Azerbaijan, Baku, November 17/ Trend , corr I. Alizade/ Caucasus Muslims Clerical Board opposes shutting down Abu Bakr mosque.
"No one is authorized to knock down the mosque and I oppose it whatever happens," Haji Allahshukur Pashazade, chairman of Caucasus Muslims Clerical Board told press conference on November 17.
The blast caused by the hand grenade thrown to Abu Bakr mosque by unknown man at 08:50p.m. on 17 August 2008, killed two and injured 19. The activities of the mosque were suspended after the blast. Elnur Bakhshiyev, of Sumgayit city, charged of committing an act of terrorism in the mosque, has been arrested.
At late October, Narimanov District Court decided to restore activities of the mosque. However the decision was changed at the appeal of the Police Office later who was informed that the mosque is in danger of provocation.
Sheik noted that the way of construction of Abu Bakr mosque is an issue related with the management.
"I even opposed knocking down Armenian church. I can never support knocking down any worship place. If I support it, it means I am not a Sheik. If this mosque has been built illegally, it can not be destroyed. The mosque has already been built and it is operating. They could have prevented its illegal construction. There were probably some irregularities while the mosque was being constructed. It is the government who should determine it and those who did it should be held responsible for what they did," he added.
Pashazade said five or ten people forget about God and used Abu Bakr mosque for their own purposes.
"Religious men praying in this mosque do not have any guilt. Some people confuse these issues. The main point is persons who violate Azerbaijani Constitution, laws and freedom of conscience. Our duty is to implement freedom of conscience," Pashazade said.
Sheik hopes that the mosque will re-open as soon as investigation is completed.
"Media reports suggest that Sheik should find a common ground with vahhabits as this issue can be dramatized. They probably want to scare me. I have never been scared of vahhabits, Sunnites or Shiites. Regardless of what they are called, they are Muslims. Therefore, we should tell the truth," he noted.
Caucasus Muslims Clerical Board was not asked permission to build a mosque in the yard of hostel of the Baku State University and near Martyr's Lane.
"I was against the shape of minaret of the mosque near Martyr's Lane. But no one listened us. Some low ranking persons make illegal steps and then blame Caucasus Muslims Clerical Board for this," Pashazade said.
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