"You are the scholars of the Islamic world and it is your responsibility to confront the ethnic and sectarian strife in Syria and prevent its spillover into the Arab and Muslim world," the king told senior Muslim clerics attending the 16th General Conference of the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought in Amman Tuesday.
"The bloodshed in Syria should be stopped and the unity of the country and that of the rest of the Arab and Islamic nation should be preserved," The Jordan Times quoted him as saying. "I warn against the danger of manipulating religion for political purposes and sowing the seeds of hateful ethnic and intra-religious sectarian division."
He urged the Sunni and Shiite clerics to find ways to curb the growing sectarian strife, saying, "I am keen to work with you to implement any intiative you suggest to serve our nation, preserve its unity, discourage Muslims from apostatizing each other."
Religious scholars from some 33 countries attended the conference, the newspaper said.