Lahore, Oct 15 : A conference of Muslim clerics from across Pakistan has declared that only the state had the authority to call for jihad, and that individuals or groups were not authorised to do that.
The body of clerics later issued a fatwa in this regard.
The fatwa, issued unanimously by the Muttahida Ulema Council (MUC), during the conference at the Jamia Naeemia comes in the wake of devastating suicide bomb attacks in the country that have claimed hundreds of lives.
Declaring suicide bombings as "un-Islamic", the fatwa said that the government should stop military operations in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and conduct negotiations with the people there to end militancy.
The clerics also said former president Pervez Musharraf's pacts with the US should be made public. Calling upon the federal government to support Iran, it said that it was a better ally than the US.
They said that Iran's security was directly linked to Pakistan's sovereignty, therefore Iran's standoff with the US over Tehran's pursuit of nuclear technology should be taken up at the Organisation of Islamic Conference platform.
They decided that a team of religious scholars would visit Bajaur and Swat to ascertain the situation in the areas. The moot was attended by clerics from the Jamaat Ahl-e-Sunnah, Ahl-e-Tashee, Ahl-e-Hadith, Jamaat-e-Islami, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam, banned Sipah-e-Sahaba and Deobandi and Barelvi schools of thought, Maulana Sarfaraz Naeemi told a press conference.