The PJ Tatler

Saudi Fatwa: Pledge Your Allegiance to King Salman Via Social Media

In the first transfer of power in Saudi Arabia since 1995, clerics there have ruled that citizens can fulfill their Islamic duty to pledge allegiance to King Salman via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. In fact, there’s a fatwa to this effect, reports Arab News:

A member of the Council of Senior Scholars said pledging allegiance to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman through social networking websites is allowed, especially since the monarch is the first Saudi king to have a Twitter account.

Sheikh Abdullah Al-Manie, a member of the council, said that any citizen can use social media to pledge allegiance to King Salman, stressing the importance of this gesture in Islam, local media reported.

… “On Twitter, there are more than one million tweets pledging allegiance to King Salman, while there were over a million messages during the past three days on the same site condoling the death of King Abdullah,” Saeed Jadallah, a social network expert told Arab News.

…“Furthermore, many Saudis found pledging allegiance to King Salman through their accounts on Twitter and others social websites easier than going to their respective governorates,” he said.

Saudis comprise the largest number of Twitter users in the Arab world. They take it so seriously that in 2012 a cleric issued a fatwa against buying Twitter followers, calling the practice “dishonest and mendacious.”

King Salman has 1.73 million followers, but predictably he follows no one.