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Over 1,500 Extremists Freed After Repenting

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Over 1,500 Extremists Freed After Repenting

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Over 1,500 Extremists Freed After Repenting

  1. 1. Over 1,500 Extremists Freed After Repenting Arab News RIYADH, 26 November 2007 - Saudi authorities have released more than 1,500 reformed extremists, who were detained on charges of embracing and spreading takfeer (the ideology that brands other Muslims who disagree with them as infidels). The extremists, under the guidance of the Ministry of Interior, had undergone lengthy counseling, according to Muhammad Al-Nujaimi, a member of the Counseling Committee and professor of comparative jurisprudence at the King Fahd Security College. Al-Nujaimi told Al-Watan newspaper that the Counseling Committee, which is the brainchild of Prince Muhammad ibn Naif, assistant minister of interior for security affairs, was established in 2004 with the approval of Interior Minister Prince Naif. The Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Endowments, Call and Guidance jointly supervise activities of the committee comprising 100 members. Members include religious scholars, preachers, specialists in religious doctrine and law, psychologists and social workers. The committee is tasked with the duty of reforming youths in an intellectual and rational manner on the basis of Shariah. "The committee has met around 5,000 times to offer counseling to 3,200 people, who were accused of embracing the takfeer ideology. The committee has successfully completed reforming 1,500 people," Al-Nujaimi said. The suspects were largely confused about the meaning of jihad, which led to their believing in committing blind violence. They also viewed that the present Muslim rulers, scholars and public were infidels, and therefore demanded the establishment of a single Islamic state, said Al-Nujaimi. "After several graded sessions with the committee, and having been convinced of their misguided vision, they renounced their erroneous ideologies, including the concept of driving out all infidels from the Arabian Peninsula," he said. The committee first evaluates the personality and the ideological crisis suffered by the suspect, and then decides on how to clean his mind of the mistaken impressions, said Al- Nujaimi. The committee in the later stages of counseling holds several sessions on the concept of obedience to a ruler, loyalty, conditions for baiat (declaration of allegiance to a ruler) and the mistaken concept of murder and violence without guilt.

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