Following are excerpts from an interview with Sunni scholar Sheik Yousuf Al-Qaradhawi, which aired on the Al-Jazeera Network on February 19, 2012:
Interviewer: Citizenship means equality between all people in a certain country, whether Muslims or non-Muslims. In a country with multiple sectarian and religious denominations, can the head of state be non-Muslim?
Yousuf Al-Qaradhawi: The head of a Muslim state must be a Muslim.
Interviewer: Doesn't this contradict the notion of citizenship?
Yousuf Al-Qaradhawi: No. In principle, all people should be equal, but in a Muslim country, the imam should serve as a role model for Muslims. He leads the prayers. How can you ask a non-Muslim to pray?