Tehran slams Riyadh for spreading Wahhabism

TEHRAN, Sep. 29 (MNA) – In an indication of the more tarnishing Tehran-Riyadh ties, the New York Times recently published an opinion piece by the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif declaring Wahhabism a “death cult” responsible for most of the Muslim world’s problems and blaming Saudi Arabia for spreading this “fanaticism.”

The New York Times piece titled ‘Let Us Rid the World of Wahhabism’ lambasted Riyadh for spreading Wahhabism across the region and called for an eradication of that beliefs.

In his message Zarif underscored “Saudi Arabia’s effort to persuade its Western patrons to back its shortsighted tactics is based on the false premise that plunging the Arab world into further chaos will somehow damage Iran."

Zarif also stressed that Saudi Arabia is playing up fears of an Iranian threat in order to justify its continued support to dangerous Islamist groups across the region.

In his message Iranian foreign minister also invited the Saudi rulers to put aside the rhetoric of blame and fear, and join hands with the rest of the community of nations to eliminate the scourge of terrorism.

Touching upon the crisis in Syria and Yemen, Zarif reiterated in his message that so far, the Saudis have succeeded in inducing their allies to go along with their folly, whether in Syria or Yemen, by playing the “Iran card.”

“The world cannot afford to sit by and witness Wahhabists targeting not only Christians, Jews and Shiites but also Sunnis. With a large section of the Middle East in turmoil, there is a grave danger that the few remaining pockets of stability will be undermined by this clash of Wahhabism and mainstream Sunni Islam,” Zarif wrote.

Tehran-Riyadh Dispute over Hajj

After Iran and Saudi Arabia failed to agree on security and logistics, for the first time in nearly three decades, Iranian pilgrims could not attend this year Hajj rituals in Saudi Arabia.

Just days before this year’s hajj, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei sent a message to the world Muslims on the occasion of Hajj blaming the Saudi rulers for saving the half-alive injured people in tightly closed containers instead of providing treatment to them.  

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince and Interior Minister Mohammed bin Nayef believes that Iran is attempting to "politicize" the hajj.

According to an Associated Press account, the September 2015 stampede and crush of pilgrims killed at least 2,426 people.

This is while, Saudi Arabia claims nearly 770 people were killed in the incident, but Iran, highest-suffering country, says over 5000 pilgrims, including 461 Iranians, lost their lives in the tragedy, though Saudi Arabia denies the figure.

Another blow to Wahhabism was a recent conference in Chechnya on Sunni Muslims which excluded Wahhabi figures from Saudi Arabia thus separating Sunni Islam from Wahhabism. Ayatollah Khamenei has also blamed Saudi Arabia for an earlier crane collapse in Mecca that killed 111 people, and said the kingdom's rulers had "reduced the hajj to a religious-tourist trip" while accusing Iran of "politicizing" the pilgrimage.

Iranian Supreme Leader said that Riyadh rulers, instead of offering an apology and expressing regret and prosecuting those directly behind this horrible incident, even refused to set up an international Islamic fact-finding mission in ultimate shamelessness and impudence.

Severance of Tehran-Riyadh Ties

The Hajj stampede has soured Iran and Saudi Arabia relations, the regional rivals that back opposite sides in the crisis in Syria and Yemen.

In January 2016, Tehran-Riyadh severed diplomatic relations after Riyadh announced the beheading of Shia prominent cleric Sheikh Baqir Nimr al-Nimr which drew instant censures from Sunni and Shia Muslims across the globe.

This feeling was also shared by Iranians, during which a large number of people amassed in front of the Saudi embassy in Tehran and Consulate in Mashhad and stormed the buildings.

Top Iranian officials also criticized the incident that was followed by Saudi Arabia's severance of ties with Iran.

In the end, it is worth mentioning that Zarif’s latest Op-Ed in New York Times has enlightened the world over Riyadh’s Rulers’ atrocities in the region.

As Zarif said during the past 30 years, Saudi Arabia has spent tens of billions of dollars exporting Wahhabism through thousands of mosques and madrasas across the globe.

Now the world is fully aware of Saudi Arabia’s endeavors to tarnish the image of real Islam with its dirty oil money. As a former Imam in Kosovo who became a journalist who writes about extremist influences, Visar Duriqi, said “The Saudis completely changed Islam here with their money.”

Another blow to Wahhabism was a very recent conference in Chechnya’s Grozny on Sunni Muslims and who can be categorized in the sect. The conference had invited several scholars and Ulama from Al-Azhar and all Sunni groups excluding Wahhabi figures from Saudi Arabia thus separating Sunni Islam from Wahhabism.

Now the world is fully aware of Saudi Arabia’s endeavors to tarnish the image of real Islam with its dirty oil money.Despite Saudi foreign minister effort in responding to Iranian FM Zarif’s article in New York Times by writing an article on Wall Street Journal of last weekend, public opinions across the world are getting more aware and vigilant toward Saudi war-mongering policies. While the respect for Islamic holy places in the Arab peninsula had made all Muslims across the world respect Saudi officials in the kingdom, in recent years, by turning their back to most strategic issues in world of Islam, including the Palestinian issue, and becoming a friend to Israel – which if not the only, at least the top common enemy of the whole Muslim world – public opinions are seeing double standards and conflicts in Saudi rulers’ behaviors.

In recent years, the only thing which has driven Saudi politics and foreign policy have been petrodollars which have been used for lobbying with western politicians, purchasing huge amounts of arms from western countries and shouting their mouths by filling their pockets, or bribing international organizations as was seen and condemned by the world in recent case of UN’s enlistment of Saudi Arabia as a child-killing regime in Yemen.

If Riyadh continues with its hypocritical manner and policy of portraying itself as a country and regime following Islamic teachings and acts in line with western countries and Israeli regime, more people across the world and the Muslim world will soon realize the double standard and the already tarnished image of the Arab country can get worsened even more.

News Code 120125


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    • Alireza 11:46 - 2016/10/01
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      As good as this article by Iranian FM was in NY times ,it would carry much better effect if multiple people in multiple occasion in various media make people of world aware of danger of Wahhabis and open their eyes to excess of these fenatics as well as courting al Azhar university scholers and other Muslems
    • Telh 14:53 - 2016/10/01
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      The answer to the Muslim world's problems is for Iran to go to war against Saudi Arabia. The last man standing will be the one who had the right interpretation. So go to it. The sooner the better
    • OziGooner 17:31 - 2016/10/01
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      Saudi Arabia is obsessed with spreading Wahhabism in Bosnia-Herzegovina in order to create a foothold in predominant Christian Europe. The West is playing with fire if it ignores these advances from Riyadh into the war-torn country which needs it's economic infrastructure to be reformed instead of mosques being erected everywhere possible.