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Politicizing the pilgrimage
Published in Alriyadh on 15 - 08 - 2017

Haj is a ritual ordained by Allah Almighty to be performed at least once in a lifetime by all able-bodied and financially sound Muslims. Our Prophet, peace be upon him, says: "He who performs Haj seeking Allah's pleasure and avoids all lewdness and sins (therein) will return thereafter free from all sins, just as he was on the day his mother gave birth to him."
The Kingdom has overseen arrangements for the Haj for a long time. It has mobilized all its resources to enable Hajis perform their rituals with ease and comfort. The Saudis consider themselves to be servants of Hajis, reflecting the keenness of the Saudi government and people to serve Hajis.
Despite the tremendous efforts exerted by the Kingdom in the service of pilgrims, we hear errant voices raised seeking to politicize and internationalize the pilgrimage. These voices are not related to the Haj rituals at all. In fact, they run contrary to the teachings of the Holy Quran, which says, "The pilgrimage is in the appointed months. (For) whosoever undertakes the pilgrimage, there is no approaching (women), neither transgression nor disputing in the pilgrimage."
It is obvious that the forces that seeking to politicize the Haj have not read the Holy Quran and Sunnah.
All Muslims disapprove such attempts to politicize or internationalize the Haj. They see these attempts as malicious designs to separate Muslims from one another rather than unifying them in the holiest of places. These forces must heed the wider Muslim position and refrain from using the holy places to meet selfish, political ends.


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