The International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS), the body of Islamic scholars headed by Youssef Qaradawi, has posted an article which alludes to tension between Saudi Arabia and the IUMS over the establishment of the IUMS. According to the article:
…we can understand Al-Qaradawi’™s words: ‘We held our first meeting in London, 2004, because we could not find any close Islamic country in our region that would welcome us; for people were afraid of the establishment of the Union’. This apprehension added another challenge to the Union; namely, how to manage its relationship with political systems between the two extremes of enmity and loyalty. This is because all scholarly assemblies are usually attached to official systems. Hence, we see that the establishment of the international assembly of Muslim scholars that was organized by the Muslim World League in Makkah (April, 2004) was an indicative step on the part of Saudi Arabia, because this assembly appeared to be equivalent to the IUMS that was independent from official systems. Therefore, Saudi Arabia viewed it as a threat to its symbolic Islamic centrality.
Whatever tensions may have existed or still exist, Qaradawi was able to travel to Saudi Arabia in December 2006 in order to participate in the second conference of the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Endowments, Da`wah and Guidance, held in Mecca.