Chechen Mufti Salah Mezhiev has called for a radical branch of Islam to be registered as an “extremist sect” in a bid to stop its spread across Russia.
Mezhiev claimed that Wahhabism — the
fundamentalist branch of Sunni Islam which originates in Saudi Arabia —
should be declared an “extremist sect,” the Interfax news
agency reported Tuesday.
He called the movement a “phenomenon” spreading throughout central Russia and Siberia, and called on Russian Muslims to “make a stand.”
"Wahhabism should be recognized as
a sect and banned at a government level," Mezhiev told
The religious leader also called on the Russian media not to refer to terrorists as “jihadis.”
“Jihad is about
adhering to the norms of Islam,” he said. “These people should be
Mezhiev made the comments following the
World Conference of Muslim Scholars, which was held in late August in
Grozny. The conference issued a religious ruling which referred to
Wahhabism as a “misguided sect.”