The Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) has carried a statement by Youssef Qaradawi indicating that the organization has commissioned him to do a study on Islamic doctrine as it applies to the Muslim Minorities of Europe. According to the statement:
The General Secretariat of the European Assembly requested that I undergo a study on Nation and Citizenship, and the perspective of Shari’ah on the issue, in the framework of Islamic doctrine and purposes. The aim was to use the study as an introduction to an intellectual jurisprudential forum, to be held by the General Secretariat on the subject of citizenship and integration, with regards to the Muslim minorities of Europe and other continents. This is taking into consideration the confusion that has arisen around this sensitive issue, and the many enquiries posed, and the many answers given which differ according to understanding of significance and directions of diligence.
A report on FIOE by the NEFA Foundation describes the organization as follows:
The Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) claims to be an independent organization representing the interests of Muslims in Europe. In reality, the FIOE is an umbrella group that comprises the global Muslim Brotherhood in Europe. Strong links connect FIOE’s leadership central institutions and member organizations to the Brotherhood, as well as to Saudi Arabia. Funding for the FIOE is derived largely from Gulf sources, including some of the ruling families of the United Arab Emirates. The FIOE has strong ties to Hamas and Hamas fund-raising organizations, and some FIOE member organizations show evidence of links with Al-Qaida. The FIOE recently opened a headquarters office in Brussels and has had some success in positioning itself as a “dialog partner” for the EU and other important institutions.
Youssef Qaradawi, who heads the FIOE Fatwa Council, is often referred to here as the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood, an acknowledgement of his role as the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to lead the Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide stating only that
..he had consciously decided not to limit his scope of manoeuvre by tying himself ‘any movement which might constrain my actions, even if this is the Muslim Brotherhood under whose umbrella I grew and which I so defended…Would I, at the age of 77, accept what I turned down when I was 49?’
Based in Qatar, Sheikh Qaradawi has reportedly amassed substantial wealth through his role as Shari’ah adviser to many important Islamic banks and funds. He is also considered to be the “spiritual guide” for Hamas and his fatwas in support of suicide bombings against Israeli citizens were instrumental in the development of the phenomenon.