Hawzah News Agency (Qom, Iran) – Since the start of Bahraini popular uprisings in 2011, Shia scholars have continuously voiced their solidarity with Ayatollah Shaykh Isa Qassim, Bahraini’s spiritual leader, as well as with the people of Bahrain. They have slammed the inhumane atrocities being carried out by Al Khalifah regime in Bahrain all along. Since we’re approaching the days of Shaykh Isa Qassim’s final trial on March 14, Hawzah News publishes some excerpts of Shia scholars’ stances in which they have voiced support for Isa Qassim and the Bahraini Shias:
Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei
Ayatollah Khamenei made the following observations regarding conflict in Bahrain: “In Bahrain there is an authoritarian and egotistic minority oppressing a majority. And now they are attacking the perseverant and knowledgeable scholar Shaykh Isa Qassim; this is blatant foolishness and insanity. Shaykh Isa is the type of man who would prevent extremist tactics. Therefore, these illogical individuals do not understand that by removing Shaykh Isa Qassim they are removing obstacles from the Bahraini, enthusiastic, youth against the regime. Now, no obstacle can prevent these young enthusiasts from rising up.
Ayatollah Sistani to Shaykh Qassim: Your Place is our Hearts, What happened doesn’t harm you
Religious scholar Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Sistani phone called Ayatollah Shaykh Issa Qassim and after reassuring Shaykh Qassim's wellbeing, Sayyed Sistani expressed special affection and stressed Ayatollah Qassim's special dearness in his heart.
"Your place is in our hearts, and what happened doesn't harm you," Sayyed Sistani said commenting on the Bahraini authorities' revocation of his eminence's citizenship.
Sayyed Sistani further thanked Ayatollah Qassim's efforts in peacefully defending the rights of the Bahraini people.
Finally, he ended his call with prayers for Allah to protect Sheikh Qassim and Bahraini believers, promising he will offer as much as he can to serve and defend this cause.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi warns Al Khalifah
Grand Ayatollah Nasser Makarem Shirazi warned the Al Khalifah Regime to put an end to their inhumane crimes against Shias in Bahrain saying, “You must learn your lesson by looking at what happened to dictators like the Shah of Iran and Libya’s Gadhafi, the same fate is awaiting you”
Ayatollah Lotfollah Safi Golpaygani
“I condemn revoking the citizenship of Shaykh Isa Qassim and I urge all Islamic scholars and international human rights bodies not to remain silent in the face of this ugly and inhumane action and to act swiftly in resolving this foolish decision that will have grave consequences.
Ayatollah Jafar Sobhani
Ayatollah Sobhani also voiced his support for Bahraini Shias’ spiritual leader, reiterating, “It’s a religious obligation for all Bahrainis to protect and defend Ayatollah Shaykh Isa Qassim; he’s considered as the spiritual leader of Shia Muslims in Bahrain.”
“If I were in Bahrain, I would join the sit-in outside Shaykh Isa Qassim’s house in Diraz village to protect him; If Al Khalifah rulers are wise, they will listen to his advice because they offer invaluable lessons.”
Ayatollah Javadi Amoli
"Allah (swt) will help and protect us in the path of protecting Islam; the same way he protected Iran's Islamic Revolution, led by the late Imam Khomeini (ra), to reach final victory. According to Islamic hadiths and prayers, a corrupt territory does not become clean and pure unless by its people's uprising, resistance and martyrdom and the same holds true for Bahrain’s current conditions."
Ayatollah Sayyed Muhammad Saeed Hakim
“I’m deeply concerned about Shaykh Isa Qassim’s conditions and ask Bahraini rulers to stop harming Shaykh Qassim and the faithful people of Bahrain.
Ayatollah Sayyed Kadhim Haeri
In a statement, Ayatollah Haeri asserted: “Today, defending Islam, leadership authority of Bahraini’s Shia source of emulation is one of the greatest religious duties for the people of Bahrain.”
“It’s considered as a religious obligation for all the faithful Muslims to make endeavors in order to protect Islam, its sanctities and Ayatollah Isa Qassim; they must wisely protect Shaykh Qassim from Al Khalifah atrocities.”
Ayatollah Sayyed Muhammad Taqi Modarresi
“Al Khalifah’s pressure on Ayatollah Qassim only results in sectarian discord in Bahrain. We need to increase the pressure on Bahraini regime so they put an end to their inhumane crimes against the Shia source of emulation and Shia scholars.
Ayatollah Sayyed Mahmoud Shahroudi
Reiterating that he is proud of Shaykh Qassim’s eminent Islamic and national stature in Bahrain, Ayatollah Shahroudi said, “Ayatollah Qassim is regarded as an iconic figure for Shi’ism, Islam and the whole Muslim community; this great character is playing a vital role in Bahrain.”
Condemning Al Khalifah for stripping Shaykh Qassim of his citizenship, Ayatollah Shahroudi announced his readiness to carry out any efforts necessary to protect Shaykh Isa Qassim.
Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi
“Shaykh Isa Qassim is considered as a true symbol of piety in life, manners so much that he resembles Allah’s most noble adherents. “
He said that patience and resistance are two necessary components of reaching victory for the Bahraini revolution and added, “Undoubtedly, Bahraini people’s oppression will not last long; soon the righteous will overcome the corrupt.”
"The legitimate demands of Bahraini Shias' have been denied by Al Khalifah's inhumane oppressive measures; unfortunately, Bahraini rulers’ propaganda on human rights has proven to be insincere."
The Senior Iranian cleric expressed hope that voicing solidarity with Bahraini Shias would make Al Khalifah rulers listen to their citizens' call for justice and respect Bahraini Shias' legitimate demands in supporting Ayatollah Shaykh Isa Qassim, their spiritual leader.
In the end, Head of Iranian Islamic seminaries warned Al Khalifah regime by saying, "If the Bahraini court issues unfair verdicts to convict Shia scholars and revolutionary activists, they must expect an overwhelming response from the citizens of Bahrain."