Makkah summit calls for Muslim unity
King Abdullah Suggests Centre For Inter-Sectarian Dialogue
Makkah, Aug 15: Saudi Arabian ruler and custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah has called upon the Muslim Ummah to stand united in the face of myriad challenges it faces.
In his inaugural speech at the two-day extraordinary Islamic Solidarity Summit here, King Abdullah said the Muslim Ummah was going through a “period of seditions and divisions.” He said there was bloodshed in many parts of the Muslim World during the holy month of Ramadan.
The solution to these conflicts is unity, tolerance, solidarity and moderation, the King said. “We have to unite against any attempts to divide us. We can defeat injustice only when we are just. We can counter extremism only when we are moderate,” the King said.
“Sedition is worse than killing,” he said at the historic summit of the 57 Muslim countries. “We hope that Almighty Allah helps us find the causes that have made our Ummah weaker and divided, an issue which has reflected negatively on the Ummah,” the King said.
King Abdullah called upon the leaders to rise to the occasion and shoulder their responsibilities. “We should all support what is right,” he said.
The King also proposed setting up a dialogue center for Islamic schools of thought. The center would be based in Riyadh and its members drawn from the OIC states.
The King’s role of enhancing cooperation and creating harmony between all Arab and Islamic countries stems from the Kingdom’s ethical and religious obligation toward the Ummah.
As leaders gathered in the holy city to brainstorm on ways and means to bolster the unity of the Ummah and safeguard its interests, in an exemplary display of homogeneity, millions of worshipers in the Grand Mosque here and the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah beseeched Almighty Allah for His forgiveness and His mercy in the Night of Power in the blessed month of Ramadan.
Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) which is hosting the summit, said the Muslim World was going through a difficult period.
“It cannot continue with its current approach. We need to hold on to the Islamic values of moderation and tolerance,” he said, pointing out that the most important issues before the summit were Palestine, Syria, Mali and the treatment of Rohingya Muslims of Myanmar.
Addressing the summit meeting, Macky Sall, President of Senegal, dwelt on the situation in Syria and the atrocities on the Rohingya Muslims of Myanmar. “We are facing continuous refusal by the Syrian government. We want resolutions asking the Syrian regime to stop killing the innocent,” he said.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying that the world today was in a very “sensitive situation.”
“Different groups are at work and the enemies are actively pursuing their aims and a great deal of energy is being spent by Islamic governments and groups on arguing with and confronting each other,” he said.
Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi stressed on the importance of cohesion between Islamic countries, especially at this stage, and the importance of the role of the summit to address the issues faced by the Islamic nation, in addition to noting that Egypt host the coming Islamic summit early next year.
Earlier, King Abdullah received the Muslim leaders at his palace, including Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Egyptian President Muhammad Mursi and Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani.
In a gesture that would be interpreted as a sign of the summit’s success, King Abdullah made Ahmadinejad to sit right beside him. Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad was on the king’s other side.
There was optimism and a sense of delight among the hosts, Saudis, as well as their foreign guests.
Lastupdate on : Wed, 15 Aug 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 15 Aug 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 16 Aug 2012 00:00:00 IST
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