Teachers warned: Abide by new anti-terror laws

Updated 17 March 2014
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Teachers warned: Abide by new anti-terror laws

Education Minister Prince Khaled Al-Faisal has urged all schoolteachers to abide by the Kingdom’s new anti-terror laws and ensure they teach their students about correct Islamic practices and to remain loyal to their country.
His comments come in the wake of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, through the Interior Ministry, banning several extremist and terrorist organizations, and instituting jail terms of up to 20 years for citizens fighting in conflicts abroad.
“The ministry has warned people against joining, supporting or funding any groups that have been listed as terrorist organizations.”
The minister said that it was necessary to safeguard Islam, the unity of the Ummah, and the Kingdom’s security and stability.
Prince Khaled said divisions and disunity among Muslims across the Islamic world have weakened the Ummah. Various sectarian groups are fighting each other to realize their vested political and other interests.
He said the government remained committed to protecting education and the true values of Islam from these divisive forces.
“We have to enlighten our students about the dangers that surround them, teach them their religion properly, and encourage them to show allegiance toward their country and leadership,” the prince said.
Prince Khaled said the ministry would not allow educators to promote sectarian ideologies at schools, or have discussions on these banned viewpoints with fellow colleagues and students.
He said all education sector employees must follow the government’s instructions to the letter, and rely on knowledgeable Islamic scholars in the country.
“This is essential to protect the Kingdom’s unity and cohesion and prevent the emergence of sectarian groups in the Kingdom.” He also cautioned them to be aware of information on social media networks that contain lies about the Kingdom, its leaders and Islamic scholars.
He warned that the government would take tough action against those fighting in conflicts abroad.
Prince Khaled urged education directors across the country to hold urgent meetings with officials to implement the directives of the king and interior ministry.


Christchurch Muslims praise King Salman’s Hajj offer

Updated 19 July 2019
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Christchurch Muslims praise King Salman’s Hajj offer

  • The president of the Muslim Association of Canterbury Shagaf Khan said people will be both financially and spiritually supported during the journey
  • Khan said a trip to Makkah would normally cost around 10,000 New Zealand dollars ($6,769), but King Salman’s offer would cover pilgrims “from the time they leave their house and come back”

CHRISTCHURCH: King Salman’s Hajj offer to host families of those affected by March’s Christchurch terror attacks is “something really special,” said the president of the Muslim Association of Canterbury, Shagaf Khan.
The Saudi king has offered to host and cover the expenses of 200 Hajj pilgrims when they journey to Makkah this year.
Khan said people will be both financially and spiritually supported during the journey. “For some of them, it’ll be a great comfort feeling like they’ve fulfilled the obligations of being a Muslim,” he added.
Khan said a trip to Makkah would normally cost around 10,000 New Zealand dollars ($6,769), but King Salman’s offer would cover pilgrims “from the time they leave their house and come back.”
When asked what the offer would mean for Canterbury’s Muslim community, Khan said it is part of the solidarity and support that has been shown to them since the Christchurch terror attacks, which claimed the lives of 51 people.
“Four months on … people still feel supported and they feel they’re still being remembered,” he added.
Sheikh Mohammed Amir, who is working closely with the local community, Saudi Arabia’s Embassy and its Ministry of Islamic Affairs to implement King Salman’s offer, said it will be available for those who had lost family members or been injured in the mosque attacks.
Canterbury’s Muslims are “very appreciative” of the offer, added Amir, who is chairman of the Islamic Scholars Board of New Zealand.
“I’ll say with full confidence that this will be a big relief for the deceased’s families, for the victims, for all those who’ve been injured and affected,” he said.
When asked how the organization of the pilgrimage is going, Amir said “so far, so good,” but added that it has been challenging without official records to track everyone down.
He said it is an honor and a responsibility to help organize the pilgrimage, which he has been helping to plan since the end of Ramadan. “People are very excited about it,” he added.
He said he believed that the king’s offer had been made to help people’s rehabilitation after the terror attacks.
“The community believes he’s going to contribute in building Christchurch and bringing people to a normal life,” Amir added.