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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Somali rage at grave desecration

This is what happens when you have a bunch of fundamentalists (of any religion) taking over a country.  Even we in faraway Singapore have to bear this in mind and be vigilant in upholding the secular nature of our republic. I have a soft spot for Somalia given my 2008 visit to the northern breakaway part of this country (known as Somaliland: see http://twcnomad.blogspot.com/search/label/Somaliland) and feel sad for its further fall into the abyss.
 

Somali rage at grave desecration

Destroyed graves
The contents of the Sufi graves have been left in the open

By Mohamed Mohamed 
BBC Somali Service

Since they began to capture large swathes of southern Somalia, radical Islamists have been undertaking a programme of destroying mosques and the graves of revered religious leaders from the Sufi branch of Islam.

The destruction of non-approved religious sites started last year when they began to knock down an old colonial era church in the town of Kismayo.

Most Somalis are Sufi Muslims, who do not share the strict Saudi Arabian-inspired Wahhabi interpretation of Islam with the hardline al-Shabab group.

 The living person can at least defend himself, but the dead cannot... destroying graves is despicable 
Mohamed Sheikh

They embrace music, dancing and meditation and are appalled at the desecration of the graves.

But al-Shabab sees things differently.

The group's spokesman in the town of Kismayo, Sheikh Hassan Yaquub, told the BBC Somali Service that his movement considered that the memorials were being worshipped and that this was idolatry - banned by Islam.

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