‘Reject Daesh and avoid prison’

In this April 26, 2015 photo, a former militant enters a courtyard at the Mohammed bin Naif Center for Advice, Counselling and Care, as the rehab center is formally known, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

In this April 26, 2015 photo, a former militant enters a courtyard at the Mohammed bin Naif Center for Advice, Counselling and Care, as the rehab center is formally known, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.


Supporters of the Daesh terrorist group who eventually come to their senses and reject the organization’s extremist ideology would be forgiven and not imprisoned.

This is according to Ahmad Al-Ruthaiman, professor of religion and intellectual security at Hail University and member of the counseling committee at the Ministry of Interior. He said this was the policy of the current Saudi government.

Al-Ruthaiman said the government does not want to imprison its citizens, according to a report in a local publication recently. He made the comment while answering questions from secondary school students on several topics including Khawarij and Takfiri groups.

During the meeting, Al-Ruthaiman said that the Kingdom was a prestigious nation because of its religious and economic status. He warned that the enemies of Islam were using young Muslims to carry out destructive acts.

However, he said these extremists would not succeed in their aims in the Kingdom because the youth stood united against attempts to divide the country.

During a discussion on social networking sites, he warned students not to believe everything they read online, especially the posts from groups such as Daesh and Al-Nusra.

They should only trust the views espoused by trusted scholars. He also explained what constitutes Jihad, including prohibitions.

Meanwhile, the Education Ministry has announced that it would take action against teachers, students and administrative staff at schools who spread extremist views and criticize the government.

If such an incident is reported, the ministry would call security officers to deal with the situation, said Mubarak Al-Osaimi, the ministry’s spokesperson. Schools must implement these directives, he said.

He said the ministry also requires that schools set up counseling committees to discuss violations and inform their local education department. Students who violate these rules could be expelled for one year.

If they are expelled, they can only return by undergoing counseling and writing a letter promising they would behave properly and respect the country’s laws and regulations.

Teachers and administrative staff found supporting extremist groups would be dismissed immediately. All schools must institute awareness programs to warn teachers and students about the dangers of extremism.


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