Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet) has issued a fatwa on donating zakats to the state’s campaign that was launched to collect money to be used in the country’s struggle against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“It’s religiously permissible for the zakats to be collected and distributed to those in need via the solidarity campaigns launched nationally in these days,” the Diyanet said on April 1.
Zakat is a religious obligation, ordering all Muslims who meet the necessary criteria to donate a certain portion of wealth each year to charitable causes.
According to the Diyanet, the fatwa was released after the directorate received a high number of questions on the issue.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan launched a “National Solidarity” campaign and promised seven months of his salary to the cause. Various state institutions, firms and politicians made contributions.
The Diyanet also said that zakat is one of Islam’s most important institutions for social solidarity and helping one another.
“What one needs to be careful about is that the person donating money should state that it’s zakat,” it added.