Top Islamic nation, Saudi Arabia has agreed to build churches for her Christian citizens – To this end, an agreement was signed by the secretary general of the Muslim World League and president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue – The Muslim country’s new found openness with the non-Muslim world is said to be as a result of her desire to reduce dependency on oil resources which is its major economic driver Saudi Arabia has reportedly entered into a joint agreement with the Vatican to build churches for Christians living in the officially Muslim nation, Breitbart reports. Reports says the agreement was signed by Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdel Karim Al-Issa, the secretary general of the Muslim World League and Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue in the Vatican.
Breitbart, quoting Egypt Independent newspaper reports that Saudi Arabia’s newfound openness to and socio-cultural cooperation with the non-Muslim world was as a result of her desire to reduce dependency on oil resources which is its major economic driver. According to the agreement, a coordinating joint committee will be established comprising two representatives for both sides to organize future meetings. It was also reported that the meeting of the committee will be held once every and will be alternated between Rome and a city chosen by the Islamic World League. Reports also says Saudi Arabia is the only country in the region without a single Christian church. The country was also said to have embraced Islamic Wahhabism, which bans all forms of non-Muslim religious activities. Tauran, in an interview with the Vatican News newspaper was quoted to have said that he was pleased by what he described as ‘the beginning of the rapprochement’. “It is a sign that the Saudi authorities are now ready to give a new image to the country,” he added.