Saudi’s Crown Prince Promises to Abandon Extreme Brand of Islam
Tuesday, the powerful Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia promised to abandon the Kingdom’s extreme brand of Islam that has inspired terrorists around the world in a fundamental religious shakeup in the historic cradle of the Muslim world.
“We are returning to what we were before, a country of moderate Islam that is open to all religions and to the world,” Prince Mohammed bin Salman, 32 anni, told an economic forum in the Saudi capital of Riyadh.
“We will not spend the next 30 years of our lives dealing with destructive ideas. We will destroy them today,” he said. “We will end extremism very soon.”
The Crown Prince will succeed King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud, 81 anni, when he dies or abdicates the throne. The King chose his son to replace his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef, as Crown Prince in a surprise move in June..
The new Crown Prince is seen as a reformer, who is believed to have persuaded the King to lift the ban on Saudi women driving last month.
In the 1970’s, Saudi Arabia began promoting a fundamentalist form of Islam known as Wahhabism, which applied a strict interpretation of the Koran with extreme punishments such as decapitation and amputations for crimes.
As the birthplace of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, Saudi Arabia exerts great influence among Muslims.