Syrian Islamic Council: Mufti’s Meeting with Haniyeh to Discourage Hamas from Normalizing with Regime

The Syrian Islamic Council said it rejects the Iranian axis, but also normalization with Israel, according to Syria TV,

The Syrian Islamic Council issued a video statement read out by its spokesman Sheikh Moutee’ al-Bateen, explaining the leaked recording in which the (opposition) Grand Mufti of the Syrian Arab Republic, Sheikh Osama al-Rifai, appeared alongside Ismail Haniyeh, head of Hamas’ political bureau. The recording provoked anger among Syrians.

Rifai, along with several Scholars of Islamic Countries in Istanbul, Turkey, attended a session honouring Saji Wissam Haniyeh, granddaughter of Ismail Haniyeh, for completing the preservation of the Holy Quran in full. This provoked angry Syrian reactions, especially since the meeting came days after the “movement’s” statements to normalize relations with the Syrian regime.

“The meeting of the scholars, led by Sheikh Osama al-Rifai, with the Hamas leadership was for the sole purpose of alerting the movement to discourage it from the decision to re-establish its relationship with the criminal regime,” the spokesman said in the statement.

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He added: “During the meeting, a clear message was delivered from the scholars of the Islamic world in general and the Syrian Islamic Council in particular, that if the movement does not respond to the request of the scholars, the Syrian Islamic Council will issue a separate statement on this dangerous decision. The same applies to all other scholars who are still waiting for an answer.” 

Bateen said the meeting lasted for many hours and focused on the seriousness of Hamas’ decision to restore relations with the regime.

The leaked photo “took place on the sidelines of the meeting, without prior arrangement at its conclusion, before the scholars left,” the spokesman said.

“The Syrian Islamic Council weighs the positions of countries, groups and individuals, near or far, in the scale of the Syrian revolution against the Syrian regime.”

The statement stressed the Syrian Islamic Council’s rejection of the Iranian alliance, its support for the just Palestinian cause, and its refusal to normalize with the Israeli entity.


This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.


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