Religious Enlightenment Needed to Prevent Vahhabism: Kuwaiti Deputy Minister

Society Materials 27 December 2007 16:55 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, / corr Trend R.Hafizoglu / The religious enlightenment of people is very important in preventing the Bahhabism and the spread of moderate Islamic ideas. "The most ideal method to prevent Vahhabism and any radicalism, is through the religious enlightenment of people", Adil al-Falah, the Kuwaiti Vagf Minister, said in a telephone interview with Trend.

Following the independence of Azerbaijan in 1991 and the opening of borders, Vahhabism which is considered to be a radical and the non-traditional direction, began spreading in the country. According to statistic data, 65% of population in Azerbaijan is Shiites. Though Vahhabism is one of the directions of the Sunnites, it differs for the intolerance towards traditional Shiitism and Sunnism.

Al-Falah said that irrespective of the religious believes and convictions, it is necessary to fight against all groups which represent radicalism. According to Al-Falah, who is attentively observing the political, economic and religious developments in Azerbaijan, the people in Azerbaijan are less informed about Vahhabism and the other branches of Islam and sects, considered as non-traditional. The religious enlightenment held on the state level is an obvious method for fighting against the branches of Islam, considered as non-traditional.

"Vahhabism is not supported by the Arab countries, but by the separate people and groups," the Deputy Vagf Minister of Kuwait stated. There are forces in the Arab countries, which oppose Vahhabism and fight against them. He mentioned the activities of the international center for Medium Line in Islam (Vasatiya), established in Kuwait and widely spread worldwide. The Center serves for the development of dialogue between the branches of Islam and the other religions. Adil al-Falah sees the major problems of untraditional branches are, in their aspiration of demonstrating the intolerance towards the other religions and the branches of Islam, and the spread of postulates strange for the society.

Radicalism and intolerance, negatively impacting the international image of Islam are not allowed in Azerbaijan, which is the bridge between the civilizations and cultures, the well-known worldwide as a symbol of tolerance, the Deputy Minister said. He said that the defense of stability in Azerbaijan is a citizen's duty of any Azerbaijani, irrespective of his religion and the religious convictions.

Al-Falah said that the relations between Kuwait and Azerbaijan are developing, and the opening of the diplomatic missions in both the countries testifies it. However, he regretted the obscurity about the Azerbaijani products in the Kuwaiti markets and the absence of the development of tourism between the two fraternal countries. "I will do my best for opening the Kuwait-Jeddah-Baulk flight," he added. Despite the obstacles by the Saudi airlines, all the means for commissioning this flight in 2008 will be undertaken.

In 2004, the Azerbaijani embassy was opened in Kuwait. The Kuwaiti embassy in Azerbaijan set up its activities in October 2007. Kuwait and Armenian have not established the diplomatic relations yet.