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Qom, Najaf call for improved relations with Saudi Arabia

Prominent religious authorities in both Qom and Najaf have called on political leaders in their countries to improve their relations with Saudi Arabia after the latter took a strict stance against Salafist jihadism.
Clerics speak on the campus of the Seminary in Qom, 120 km (75 miles) south of Tehran February 3, 2009. REUTERS/Caren Firouz  (IRAN) - RTXB72L
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Clerics and religious institutions in the Middle East can play a dual role in society, either pouring oil or water on the flames of conflicts.

Prominent religious authorities in Iran's Qom and Iraq's Najaf have simultaneously called on the political leaders in their respective countries to improve relations with Saudi Arabia. The authorities stated that this move would be in the interest of all Muslims and would unite them in their struggle against terrorism and religious extremism. The request followed Saudi Arabia's adoption of a strict stance against Salafist jihadism, and pledging to reform domestic and foreign policies.

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