Imam Walid, hailing from Algeria, was honored with a special celebratory reception by the Algerian government for his act of kindness towards a cat that went viral across the globe. During the Taraweeh prayers which he was leading, a cat jumped onto him. Instead of shooing the feline away, he affectionately caressed the cat and continued leading the prayers, which was captured on live broadcast.
This heartwarming act of kindness towards the cat gained immense attention, with the video appearing on leading global media outlets and earning praise from both Muslim and Non-Muslim communities alike. The video made Imam Walid famous overnight.
Dr. Youssaf Belmahdi, the Minister of Religious Affairs in Algeria, hosted the reception and commended Imam Walid for his benevolent act. Social media users also praised Imam Walid for displaying a peaceful and authentic representation of Islam to the world, which could help dispel negative stereotypes associated with the religion.