A senior cleric of Egypt’s powerful al - Azhar University has denounced the recent divisive remarks by a Saudi mufti.

Sheikh Mansour Mandour said on Sunday that Saudi cleric Muhammad Al Arefi had expressed his personal views when he urged support for insurgency in Syria.

The Saudi sheikh stirred controversy on Friday by calling for “Jihad” in Syria.

Sheikh Mandour, however, said the Saudi’s cleric’s comments should be judged by the criteria set in the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet’s Sunnah(sayings and teachings of Prophet Mohammad PBUH).

The al - Azhar cleric said Muslims need to be sensitive about attacks on their fellow Muslims, whether Shia or Sunni. He called for a ban on the preaching of radical figures who sow discord among Muslims and pit Islamic nations against each other.

Recently, some radical clerics in Saudi Arabia and Qatar have been escalating their rhetoric against the Syrian government.

Syria has been gripped by unrest since March 2011, and many people, including large numbers of Syrian army and security forces, have been killed.