Islamic scholars criticize bin Ladens sea burial

first_imgMuslim clerics said Monday that Osama bin Laden’s burial at sea was a violation of Islamic tradition that may further provoke militant calls for revenge attacks against American targets.Although there appears to be some room for debate over the burial — as with many issues within the faith — a wide range of senior Islamic scholars interpreted it as a humiliating disregard for the standard Muslim practice of placing the body in a grave with the head pointed toward the holy city of Mecca.Sea burials can be allowed, they said, but only in special cases where the death occurred aboard a ship.Bin Laden’s burial at sea “runs contrary to the principles of Islamic laws, religious values and humanitarian customs,” said Sheik Ahmed al-Tayeb, the grand Imam of Cairo’s al-Azhar mosque, Sunni Islam’s highest seat of learning.A radical cleric in Lebanon, Omar Bakri Mohammed, said, “The Americans want to humiliate Muslims through this burial, and I don’t think this is in the interest of the U.S. administration.”A U.S. official said the burial decision was made after concluding that it would have been difficult to find a country willing to accept the remains. There was also speculation about worry that a grave site could have become a rallying point for militants.last_img read more

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