Hundreds of Saudi clerics 'dismissed'
The Saudi Government has played down media reports that it has embarked on a campaign to reform preaching at mosques following suicide attacks on Western targets in the kingdom earlier this month. A senior government official told the BBC that a decision to withdraw the licences of hundreds of clerics was part of an ongoing process to evaluate services to the public and had nothing to do with the attacks that left more than 30 people dead. Saudi Arabia has come under increasing pressure to dismantle the ideological infrastructure of militant Islam since 11 September 2001 attacks on Washington and New York. The Saudi authorities were accused of turning a blind eye to preachers who encourage hatred of the West and other religions. Full Story