A “suspicious” new UAE opposition group now calls itself Emirates Freedom Movement (its Twitter ID is @Emirate_Freedom). In Arabic the group are: حركة احرار الامارات . It is not clear how large it is, since locals will be wary (actually fearful) to follow it on the Internet. Most likely it is a small group for now since Wahhabi Salafism has not been popular in the UAE.
It has just issued its manifesto, which is NOT fully very freedom loving or reforming. On the contrary it is extreme Wahhabi Salafi. Some good early goals listed by this group include: release all “reformist” political prisoners, justice, distribution of oil wealth equally…..
Then the true character of this “opposition” group shows up as they seek to repress and ban “others” with the following demands:
- Expulsion of all “enemies of Islam” from UAE. Probably meaning here expelling non-Muslims (Christians, Hindus, Budhists, etc) who are a large majority of UAE residents. The term “enemies of Islam” here seems to mean “enemies of Salafism”. It goes beyond that to take an extreme Wahhabi meaning with their next demand:
- End all Safawi (Safavi) practices in UAE. Safawi is a favorite Wahhabi Salafi derogatory term for Shi’as (and it is often used by some Muslim Brotherhood types as well). Even the clownish Chief of Dubai Police (Dhahi Khalfan) has used this term in his personal tweets in the past. This means that like all Salafis, and like many Wahhabi liberals from the Persian-American Gulf to North Africa, they are demanding that Shi’a religion practices be banned.
P.S.: Could this group be a plant by the rulers to confuse matters and taint the ‘opposition’? It could, it could.