Source: YouTube

Jeddah-based cleric Assim al-Hakeem never fails to surprise us with his fatwas (religious edicts), but this time his views on the digital currency, bitcoin, really take the cake. 

During his program Ask Zaad, al-Hakeem voiced concern over the use of bitcoin, claiming it is prohibited under Islamic law. 

The reason? 

"We know that bitcoins remain anonymous when you deal with it… which means that it's an open gate for money laundering, drug money and haram money," al-Hakeem said, according to Al Araby.

Al-Hakeem also points out that since bitcoin is a modern currency, it has not been discussed by scholars in the past. 

"Bitcoin is something that is recent and new and there are a lot of serious concerns when it comes to dealing with it ... whether it's from the origin or from the aspect of sustainability and security," al-Hakeem said

He goes on to question bitcoin's dramatic increase in value overnight. 

"As of today, one bitcoin that was [worth] 0.1 cents is now equivalent to $11,000 plus. This is ridiculous. This is not something physical you can touch," he adds. 

His statements come after bitcoin's value spiked, with its trade value reaching $12,450 as of Wednesday morning. 

Bitcoin is forbidden under Islamic law because it is "ambiguous and provides anonymity to criminals"

"It is all bogus, it is all a hoax."

"Muslims should not get involved in such dubious transactions simply to make a quick buck, to make a quick profit. This is not an Islamic concept," al-Hakeem said.

Al-Hakeem is not alone in his views

In November, Turkey's top religious body claimed that the cryptocurrency is "not compatible with Islam."

"Buying and selling virtual currencies is not compatible with religion at this time because of the fact that their valuation is open to speculation, they can be easily used in illegal activities like money laundering and they are not under the state’s audit and surveillance," said Diyanet, the Directorate of Religious Affairs said, according to EuroNews.

Even Saudi Prince Al Waleed bin Talal thinks bitcoin is a "fraud"

In an interview with CNBC in October, the Saudi business mogul criticized the cryptocurrency's lack of regulation and warned it was "Enron in the making" - a reference to the 2001 financial scandal in which investors lost billions of dollars.

"It just doesn't make sense. This thing is not regulated, it's not under control, it's not under the supervision of any central bank. I just don't believe in this bitcoin thing," Prince Alwaleed said.

"I think it's just going to implode one day. I think this is Enron in the making," he added. 

American gas firm Enron went bankrupt in 2001 after executives hid billions of dollars in debt from company shareholders.