Saudi Destruction of Jannatul Baqi

Dated: July 10, 2016

As we approach the  Islamic date 8th Shawwal on Wednesday 13th July, we offer our condolences to the Imam of our time, Imam Mahdi (AS) and all believers for the painful anniversary of the savage and barbaric destruction of the graves of the Prophet’s family and loved companions in Jannatul Baqi, Madinah, and in other areas that came under Saudi control. On  this date in 1925  the oppressive Saudi Wahhabi regime razed the graves of our pious illustrious role models, under the pretext that grave building was prohibited by the Prophet (pbuh).

The Saudi regime follows a violent, extremist and perverted interpretation of Islam which seeks to distort our connections with the past, so that no moral and legal challenges can be made to its unIslamic version of Islam. Hence, the regime sets out systematically to distance the Ummah from the Prophet and his message. This has been done by trying to obliterate places of utmost importance that connect us with the Prophet and his appointed successors from his holy household – his home, his family’s graves in Makkah, Madinah, and places of other significance were deliberately and violently demolished. Figures revered by both Shias and Sunnis are buried here, from wives of the Prophet to family and companions.

The regime cleverly justified this by giving its unlawful actions a ‘religious’ flavour through spurious fabricated hadiths that shrines should not be constructed and graves should not be visited. It argues that the graves are worshipped. There could not be a worse fabricated allegation levelled at sincere Muslims visiting their beloved Prophet and his followers’ graves. If we undertake even a slight amount of research, then we discover that the visiting of graves and praying for the deceased is mentioned in the Quran, and that the Prophet himself used to regularly visit the graves of loved departed souls. The Saudis however prevent pilgrims from visiting the destroyed unnamed graves to pray and offer greetings.

Every culture honours its deceased, and every civilisation honours its past history. Whereas other societies erect museums to preserve their antiquity, the Saudi regime in Arabia takes out bulldozers to erase ours! Indeed it is not their history that the Saudis are attacking, it is the entire Muslim world’s!

This same ideology is the driving force behind the Taliban destroying the Buddha statues in Bamyan Afghanistan and ISIS destroying the graves of Sahaba in Syria, Yemen, and Iraq. The root cause of all this destruction and mayhem is the theology of Ibn Taymiyah, a 14th century subversive extremist who is the inspiration behind ISIS and Saudi wahabism. Ironically, his own grave, a constructed momument, exists in Damascus.

The Saudis tell us that to destroy graves and reduce them to a pile of mud is a sign of simplicity of living like the Prophet (pbuh). However this is illogical, because firstly the Prophet was very civilised, and a nation builder, not destroyer. Secondly the Saudis are constructing huge expensive monstrous palaces in which they live: when did the Prophet of Islam ever condone such materialism let alone live like that?

The conclusion then that any reasonable person must draw is that Wahabism is a material ideology seeking power and wealth, using religion to oppress the masses. It must therefore be opposed and overturned.

This year, we saw the brutal unlawful execution of Shaikh Nimr by the Saudis; last year we saw the horrific deaths of hundreds of pilgrims in the stampede at Hajj; and today we are seeing the relentless unlawful bombing of Yemen by the Saudi regime, killing civilians. This proves that the Saudi regime is a barbaric blot on earth, and the Saudis are not at all worthy of being custodians of the Islamic holy sites. Therefore this heritage must be handed over to a global Muslim committee for preservation.

We ask all believers to join international and local protests on 8 Shawwal, 13th July, to protest at this savagery and to lead campaigns for the rebuilding and reconstruction of the graves. We ask the UN and UNESCO to recognise Jannatul Baqi in Madinah and Jannatul Muallah in Makkah as historic sites to be preserved and accord them international heritage status and protection. And we ask the Muslim world to form a coalition committee for the preservation of these sites.

May Allah hasten the day when we can see the graves of the Prophet’s family (pbut) and followers restored to their previous glory so that we may preserve the past and our links with it.

Sayed Mohammad Al-Musawi
World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League (WABIL)
London, United Kingdom

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