News+and+politics religion philosophy the cynic librarian: Takfir and Sunni/Shia Alliances

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Takfir and Sunni/Shia Alliances

This Sunni Shiite thing, aka takfir, has been abrogated in recent statements by some major Muslim clerics. According to one source, the only Islamic school of thought that wants to maintain this practice is Saudi Wahhabism. ...

The signers of this document include:

In accordance with the fatwas issued by the honourable and respectable Grand Imam Sheikh Al Azhar.

The Grand Ayatollah Al Sayyid Ali Al Sistani, the honourable and respectable grand mufti of Egypt, the honourable and respectable Shiite clerics (both Jaafari and Zaydi), the honourable and respectable grand mufti of the Sultanate of Oman.

The Islamic Fiqh Academy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the grand council for Religious Affairs of Turkey.

The honourable and respectable grand mufti of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the respectable members of its National Fatwa Committee, and the honourable and respectable Sheikh Dr Yusuf Al Qaradawi;

And in accordance with what was mentioned in the speech of His Majesty King Abdullah during the opening session of our conference;
Note Sistani's name. He's the major religious authority in Shia Islam.

I wonder whether recent moves by Saudi Arabia to head off Iran and support hardline Sunnis in Iraq are not related to this statement in some way. IE the Saudis are scared that any consolidation of ties between Iran and Iraq will undermine their own interpretation of Islam.

These comments should also be juxtaposed with Cobban's reading of Moqtada al-Sadr's attempts to forge an alliance between Shiite, Sunni, and secular elements in Iraq.

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