[QODLink]
Middle East

Young Saudis urged to avoid Syria war

Kindgom's grand mufti says joining rebels "not obligatory" and tells preachers they should not encourage involvement.

Last Modified: 29 Oct 2013 10:12
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Thousands of Saudis are estimated to have travelled to Syria to fight with rebel forces [Al Jazeera]

Saudi Arabia's highest religious authority, the grand mufti Abdulaziz Al al-Sheikh, has told young Saudis they should not go to Syria to fight in the civil war.

Saudi Arabia has backed the rebels battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad sent weapons, and called on world powers to "enable" Syrians to protect themselves.

"This is all wrong, it's not obligatory," the grand mufti said in a lecture, according to a report on Monday in the Saudi newspaper Al-Hayat.

I do not advise one to go there ... you will be a burden to them, what they want from you is your prayer."

Abdulaziz Al al-Sheikh, the grand mufti of Saudi Arabia.

"These are feuding factions and one should not go there. I do not advise one to go there ... Going to a land that you do not know and without experience, you will be a burden to them, what they want from you is your prayer."

The grand mufti, appointed by the Saudi king, also warned preachers against encouraging young men to fight in Syria during their sermons, after delivering what the paper said was a lecture on "Deviation among the youth" at a mosque.

"Muslim should be fearful of God and not deceive young Muslims and exploit their weakness and lack of insight and push them to an abyss," the mufti was quoted by the newspaper.

"I advise them to advise as they would advise their sons."

Saudi Arabia is wary that fighters could return home and use their experiences against the kingdom's rulers.

Saudi-born Osama bin Laden, the creator of al-Qaeda, turned on the Saud family after fighting in Afghanistan against the Russians.

Sunni Muslim al-Qaeda fighters attacked targets inside Saudi Arabia between 2003 and 2006.

A Gulf Arab source familiar with military movements in the region said in September 2012 that thousands of Saudis travelled to Syria to join the rebels. It is not known how many succeeded.

339

Source:
Reuters
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Since she was 16-years-old, Scottish Nationalist Party's Sturgeon has strove for independence from the UK.
Armed group's ransom success with German hostages marks a re-emergence, as authorities investigate ISIL links.
Western nations are moving into the resource-rich country after decades of disinterest, challenging China's interests.