Saudi Arabia is spending $1 billion to build 560 mosques in Bangladesh. The investment is being plugged as the Saudis way of pushing Wahhabism, also known as a form of Sunni Islam that has a literal interpretation of the Koran. In other words, the violent side of the Koran. According to one historian, this is the first step in Saudi Arabia’s much bigger plan to spread Islam around the world.
“Saudi Arabia is investing in buildings, organizations, media and people,” said historian and founder of the Middle East Forum Daniel Pipes to Fox News. “Hundreds of billions of dollars later, Wahhabism is a powerful global force. One can see in many regions the impact of this decades-long campaign, from the United States to the Balkans to Pakistan to Indonesia. The Saudis continue to pour vast resources into building further Wahhabi infrastructure in multiple countries.”
Although Islam is the most common religion in Bangladesh, the most common version is Sufism, which is a much more moderate version. The religious minorities, such as Hindus, Buddhists and Christians, are concerned about the mosque project, according to Pipes. There have been a number of attacks committed by Islamic extremists in Bangladesh the past four years. Fear is the radicalization will continue to grow with this new investment.
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