A prominent Saudi cleric has issued an edict calling for opponents of the kingdom's strict segregation of men and women to be put to death if they refuse to abandon their ideas.Part of this seems to have been prompted by the new Saudi KAUST university that allows men and women to attend classes together, and even allows women to go without the hijab.
Shaikh Abdul-Rahman al-Barrak said in a fatwa the mixing of genders at the workplace or in education "as advocated by modernisers" is prohibited because it allows "sight of what is forbidden, and forbidden talk between men and women."
"All of this leads to whatever ensues," he said in the text of the fatwa published on his website (albarrak.islamlight.net).
"Whoever allows this mixing ... allows forbidden things, and whoever allows them is an infidel and this means defection from Islam ... Either he retracts or he must be killed ... because he disavows and does not observe the Shariah," Barrak said.
"Anyone who accepts that his daughter, sister or wife works with men or attend mixed-gender schooling cares little about his honor and this is a type of pimping," Barrak said.
Egyptian scholars denounced this fatwa.