Allah then made an exception, saying: (Except those) among the ten men who fled to Mecca (who seek refuge with a people) i.e. the people of Hilal Ibn 'Uwaymir al-Aslami (between whom and you there is a covenant) a pact and peace, (or (those who)) the people of Hilal (come unto you because their hearts forbid them to make war) they come to you because they are annoyed at the huge cost they have to pay due to this pact (on you or make war on their own folk) due to their ties of kinship. (Had Allah willed He could have given them power over you) i.e. the people of Hilal Ibn 'Uwaymir (so that assuredly they would have fought you) together with their people upon the conquest of Mecca. (So, if they hold aloof from you and wage not war against you) upon the conquest of Mecca (and offer you peace) they submit to you through peace and honouring the pact they made, (Allah alloweth you no way against them) He does not give you any excuse for killing them.