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Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)

Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)

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Published by Rizky M Faisal

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Published by: Rizky M Faisal on Aug 24, 2013
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25/08/13Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia » Blog Archive » Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)m.hizbut-tahrir.or.id/2013/06/08/aceh-nusantara-and-the-islamic-khilafah-part-one/1/6
Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)
June 8th, 2013 by kafi
Indonesia, formerly known as Nusantara (meaning Archipelago), is the largest Muslim country inthe Muslim world. Long before its independence, Indonesia was the homeland of many Islamickingdoms which were the centers of Islamic power in Nusantara, extending from the Sultanate of  Aceh in the west to the Sultanate of Ternate in the east.Historical records prove that these Islamic sultanates were not independent on their own, rather they had a very close relationship with the Khilafah Islamiyah in Turkey (Uthmani Khilafah). Thispaper will review briefly some historical evidence that describes the unity and relationshipbetween the Islamic sultanates in Nusantara with the Khilafah Islamiyah.
Recognition of the Islamic Khilafah
The effect of the presence of the Khilaf ah (also refer red to as
Daulah Islamiyah
or Islamic State)on the political life of the archipelago had been felt since the early days of its establishment. Themuslims were successful in the
(conquests or openings) of the Persian Empire and soonafter large parts of the Eastern Roman Empire, suchas Egypt, Syria, and Palestine. Under theleadership of Umar ibn al-Khattab, the Daulah Islamiyah had became the world superpower sincethe 7th century AD. When the Khilafah was under the r ule of the Umayyads (660-749 AD), therulers of the Indonesian archipelago were still the Hindus – who still embraced Hinduism eventhough they recognized the greatness of Khilafah.The recognition of the glory of Khilafah was proven by two letters sent by Maharaja of Srivijaya tothe Khilafah during the reign of the Umayyads. The first letter was sent to Muawiyyah, and thesecond letter was sent to Umar bin Abdul Aziz.
The first letter was found in a
(archive) of Bani Umayyads by Abdul Malik ibn Umayr and was delivered to Abu Ya’yub Ats-Tsaqofi, whichwas then delivered to Al-Haytsam ibn Adi. Al-Jahizh who heard about the letter from Al-Haytsam,who told about the introductory part of the letter as follows:
25/08/13Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia » Blog Archive » Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)m.hizbut-tahrir.or.id/2013/06/08/aceh-nusantara-and-the-islamic-khilafah-part-one/2/6
From the King of Al-Hind whose animal cages have one thousand elephants, (and) whose palace is made of gold and silver, who is served by the kings’ daughters, and who has two great rivers that irrigate the aloe trees, to Muawiyah ….” 
The second letter was documented by Abd Rabbih (H/860-940 246-329 AD) in his compositionknown as Al-Iqd Al-Farid. The fragment of the letter was as follows:
From the King of Kings …: who is the descendant of a thousand kings … to the King of Arabia(Umar ibn Abdul Aziz) who does not associate God with other gods. I had sent you a gift, whichwas actually not much, but it was just a sign of friendship, and I wanted you to send mesomeone who can teach me Islam, and explain to me its laws.
In addition, Farooqi found an archive of the Uthmani containing a petition from the Sultan Ala al-Din Riayat Shah to Sultan Sulayman Al-Qanuni which was brought by Huseyn Effendi. In this letter, Aceh recognized the Uthmani leadership as Khilafah Islam. In addition, the letter also contained anaccount of the Portuguese military activities which posed a big problem for the Muslim traders andthe pilgrims en route to Makkah. And that the assistance of the the Uthmani was urgently neededto save the Muslims who were being slaughtered by the infidel Farangi (Portuguese).
Sulayman Al-Qanuni H/1566 died in 974 AD. However, the petition of Aceh gained support fromSultan Selim II (974-982 H/1566-1574 AD), who issued the command to undertake a militaryexpedition to Aceh. Around September 975 H/1567 AD, Kurtoglu Hır Reis, the Turkish Admiral inSuez, sailed to Aceh together with a number of rifle experts, soldiers and artillery. The troops wereordered to be in Aceh as long as they were required by the Sultan.
However this large fleet onlypartially reached Aceh since they were diverted during the journey to quell the uprising in Yementhat ended in 979 H/1571 AD.
According to historical records, the Turkish army who arrived in Aceh in 1566-1577 AD were only around 500 soldiers, including firearms, rifles, and technicalexperts. With this assistance, Aceh was able to strike back against the Portuguese in Malacca in1568 AD.
The presence of Kurtoglu Hızır Reis with his fleet of army was greeted with great ceremony by theMuslims of Aceh. Kurtoglu Hızır Reis was later given the title as governor (
) of Aceh,
who wasthe official delegation of khalifah posted in the area. This suggests that the relationship betweenNusantara and the Uthmani Khilafah was not only brotherly relations but also political relations of the state. The presence of the guardianship of Turkey in Aceh shows that that Aceh was anintegral part of the Khilafah Islamiyah.On the other hand, there were many Malay political institutions in the Archipelago which receivedthe title of sultan from certain rulers in the Middle East. In 1048H/1638 AD, the Mayor of Banten, Abd al-Qodir (ruled from 1037 to 1063H/1626-1651 AD) was awarded the title of Sultan by Sharif 
25/08/13Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia » Blog Archive » Aceh, Nusantara and the Islamic Khilafah (Part One)m.hizbut-tahrir.or.id/2013/06/08/aceh-nusantara-and-the-islamic-khilafah-part-one/3/6
of Makkah as a result of a special mission he sent to the Holy Land. Meanwhile, the Sultanate of  Aceh was known to have close ties with Turkish authorities and Haramayn Ustmani. Likewise,Palembang and Makassar also had a special relationship with the ruler of Makkah.
At that time,the rulers of Makkah were an integral part of the Uthmani Khilafah based in Turkey.Judging from the use of the terms, the Islamic sultanates of the archipelago associatedthemselves as an inseparable part of the Khilafah. Some Javanese classical books mentionedthis matter. The Kings of Pasai (pp. 58, 61-62, 64), for example, called the official name of theSultanate of Samudra Pasai as “Samudra Dar al-Islam”. The term of Dar al-Islam was also used inthe books of law to refer the Sultanate of Pahang. Nur al-Din al-Raniri, in Bustan al-Salatin (eg, onpp. 31, 32, 47), called the Sultanate of Aceh as Dar al-Salam. The term was also used in Pattaniwhen the local authorities, Paya Tu Naqpa, converted to Islam and took the name Sultan IsmailShah Zill Allah fi-Alam who reigned in the land of Pattani Dar al-Salam (Tale of Patani, 1970:75).In classical Islamic political science, the world was divided into two, namely Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb. Dar al-Islam is an area that applied the Islamic law and the security is in the hands of theMuslims, while Dar al-Harb is the opposite of Dar al-Islam. The use of the term “Dar al-Islam” or “Dar al-Salam” indicates that the Malay rulers accepted geopolitical Islamic conception of thedivision of the two world regions. This geopolitical concept was further crystallized during theestablishment of European nations initiated by “the Peringgi” (Portuguese) then followed by other European nations. Later on, especially the Dutch and the English started to become rampant inthe Indian Ocean and the Straits of Malacca (Sulalat al-Salatin, 1979 :244-246). They undertookphysical colonization and spread Christianity through missions and missionaries.Uthmani Empire, as mentioned by Hurgronje (1994, pp. 1631)
, was pro-active in payingattention to the plight of Muslims in Indonesia by opening a representative government (consulate)in Batavia at the end of the 19th century. To the Muslims in Batavia, the Turkish consul promised tofight for the emancipation of the rights of Arabs to be equal to those of Europe. In addition, Turkeyurged that all Muslims in the Dutch East Indies Dutch be free from oppression. Above all, Aceh was much visited by scholars from different parts of the Islamic world. Sharif of Makkah sent an Islamic cleric, Sheikh Abdullah Kan’an, as teacher and preacher to Aceh. Inaround 1582, two great scholars of Arab countries, Sheikh Abdul Khayr and Shaykh MuhammadYamani arrived in Aceh. In addition, in Aceh itself there were a number of scholars, such as Al-Sumatrani Shamsuddin and Abdul Rauf al-Singkeli.
 Abdul Rauf al- Singkel received an offer from the Sultan of Aceh, Safiyat al-Din Shah, to fulfill thepost of a Qadi whose title was Qadi al-Malik al-Adil which had been vacant for some time sinceNur al-Din al-Raniri returned to Ranir (Gujarat). After due considerations, Abdul Rauf accepted theoffer.
Then, he officially became a Qadi with the title of Qadi al-Malik al-Adil. Furthermore, as aQadi, Sultan Abd Rauf was asked to write a book as a benchmark (qaanun) of the application of 

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