THE Arab civilisation is crumbling, said PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang, days after a global ulama association that he is a part of was branded a terrorist group by Saudi Arabia.

Hadi, who in the past was accused of labelling his Malay-Muslim political rivals as infidels, today criticised certain Arab countries for “punishing other Muslims”.

“They heavily punish countries with whom they share a common religion simply because of differing opinions,” Hadi said in a statement.

He did not mention Saudi Arabia or the bloc of Gulf nations currently allied to it, but there is little doubt who he was referring to.

On Friday, the Saudi government declared the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS), and the International Islamic Council ‘Massaa’ as terrorist groups.

Hadi is vice-president of IUMS, a group that claims to have connections with more than 90,000 Muslim scholars worldwide and which aims to heal divisions between Sunni and Shia Muslims.

IUMS is based in Qatar, a Gulf country that has been ostracised by a Saudi-led quartet comprising Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt.

Global affairs analysts have said Saudi Arabia’s efforts to isolate Qatar, its meddling in the Syrian civil war and its war in Yemen were part of a larger campaign to check Iran’s growing influence in the Middle East.

Malaysia has maintained ties with countries in the Saudi bloc and Qatar.

Eleven individuals were also placed on the quartet’s terror list for disseminating and supporting terrorism. Hadi was not one of the 11.

Hadi said he was not surprised by the new terrorist list as it came from countries that had severed ties with Qatar.

“These are the same countries that are pursuing normalisation of relations with Israel and countries within the Mason – International Zionist network,” Hadi wrote in today’s statement.

“They no longer have the will to act independently and righteously amid their failure to learn from their own long history of tyranny.”  

Hadi has criticised Saudi Arabia’s increasingly friendly relations with Israel, a country widely vilified by Malay Muslims.

“They shif stances to fit their desires, becoming timid in front of infidels but behaving harshly against the believers, all the while glorifying their Zionist guests above their fellow brethren,” Hadi said.

“To make things worse, they heavily punish countries with whom they share a common religion simply because of differing opinions”.

“The Arab civilisation was respected because of Islam but is now crumbling under the weight of its own crimes by recognising the Zionist regime and neglecting Palestine and its rights.”-MI

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