Saudi Arabian King Gives Controversial Islamic Cleric Top Award

220px-Dr_Zakir_NaikSaudi Arabia has long been criticized for its extreme religious beliefs as part of its devotion to Wahhabism. Now the Kingdom has generated more controversy by giving one of Saudi Arabia’s most prestigious prizes to Zakir Naik, an Islamic school who said that the Koran (Quran) “allows Muslims to have sex with female slaves” and seemed to support Osama Bin Laden, at least to the extent to which he was “fighting the enemies of Islam.” Saudi Arabia’s new King Salman gave Naik the King Faisal International Prize (KFIP) 2015 personally.

Naik, 49, has been barred from travel to Britain because of what the country cited as “unacceptable behavior.”

The statement on slaves came when the Indian Islamic scholar observed that “There are many verses in the Quran which say you can have sex with your wife and with whatever your right hand possesses. . . . Right hand possesses . . . which means your slaves.”

The King Faisal International Prize recognises the outstanding works of individuals and institutions in five categories — Service to Islam, Islamic Studies, Arabic Language and Literature, Medicine and Science. Naik received his award for awarded the KFIP for his services to Islam for a lifetime’s teaching about Islam, including his work founding of the Peace Channel, a comparative religion TV channel. He was given a handwritten Arabic certificate on the laureate’s achievements, a commemorative 24-carat 200-gram gold medal and a cheque of USD 200,000.

While Saudi Arabia has opposed such extremist groups like ISIS, the country continues to maintain medieval laws that deny women basic freedoms, deny basic freedoms of speech and religion to other faiths, and impose extreme Sharia law on its citizens.

118 thoughts on “Saudi Arabian King Gives Controversial Islamic Cleric Top Award”

  1. Well, this is hardly a surprise. They’ve been pretty clear on where they stand with human rights, women’s rights, gay rights, freedom of religion, and freedom of speech.

    Do we expect them to suddenly become tolerant?

  2. Mike
    You’ll get no quarrel with me there.
    My issue was the flip side of that, the judging of one’s closed system from the outside.
    Saudi Arabia is a closed system, Dr Naik is within/orbits that system, when the closed system and the orbiting body interact, any other system not bound to the same rules and laws cannot relate to it enough to judge it in an unbiased manner.
    Legitimacy is a thin line to walk on. The idea that personal autonomy is an inherent part of personal rights makes it so that one who chooses to relinquish them to a greater authority, even a theocratic government, can legitimately do so.
    Also, it is a matter ‘of degree, as everything is. The cohabitation in a democratic society requires one sacrifices some of that personal autonomy to, perhaps not the greater good, but to the greatest fear or pressure.
    The ban on the face veil is ‘one of such, in France.

  3. Po, the more contact one has with Paul, the more it becomes evident that to pay any attention to him is always a downward spiral.

  4. In my view, religious belief consists in the adoption of a set of tenets, the truth of which one has come to accept voluntarily through some combination of reason, faith and tradition. Just as it must be freely accepted, it may as freely be rejected. Neither the acceptance nor rejection of religious belief is subject to the approval or disapproval of any third person, whether acting individually or as the appointed representative of a religious or governmental body.

    Any system of law or social organization which punishes belief or unbelief interferes with the autonomy of the individual as a moral actor. Furthermore, since individual autonomy is central to the notion of personhood, it does not permit distinctions based upon gender.

    For these reasons, the only legitimate government is one which respects personal autonomy. To the extent that a government endorses religious belief by enacting legislation imposing it, or granting it favored status, it is illegitimate.

    There is no difference between a theocratic dictatorship and a secular dictatorship.

  5. Come on, Paul, will you next try to sell me a bridge in Brooklyn?
    The sky is still up, not down, though am sure you are tempted to argue the opposite right now 🙂

    1. po – all you have to do is answer my questions. Not that hard. Lot better than throwing ad hominem attacks around. Although maybe those are the new instructions from CAIR.

  6. Paul, tell your buddy Pongo he owes me an answer. I don’t know where he lives yet but I know a PI right here…

  7. Paul, Inga is A CONTRIBUTOR, in all caps. You could/should learn a lot from her.
    I know, learning is hard…:)

  8. Mike Appleton
    The award to Mr. Naik is insulting.
    Mike, insulting to whom?

  9. Paul C. Schulte
    po – ad hominem attack but a failure to overcome what I wrote.
    Paul, what did you write?
    You keep piggybacking on pogo and making false historical arguments…so what exactly did you say that needs addressing?

    1. po – prove that I am historically incorrect. Do you even read the stuff you cut and paste on here. You pasted several paragraphs supporting Islam and slavery.

  10. Pogo
    I fear you did not see my previous post, so let me repeat it so you can perhaps answer it:
    According to your logic however, the recent cases of domestic slavery by Indians and Philipinos in the US and Britain make the case that Hinduism and Christianity condone slavery?

  11. It would be equally as insulting if the President gave the Fundamentalist preacher Scott Lively a similar award. Thank common sense we are a secular government.

  12. Pogo
    This was my question, below.
    “Where is Islam back into slavery? Why, did another Quran come and said slavery was re-allowed? Are you working on one?”
    Notice the mention of Quran, as the source for guidance, not ISL.
    According to your logic however, the recent cases of domestic slavery by Indians and Philipinos in the US and Britain make the case that Hinduism and Christianity condone slavery?

  13. ‘Outrageous’: Saudi diplomat who kept workers in ‘slavery’ immune from law

    “A Saudi diplomat who was accused of trafficking two women and treating them like slaves has been told he will not have to compensate them because he is protected by diplomatic immunity.

    Titin Suryadi and Cherrylyn Reyes alleged they had been treated as domestic slaves, working up to 17 hours a day and being paid below minimum wage by Jarallah al-Malki and his wife.

    Reyes, a Philippine national, worked for the couple from the day she arrived in the UK in January 2011 until March 14 that year, when she left with the assistance of the police.

    Suryadi, who is from Indonesia, replaced Reyes and worked for four months until September 19, 2011, when she escaped the residence while Al-Malki was away and his wife was asleep.

    During their time working for the couple their passports were confiscated, they were forbidden to leave the property, and they were not allowed to contact their families, they said.

    While the court acknowledged that Reyes was a victim of trafficking, they nonetheless upheld an earlier decision made by an Employment Tribunal, that Al-Malki was protected because of his diplomatic status.”

    1. Inga – quit thread hijacking. We are on a single subject. Stick to it.

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