Almaeena defends Muslim Indians in viral interview
JEDDAH (Al-Bilad English): “Muslims are part and parcel of India; reconfiguration of history is wrong,” emphasized Saudi political analyst and Jeddah-based businessman Khaled Almaeena in an interview with India’s Arfa Khanum on a recent episode of The Wire.
Since its broadcast on Thursday, the interview has gone viral over social media platforms; with Indian Muslims, non-Muslims, and even non-Indians and general supporters of religious tolerance sharing links to the episode.
Speaking in Urdu, the long-time chief editor of Arab News told Khanum that the spread of hatred and mass discrimination in India is hurting the country’s image, as well as its relationship with the GCC.
“The attacks on Muslims in India are having a negative impact on GCC-Indian relations. What is happening today is a total rejection of Gandhian principles and Nehruvian values. The world will not tolerate it anymore,” exclaimed Almaeena.
“Islamophobia has hurt India’s interests, Prime Minister Modi must speak up for India’s Muslims,” he added.
On Saudi Arabia’s recently agreed-upon trade deals with India, Almaeena praised the historic ties between the gulf nations and India.
“Gulf countries share very good bilateral relationships with India. India has pre-independence trade relations with Arab nations as traders and businessmen. We must respect our mutual ties at all times.”
The former Editor-in-Chief of Saudi Gazette reiterated the need for tolerance and harmony, citing the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman’s call for universal peace.
“We in the Arab world want Prime Minister Modi, recipient of the highest civilian awards in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, to come forward and simply say ‘enough is enough’ to stop the culture of islamophobia.”