World Bulletin / News Desk
Rachid Ghannouchi, the head of Tunisia's Ennahda movement, predicted that the new leadership of Gulf powerhouse Saudi Arabia will adopt a mediatory role in Egypt and Syria.
"I expect [new] King Salman bin Abdulaziz to lead reconciliation efforts in the region and specifically in Egypt and Syria," Ghannouchi told The Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview, excerpts of which were published on Thursday.
King Salman became the new monarch of the oil-rich monarchy late last month after the death of his older half-brother King Abdullah at the age of 90.
Under Abdullah's tenure, Saudi Arabia was among the first countries to support - both diplomatically and financially - Egypt's government which followed the ouster of elected Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in the summer of 2013.
Following Morsi's ouster, Egyptian authorities launched a deadly crackdown on Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood group which saw hundreds of protesters killed and thousands said to have been thrown in jail.
Saudi Arabia has also labeled the Brotherhood a "terrorist organization," a few months after Egypt designated the decades-old group as such, while Morsi's supporters continue to rally for his reinstatement.
During King Abdullah's rule, Saudi Arabia also openly backed Syria's armed opposition groups against the regime of Bashar al-Assad throughout Syria's uprising-turned-civil war which erupted in 2011.
"Exclusionary policies do not resolve crises," Ghannouchi said. "The only way to evade chaos and infighting in any country is by reaching consensus between its major forces."
ISIL execution of Jordan pilot
Ghannouchi has deplored the immolation of Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasba by the ISIL.
"Execution by fire is a brutal act which has never been part of Islamic history," Ghannouchi, whose group holds the second most number of seats in the Tunisian parliament said.
An online video purportedly showing al-Kasasba being burnt alive inside a makeshift cage set up by his ISIL captors went viral on Tuesday.
The strongly graphic video sent shockwaves across Jordan, which is a member of an ongoing U.S.-led air campaign against the militant group, as well as a fresh wave of global outrage against the ISIL's practices,
Ghannouchi's condemnation comes in response to claims which have surfaced after the video's release arguing that execution by fire was allowed under Islamic law.
"Such aberrant ideas justifying bloodshed have been present since Islam's early stages but they completely contradict with the Quran," Ghannouchi said.
He went on to say that al-Kasasba's execution has driven conflict in the Middle East to "a high level of brutality."
Al-Kasasba was captured by ISIL militants after his fighter plane crashed in the Syrian city of Raqqa last December.
Shortly after the appearance of Tuesday's video, Jordanian authorities executed two Iraqi nationals – Sajida al-Rishawi and Ziyad al-Karbouli – who had been on a death row since 2006 after being convicted of terrorism by a Jordanian court.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 05 Şubat 2015, 10:39