ABU DHABI - Saudi Arabia's highest religious figure praised a leading Sunni Muslim scholar on Thursday for his condemnation of Hezbollah following its intervention in Syria.
Influential Qatar-based Sunni cleric Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi last week called for jihad (holy war) against Assad and called Iranian-backed Hezbollah - which means party of God - "the party of Satan".
He said he had been wrong to have praised Hezbollah in the past when he had sought to bring Sunnis and Shi'ites closer together.
Saudi Arabia's al-Sheikh, the highest religious authority in the birthplace of Islam, said Qaradawi's stance was in line with Sunni orthodoxy.
"Part of his statement was his support and reference to the stance of some of the (Saudi) kingdom's great scholars, which has been clear towards this hateful sectarian party since its establishment," he said in a statement carried by the Saudi press agency.
He called on scholars and politicians to act to stop Hezbollah's "aggression."