Qaradawi says Bahrain’s revolution sectarian

Unlike other Arab revolutions inclusive of all people


The Bahrain’s uprising unlike the other revolutions by the other Arab countries is a sectarian one, and does not represent the demands of Bahrainis as one nation, the influential Muslim scholars Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi said.

Al-Qaradawi, who is the president of the World Federation of Muslim Scholars, was vocal in amassing Egyptians against the ousted Egypt President Husni Mubarak, and egged on other revolutions that took place or are taking place elsewhere in the Arab World, but kept quiet for Bahrain.

“There is no people’s revolution in Bahrain but a sectarian one,” al-Qaradawi said, “what is happening is not like what has happened in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, but it is the empowerment of some factions via foreign forces on others; thereby it does not include the demands of all of the Bahraini people.”

According to al-Qaradawi, the imposition of one’s faction’s will power for its sole interest has snowballed events in the Gulf country. He said that when Sunni Bahrainis saw the protests by the Shiites, around 450 thousands went on the streets to demonstrate for their own set of demands.

“The other Arab revolutions, with a common denominator of the oppressed against the oppressor, the Bahraini one is a sectarian, with Shiites against Sunnis,” he said, adding “in Egypt the revolution was inclusive of all Egyptians with all of their different backgrounds, Muslims, Christians, old, young, secular, religious, and the same can be said for Tunisians, Yemenis, and Libyans.”

Meanwhile, Qaradawi said that he is not against Shiites, but he is against zealots, and against divisiveness and the empowering of one faction against another.

He also described the protests by the Shiites as not so ‘peaceful’. He said that “the Shiites attacked Sunnis, and took over their mosques, and used weapons just like the hooligans we saw in Yemen and Egypt.”

“For this reason I did not address the Bahraini revolution, because I could not find myself free, and I don’t have the enough information on what is happening.”

He also urged ‘rationales’ from all sides to open a dialogue and set their differences, and he praised the Bahraini King’s Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifa initiative for dialogue with the opposition as “good”.

The prominent Islamic scholar warned of ‘danger’ when he described some Shiite Bahrainis carrying pictures of the Supreme Leader of Iran since 1989 Ayatollah Khamenei and Lebanon’s Hizbollah’s leader Hassan Nasrallah.

“They carried Khamenei’s and Nasralah’s pictures as if they belong to Iran and not Bahrain, after all Bahrain belongs to the GCC, and we need them to show real citizenry.”

Qaradawi expressed his affection to the Bahraini ruling family in his sermon, and described his relation with the late Sheikh Isa ibn Salman al-Khalifa as close.

(Translated from Arabic by Dina al-Shibeeb)