by Timothy Whiteman
Raymond Ibrahim, a Middle East and specialist on Islam, as well as a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum, has published in the Middle East Forum that:
“Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, declared that it is ‘necessary to destroy all the churches of the region.’”
Ibrahim has cited several Middle East sources that have reported the Grand Mufti has also “stressed that Kuwait was a part of the Arabian Peninsula, and therefore it is necessary to destroy all churches in it.”
That call has come on the heels of Kuwaiti Member of Parliament (MP) Osama Al-Munawer, who has announced that he:
“… plans to submit a draft law calling for the removal of all churches in the country.”
Al-Munawer later “clarified” that any Christian places of worship currently in-place could remain, but future construction should be banned.
Fellow MP, Mohammad Hayef supported the draft law.
As reported by the Kuwait Times, Hayef stated:
“Kuwait already has an excessive number of churches compared to the country’s Christian minority.”
In regards to the clout of the theological club the Mufti wields, Ibrahim noted:
“Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah is not just some random Muslim hating on churches.
He is the Grand Mufti of the nation that brought Islam to the world.
Moreover, he is the President of the Supreme Council of Ulema [Islamic scholars] and Chairman of the Standing Committee for Scientific Research and Issuing of Fatwas.
Accordingly, when it comes to what Islam teaches, his words are immensely authoritative.”
Are There Really Christians In Arabia?
There are two separate Catholic Diocese on the Arabian peninsula:
- The Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia (Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which number approximately 2 million Catholics).
- The Vicariate of Southern Arabia (The UAE, Oman and Yemen), which number approximately 1.3 million.
There are also a small number various Eastern Orthodox as well as multiple Protestant denominations present on the peninsula.