According to the State Department, Qatar’s government provides preachers with guidance for Friday sermons, reviews content, and reserves the right to take judicial action against clerics who fail to adhere to such guidelines. Yet far from punishing or at least disavowing Muraikhi’s anti-Semitic rhetoric, Qatar’s government promoted his sermon both before and afterward, and broadcast it on official media.
Qatar’s government did the same when a preacher named Abdullah al-Naama delivered an extremist sermon at the Grand Mosque on July 21st, 2017. In fact, Naama and Muraikhi have been the only preachers selected to deliver weekly Friday sermons at the Grand Mosque since that date. And Qatar should already have known such incitement was a distinct possibility, since both men have engaged in it before.
In Naama’s July 21st sermon, he warned Muslims that their “most dangerous enemies” are Muslim hypocrites, who he says are even “more dangerous to Islam than the Jews and the Christians.” Naama declared that Muslim hypocrites resort “to the Jews and the polytheists as a refuge” and that they “are among the ranks of the adversary, for where are they during [literally “from”] the defiling of the Holy Sanctuary?”, accusing Israel of desecrating the Temple Mount.
Naama went on about such Muslim hypocrites, imploring “where are they during the siege of Gaza? Where are they during the Holocausts of Muslims in several places?” He argues that “the great betrayal” by Muslim hypocrites is over Palestine, apparently suggesting that treating Israel with anything but overt hostility is a betrayal of Islam. Naama, who has previously praised what he called Gaza’s “mujahideen,” concluded his sermon by beseeching all Muslims to accept it as their “great duty… to aid our brothers there, with one’s self, and money, and prayer, and extending the hand of support and aid with all of one’s strength and means.”
Qatar has also continued to host extremist preachers at the mosque that services the learning institutions on Qatar’s Education City campus, including satellite campuses for Cornell, Texas A&M, Virginia Commonwealth, Carnegie Mellon, Northwestern, and Georgetown Universities. In 2015 and 2016, several guest preachers propagated egregious incitement against non-Muslims during their sermons at the Education City Mosque. And in June 2017, the Education City Mosque hosted a series of lectures by Mohammed Rateb al-Nabulsi, a preacher who has previously labeled all Jews as combatants and who advocates executing gay men.
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