New York [United States], Mar.2 (ANI): Infamous Pakistani cleric Maulana Mohammad Abdul Aziz, 57, who was once the head cleric of Islamabad's oldest mosque, the Lal Masjid, continues to be a radical voice heard across Pakistan.
Recently, in a telephonic interview given to Fox News from his Islamabad compound --Jamia Hafsa, Aziz said, "We don't see Pakistan anymore as our destination, we will come out as a force to establish Islamic rule over the entire world."
The Jamia Hafsa is a seminary school that boasts around 1500 girls and 2000 boys.
Predicting a global change within the next decade, Aziz said, "We want Sharia within our country and I, along with my pupils, will go to any extent to implement Sharia - even at the cost of waging a war against the country-coerced government."
Aziz has acquired an envious reputation for his inflammatory sermons, anti-American ideology, for sparking global jihadist movements and supporting designated terrorist groups. He has even named his school's library the "Martyr Usama Bin Laden Library" in honor of the former Al Qaeda leader and 9/11 financier.
Of Osama bin Laden, Aziz says, "He did jihad, to implement Sharia around the world. So, for us he is an Islamist warrior. We title our library after his name with audacity."
Aziz's links with violent movements are well documented.
It was under his guidance at the Red Mosque in July 2007 that scores of his baton-brandishing male and female students took to the streets outside.
He has had a key role in closing down video stores considered immoral, abducting Chinese women from a massage parlour he deemed to be a "brothel". His supporters have threatened to throw acid in the face of female university students nearby, and he even has had a government building torched.
Aziz says that he has taught his students to stand against a corrupt system that has been immobilising the country.
He condemns Pakistan for inheriting what he calls the British system, described as solely non-believers."
Pakistan has particularly in the wake of the 2014 Peshawar school slaughter purported to squash terror-inspiring voices like Aziz. And many Pakistanis have expressed their staunch opposition to the extremist preacher.
However, Fox News quotes Farrukh Khan Pitafi, an Islamabad-based columnist and television journalist, as saying, "The past few years there has been a cultural shift in the country and Aziz has struggled to find space on the national media. But it remains a work in progress. It is safe to assume that he is down, but not out."
Aziz's influence remains a cause for concern on an international scale. (ANI)