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Govt closely monitors activities concerning dawa, preaching.

Tawfiq Al-Sudairi

RIYADH: Deputy Minister of Islamic Affairs, Call, and Guidance Tawfiq Al-Sudairi has said there are specific controls and regulations for work in the field of religious guidance, and the ministry works hard to monitor any violations that may lead to the spread of deviant and extremist ideologies. He said the ministry emphasizes that imams prevent anyone wishing to make statements after obligatory prayers from doing so, unless they have the required permission from the ministry, noting that the ministry's duty is to monitor mosques through monitors or reports from citizens and residents through different media channels. There is also significant emphasis on encouraging youths to participate in various activities and programs that promote nationalism and combat terrorism and extremism. Regarding complaints from imams about people wishing to make statements after prayers, he said such acts are prohibited without necessary permission from the ministry, and such statements can only be made from time to time, not on a daily basis. As for some muezzins who use radios or mobile phones to call for prayer, rather than their own voices, he said the call to prayer is a ritual in Islam and every mosque has a salaried muezzin, and the ministry complies with regulations issued by fatwa organizations in the country regarding religious and legal matters, and does not allow for any violations of this. He said there are specific controls regarding loudspeakers at mosques, namely that only four speakers can be installed at each minaret with volume adjusted to moderate levels in order to avoid confusion with other mosques. The ministry is following up closely on such matters, including all reports and complaints filed by citizens and residents thorough social media and other means. As for programs targeting youths to prevent them from being drawn to deviant and extremist ideas, he said the ministry has a range of programs and intellectual awareness seminars that promote moderation, as well as speaking out against terrorism, extremism and fanaticism. One of the priorities of the ministry is to immunize youth and all members of society from such extremism, while teaching them the correct Shariah principles. He said numerous programs and seminars have been promoted throughout the Kingdom, including those that promote Qur'an memorization, understanding of national values, and the individual's role and responsibility in protecting Islam, national security, and social development.

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Publication:Arab News (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)
Date:Jul 28, 2016
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