlighting the Omani role in confronting maritime piracy, and the reflection of this historical reality in the heritage of the Omani Ibadi Fiqh books, more particularly the Kitāb Bayān al-Sharc of Muḥammad b. Ibrāhīm al-Kindī (d. 508 AH/1115 CE) and the Kitāb al-Muṣannaf of Abū Bakr Aḥmad b. Mūsā al-Kindī (d 557 AH/1162 CE). The study relies on the inductive methodology in following historical and jurisprudential information on maritime piracy in these fiqh encyclopedias, as well as the analytical methodology in analysing their standpoint vis-à-vis maritime piracy. Among the most important results the study arrived at; Fiqh books generally and those of the Ibadi school particularly do not mention the term piracy (qarṣana), but rather treat the related cases under the term ‘highway robbery’ (ḥirāba). They do not distinguish between acts of highway robbery, their legal verdict and punishment on land or sea, be they in territorial waters or the high seas. The way of dealing with these cases speak of the description of a reality at hand that needed the Islamic legal rule for implementation, rather than conjectural reasoning. The study reveals, through the discussion of various case studies, the role of the Omanis and their fleet in fighting maritime piracy and securing seaways.
Key words: Maritime Piracy, Omani encyclopedias, Ibadhi Fiqh, Omani Heritage.