News / Middle East

Funeral Held for Top Syrian Cleric

People and officials attend funeral prayers for a senior pro-Syrian government Muslim cleric Mohammed al-Buti and his grandson Ahmad al-Buti, killed in a mosque explosion on Thursday, at Umayyad Mosque in Damascus, March 23, 2013.
People and officials attend funeral prayers for a senior pro-Syrian government Muslim cleric Mohammed al-Buti and his grandson Ahmad al-Buti, killed in a mosque explosion on Thursday, at Umayyad Mosque in Damascus, March 23, 2013.
Edward Yeranian
— A large crowd of Syrians turned out amid tight security Saturday for the funeral of slain Sunni cleric Mohammed al-Bouti, who died in what Syrian authorities say was a suicide-bombing in Damascus Thursday night.

Clerics, relatives and associates of the slain Sunni Muslim cleric Mohammed al-Bouti mourned his passing, chanting as they carried his white-draped coffin into Damascus' venerable Omeyyad Mosque, where he had preached for many years.

Syria's top pro-government Sunni religious figures sat in the front of the mosque, surrounding the coffins of al-Bouti and his grandson. Mufti Ahmad Badreddin al-Hassoun wiped away tears, as Religious Affairs Minister Mohammed Abdul Sattar al-Sayyed stared at the ground.

Mufti of Damascus Abdel Fattah al-Bezzem called al-Bouti a “martyr of the nation” and a "symbol of truth" for all Syrians.

He said that al-Bouti urged Syrians in his last sermon to return to God and make peace with him, admitting their mistakes... because their nation needs them to apologize and admit their wrong-doing.

Prominent Hezbollah official Mohammed Yazbeck eulogized the slain cleric, noting that he had come in the name of the Lebanese Shi'ite group's leader, Hassan Nasrallah. Yazbeck insisted that al-Bouti died in what he called "a battle against the enemies of humanity."

He said that U.S. President Barack Obama, in a speech Friday, called Israel the strongest power in the region and among the strongest in the world. He urged Muslims to not let the U.S. or Israel be stronger than the spirit of al-Bouti, whom he says died for Islam and Palestine.

Obama called the Lebanese Shi'ite Hezbollah group a terrorist organization in a speech Friday, alluding to its alleged participation in an attack on Israeli tourists in Bulgaria last summer.

Iran's Shi'ite cleric, Mohammed Ali Taskiry, also participated in the funeral ceremony, calling al-Bouti a "man of moderate views." He claimed that al-Bouti was killed to “prevent the light of his truth from shining.”

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad vowed Friday to avenge the death of the 84-year-old Sunni cleric, by ridding the country of Islamic extremists he claims killed al-Bouti. Mohammed al-Bouti was a long-time supporter of the Syrian president and his late father.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: MUSTAFA from: PAKISTAN
March 23, 2013 11:51 PM
This is the job of AL QAIDA and SAUDI ARABIA is the birth place of AL QAIDA. AL QAIDA in Syria has support of SAUDI ARABIA AND USA.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid