“JEDDAH – A question live on television to a member of the Board of Senior Ulema over gender segregation at the King Abdul Aziz University of Science and Technology (Kaust) has sparked debate in the local press and public.
Sheikh Sa’ad Bin Nasser Al-Shithri, when asked on Sunday by a Qatari viewer of the Al-Majd channel for his position on the university and the “mixing of the sexes in the land of the Two Holy Mosques,” responded by describing such a thing as unacceptable and called for a Shariah Committee to look into the studies being conducted at the university and their compatibility with Shariah Law.”
“JEDDAH // King Abdullah’s decision to relieve a senior scholar of his duties has disappointed intellectuals and rights activists, and raised questions about both the level of extremism in the Saudi liberal stream and the place of secularism in the ultra-conservative Islamic kingdom. King Abdullah issued a royal decree on Sunday relieving Sheikh Saad al Shethri, a young university professor who was appointed this year to the Council of Senior Islamic Scholars, of his duties as a member of the council and the fatwa-ruling body.
The king’s decision came a few days after liberal newspapers and writers condemned Sheikh al Shethri for his controversial statement last week on the al Majad Islamic TV channel questioning the appropriateness of co-education at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (Kaust) and calling for a Sharia committee to monitor the compatibility of studies being conducted at the international university with Islamic law.”