The International Union of Muslim Scholars rejected Saudi trials of Muslim scholars and intellectuals, most notably the Assistant Secretary-General of the Union, Salman Al-Ouda.
In a statement, the Union rejected its classification as a terrorist organisation by some countries, referring to its role in exposing terrorism which was created by certain countries. The organisation also stated that demonising Muslim thinkers and imprisoning them for saying the truth is “a harbinger of doom and punishment.”
The Union called on the Muslim world, its dedicated leaders, pious scholars and intellectuals to intervene to release all prisoners of conscience and advice, including Al-Ouda. They also expressed deep concern and pain over the start of the trial of religious scholars, intellectuals, and reformers who are considered as prisoners of conscience, advice and piousness, namely Sheikh Salman Al-Ouda, Dr. Awad Al-Qarni, Dr. Khalid Al-Ajmi, Dr. Ali Al-Omari, in addition to Dr. Ali Badahdah, Sheikh Saleh Al-Taleb, Sheikh Abd Al-Aziz Al-Fawzan and others.”
The Union declared that “these pious scholars did not revolt against the state. They only offered their sincere advice without hypocrisy and favouritism, and their punishment was imprisonment in a country founded by Islam and the doctrine of Tawhid. There is no doubt that Islam is based on tolerance, patience and advice, along with guidance wisdom and sincere advice.”
The Union revealed confirmed information that some Saudi scholars asked for the king’s authorisation to join the Union through one of the ministries of the Saudi Royal Court under late King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz’s rule, and they were given the permission.
At the end of his statement, the International Union of Muslim Scholars stressed several points, including the categorical rejection of accusing the Union of terrorism and highlighting that the organisation is founded by a group of Muslim scholars who adopted a moderate approach. The Union also invited scholars and civil institutions to intervene to release prisoners of conscience in the Kingdom.