PRESS RELEASE-AHMADIYYA MUSLIM JAMA’AT - SRI LANKA 619/4, Baseline Road, Colombo 9, Sri Lanka

A recent report highlighted the continued persecution of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Saudi Arabia. (Yemen Times 19 March 2008) The report stated that the Saudi Government was trying to modernize its Education System by issuing new school textbooks, however these continued to describe members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community as ‘heretical’. Thus the systematic and institutionalized persecution continues.

It is most unfortunate that the Saudi Government, which calls itself an Islamic Government, in fact acts in the most un-Islamic way. The Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) himself taught that no one had the right to call another person a non-Muslim if that person counted himself as such. And yet in their most basic literature the Saudi Government contravene this fundamental teaching by virtue of its policy of religious exclusion.

Abdul Aziz, the Press Secretary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Sri Lanka said:

“It is very disappointing that the Saudi authorities continue to class the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community as heretical. The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is the only sect of Islam which can truthfully lay claim to practicing and preaching the true message of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) which was one of peace, inclusion and forbearance.”

Ahmadi Muslims have continued to suffer great persecution in Saudi Arabia for many years. This persecution intensified in late 2005 and early 2006 when the Saudi authorities embarked upon a nationwide campaign to arrest and deport Ahmadis for no reason other than their faith.

Sarah Leah Whitson, the Middle East Director at Human Rights Watch said:

“The Saudi Government’s persecution of Ahmadis on the basis of their faith is turning Saudi Arabia into a byword for religious intolerance”.

It is hoped that the Saudi authorities bring an end to the overt and covert persecution of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community and allow peoples of all faiths to co-exist peacefully as per the true teachings of Islam.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community (AMC) is a dynamic, reformist, and fast growing international Community within Islam. Founded in March 23, 1889 AMC is the only Islamic community to believe that the long-awaited Messiah has come in the person of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835-1908) of Qadian, peace be on him, claimed to be the metaphorical second coming of Jesus (peace be on him) of Nazareth and the divine guide, whose advent was foretold by the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad, (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) AMC spans over 190 countries with membership exceeding tens of millions.

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