Saudi, Qatar attempt to spreading Wahhabism in Afghanistan: Top cleric

A top Afghan cleric warned of attempts by Saudi Arabia and Qatar at spreading Wahhabism in Afghanistan, stressing that both Shiite and Sunni groups are in defiant of emergence of the ideology in his country.

“At present, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are attempting to attract Afghanistan’s Sunni society and convert them to Wahhabism, and are directly donating part of their oil incomes to promotion of such cult in Afghanistan,” Hojatoleslam Ali Tavassoli, member of the executive commission of the Afghan Shiite clerics council said.

The fact that certain extremist clerics within the Sunni society benefit from Saudi Arabia’s financial supports justifies Riyadh’s attempts to push for the spread of Wahhabism, he concluded.

However, Tavassoli added, the Afghan society, including the “Sunni brothers” in the country, will not allow extremist groups with affiliations with Wahhabism to emerge in Afghanistan.

While Wahhabism has adherents in its birthplace Saudi Arabia and elsewhere, Muslims detest it, because it considers Shiites and followers of other non-Sunni sects to be infidels.

Some blame Saudi Arabia’s promotion of Wahhabism abroad for giving theological fuel to terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), an accusation Saudi officials reject.