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DOHA: Noted Doha-based Islamic scholar Dr Yousuf Al Qaradawi has said that he was not speaking in favour of the mass protests in Bahrain because they were sectarian in nature.
“Many people ask why I am not talking about Bahrain. The Bahraini revolts are different from other popular revolts taking place in the Arab world against the tyrannical regimes. The protests in Bahrain are sectarian in nature. The Shias are revolting against the Sunnis,” said Qaradawi while delivering the Friday sermon at Omar bin Khatab mosque.
“I am not against Shias, I am against sectarianism that divide people on the basis of religion and sects,” said Qaradawi, adding that many people think he was anti-Shia.
He said the Shias protesting at the Pearl Roundabout in Manama assaulted several Sunnis and occupied their mosques.
“I was not interested to talk about this issue because of such incidents. I wish the Shias and Sunnis would get together and talk to each other to resolve the issues. Negotiation is better than dividing the community,” said Al Qaradawi.
He, however, said bringing troops from outside to suppress the protests was more harmful.
“It is better to bring the citizens under one umbrella to achieve common goals,” he said while calling on the Bahrainis to get rid of their differences.
Bahraini Shias were associating themselves to another country and were carrying pictures of Iranian leader Khamenie and Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, as if they belong to Iran and not to Bahrain.
“I want them to be real citizens of their country. I call for justice for all and remove the roots of oppression,” said the scholar.
He stressed the importance to establish a social fabric that enables all the people in the country to enjoy their rights.