Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies opens

ABU DHABI, 11th December 2017 (WAM) – The fourth conference of the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies began this morning in Abu Dhabi, under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

Held at the St. Regis Hotel, the three-day conference brings together with over 700 Arab and Muslim scholars, as well as participants from other faiths to discuss ways of promoting a modern vision of Islam and of drawing attention to the contribution made by the religion to global peace and harmony.

It will also seek to examine the root causes of mutual concerns between Muslims themselves and in regards to wider society.

Talking earlier to media, the Forum’s Secretary-General, Dr. Mohammed Matar Al Ka’abi, who is also the Chairman of the General Authority for Islamic Affairs and Endowments, said that this year’s forum will focus on the topic ‘Global Peace and the Fear of Islam: Countering the Spread of Extremism’.

"With the prevalence of Islamophobia in Western societies, which undermines confidence among Muslim minorities, encourages the hate speech, and increases accusations that suggest that 'Islam is against peace', there is a need to counter these allegations with scientific proof and highlighting Islam’s vision of global peace," Dr. Al Ka’abi said.

The first theme, discussed during this morning’s session, focused on the international and regional climate for global peace, seeking to identify factors which could potentially pose a threat to regional or global peace, regardless of whether these are related to political, economic or sociological influences or can be attributed to ideological, cultural and doctrinal views. Amongst the latter, issues singled out for discussion included ideologies that suggest that ‘a clash of civilisations’ is inevitable or those that take an apocalyptic view of the world. Racialist tendencies and religious extremism, regardless of its origin, were also included amongst the topics for discussion, within a framework that noted that such views can commence with the marginalisation and exclusion of ethnic and religious minorities, leading on to religious and ethnic cleansing and international terrorism.

The event was opened with remarks from Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah, President of the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies, followed by Dr. Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al Issa, Secretary of the Muslim World League.

The other topics due for discussion over the next three days include: The Fear of Islam: Causes and Contexts, with two themes, ‘Fear from Islam from a Western Perspective’ and ‘Fear from Islam from the Muslim Minorities Perspective’. Three workshops will discuss ‘Islamophobia and New Islamophobia’; ’Islamophobia and new Populism’, and ‘Islamophobia, Media and Means of Communication’.

‘Islam and the World – An Islamic Vision of Global Peace’, which will focus on the vision of the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies, and the forum’s contributions to global peace.

‘Islam and The World – Ways to Rapprochement and Solidarity’.

WAM/PH

WAM/Nour Salman/MOHD AAMIR