Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah has urged Islamic scholars to teach young people “true” Islamic principles and avoid extremism and fanaticism.The king’s remarks were read out by Prince Khaled Al Faisal at an international Islamic conference in Saudi this week.The king said that scholars should resolve problems facing the international Muslim community, such as the widespread association of Islam to terrorism, the Saudi Gazette reported. “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia keeps a tab on the developments in the Muslim World, and pays special attention to the problems confronting the people,” the king said.“Undoubtedly, terrorism was a product of ignorance of the Islamic principles which advocate moderation, flexibility and tolerance,” King Abdullah said.The king added that deviations from Islamic principles have produced terrorism, which the kingdom has “firmly confronted” to maintain the country’s security. Saudi Arabia, which previously highlighted its success in thwarting attacks by Al Qaeda, has recently announced a crackdown on terrorism with a new law planned to allow extended detention for threats against internal security without charge or trial. The draft law plans to impose a minimum 10-year jail sentence on anyone questioning the integrity of the king or crown prince.But the planned law was criticized by Amnesty International, saying that the law will be used to stifle dissent and prevent pro-democracy protests.Meanwhile, the kingdom believes that internal terrorist crimes would endanger national unity and harm the reputation of the state or its position, Saudi Arabia's ambassador to Britain Nawaf bin Abdulaziz said in a statement carried on the official SPA news agency.
By Eman El-Shenawi