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  March - April 2006

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New wave of Islamophobia, Palestine, Kashmir, Iraq, Syria and Iran situation discussed

Motamar asks world leadership to condemn blasphemous cartoons, calls for religious harmony, common code of ethics

TMW Report

Islamabad: Motamar Al-Alam Al-Islami (World Muslim Congress) has urged upon the world leadership to condemn the sacrilegious act of publication of blasphemous cartoons by a number of western papers and evolve a common code of ethics against blasphemy of any prophet in the interest of religious harmony and peaceful co-existence.

A resolution adopted at the Executive Council Meeting of the Motamar held at Islamabad on March 10-11, 2006 said the publication of the sacrilegious cartoons by the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten had hurt the feelings of Muslim all over the world. The Muslims hold all prophets of God in the highest esteem and believe that blasphemy against any of the prophets is reprehensible. Hence such publications under the pretext of freedom of the press cannot be justified.

The meeting also considered the situation arising out of the new wave of Islamophobia, the latest developments in Palestine, the situations regarding Kashmir, Iraq, Syria and Iran besides other pressing matters affecting the Muslims everywhere in the world.

The Executive Council Meeting was attended by the following:

1. Mr. Abdullah Bin Omar Nasseef, (Saudi Arabia) President, World Muslim Congress.

2. Mr. Mohamed Haniffa Mohamed, (Sri Lanka) Vice President, WMC.

3. Field Marshal Abdel Rahman Al-Dahab (Sudan) Vice President, WMC.

4. Raja Muhammad Zafarul Haq, (Pakistan) Secretary General, WMC.

5. Dr. Sayed Kamil Sharif (Jordan)

6. Sheikh Ahmed Lemu, (Nigeria)

7. Mr. Shafiq Abdullah, (Australia)

8. Mr. Roble Usman Yousaf, (Somalia)

9. Sheikh Mohamed Rukara, (Brundi)

10. Malik S. Khan, (USA)

11. Mir Nawaz Khan Marwat, (Pakistan)

The following attended the Council meeting as observers:

i) Mr. Qutubuddin Aziz

ii) Dr. Basharat Jazbi

iii) Mr. Justice Mohammad Khurshid

iv) Raja Mohammad Ali, MPA.

v) Malik Shuja ur Rahman

vi) Mr. Abdul Qayyum Rathore

vii) Dr. Tariq Fazal Chaudhary

Following was the agenda of the meeting:

i) New wave of Islamophobia, its implications.

ii) Latest developments in the Middle East (Palestine).

iii) New pressures on Muslim States.

iv) Situations regarding Kashmir, Iraq, Syria and Iran.

v) Issue of Muslim minorities.

vi) Future programme of action.

vii) Any other issue with permission of the Chair.

At the start of the meeting, Qari Syed Bazurg Shah recited verses from the Holy Qur’an. After that, the Secretary General Raja Muhammad Zafarul Haq requested the President Mr. Abdullah Omar Nasseef, for his opening remarks in which he welcomed the delegates and drew their attention to various issues facing the Muslim world and the responsibility of World Muslim Congress to these issues and the manner in which we can perform our duties in the best interests of the Ummah.

The Secretary General then explained the agenda, the programme of the two days meeting and the absence of some of the members of the Council; giving the reasons of their inability to attend the meeting. Then the Agenda items were taken up one by one.

The first item i.e. New wave of Islamophobia, its implications, was discussed.

It was observed that relationship between adherents of different religions should be based on mutual respect and cooperation and all efforts should be made to avoid expressions which in any way injure the feelings of others especially about the Holy Prophets and the Revealed Books.

The participants observed recent crude attempts at blasphemy by a Danish newspaper, had saddened and angered the Muslims throughout the world. These condemnable attempts by one newspaper, reproduced by several others, is not only uncivilized and unethical behavior, but it is also a crime against humanity. It has seriously jeopardized the relationship between Muslim community and some of the Western Governments which have taken a stance of supporting this serious misconduct which aggravated the crime.

The World Muslim Congress decided to go for an intellectual approach to meet the new wave of Islamophobia and its fall out. Peace, justice and ethical behaviour, shall always remain the objectives of Muslim community against all provocative actions. The action of boycott of goods from blasphemer countries is totally justified, the Council observed.

The meeting said that dialogue is an expression of confidence and should continue with improved mechanism. Humanity has always benefited from constructive dialogue.

A resolution was proposed by Mr. Nawaz Khan Marwat on this issue, which was adopted with some amendments.

Text of the Resolution

“The publication of sacrilegious sketches of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in a Danish Newspaper “JYLLANDS POSTEN” and reprint by certain Newspapers of Europe has hurt the feelings of about one and a half billion Muslims, all over the world. The Muslims love the Prophet more than themselves, their parents, children and wealth. They cannot tolerate the blasphemy of the Holy Prophets at any cost. The Muslims hold all Prophets of God in the highest esteem and believe that blasphemy against any of the Prophets is reprehensible. Hence we believe that such publications under the pretext of freedom of press can not be justified. It is the collective responsibility of the entire World Leadership to condemn this sacrilegious act, foster understanding and bridge the gap created in the wake of sacrilegious cartoons. It is the duty of all religious leaders of different faiths to promote and project religious harmony, mutual respect and condemn acts of blasphemy in all its forms. They should evolve a common code of ethics in the larger interest of peaceful co-existence. It should be noted that sacrilegious acts cause great blow to reconciliation and co-existence and result in clash of civilizations. In order to stop the recurrence of such acts of blasphemy, the UNO should pass enactment and make it a penal offence”.
Developments in Middle East

On the issue of latest developments in the Middle East, particularly Palestine, the Council declared that all Palestinians including HAMAS are an integral part of Muslim Ummah and the recent fair elections in Palestine, have given them a valid mandate to establish their Government and their representatives to negotiate on their behalf for the achievement of their national objectives. The reservations being expressed about the legitimacy of HAMAS is a product of ingrained hostility and refusal to enter into meaningful dialogue and negotiations to implement resolutions of the United Nations by Israel and some of its backers. This negative attitude would promote further violence and loss of precious lives and would keep the whole region destabilized. It was observed during discussions that Israeli demands from HAMAS now, were all conceded by late President Yasser Arafat but still he was given nothing in return and he passed away as a disappointed leader. “We also appeal to all powers and international players to adopt a balanced approach towards this issue and resolve the same on the basis of justice and fairness. We appeal to Muslim Ummah to continue giving unflinching support to the people of Palestine and their representatives, in their heroic struggle, “the WMC Executive Council Meeting said.


The meeting also discussed in detail the pressures being brought against Iran on the nuclear issue. “We feel that a consistent policy be applied with regard to non-proliferation by not making exceptions in this respect. We believe that any further aggression against another Muslim country would be disastrous and would destabilize not only this region but the entire humanity. Negotiations and dialogue on this issue, is the only answer.”


The Council expressed is solidarity with the people of Iraq and demanded full territorial integrity of the State of Iraq and that the occupation forces should announce their withdrawal from Iraq and avoid continuing bloodshed. We appreciate the efforts of the Iraqi political and religious leadership in avoiding a civil war on the basis of sectarian and ethnic divide. World Muslim Congress would make efforts to help them in this connection,” the Council said.


The Executive Council reiterated “the principled stand of Motamar on the Kashmir issue. Progress cannot be made towards the resolution of this issue without implementing the resolutions of the United Nations. The people of Kashmir are sole arbiters of their fate and future and they should be provided an opportunity to take democratic decision. It is also the responsibility of the international community to stop human rights violations and continued killings of innocent people of the State of Jammu and Kashmir,” the Council meeting said.


The Council also discussed the issue of Darfur (Sudan) and decided to send a message of solidarity to the Government and the people of Sudan. Any attempt to undermine the territorial integrity of Sudan, should be resisted unitedly by the Muslim Ummah. The task of maintenance of peace in that region should be left to the troops contributed by the African Union and none else,” it said.

Establishment of Human Rights Commission

The Council also decided to establish a Human Rights Commission for the promotion of universal human rights, educate masses and make concerted efforts to prevent their violations.

Muslim minorities

The Executive Council observed that 40 percent of the total world Muslim population lives as minorities in different parts of the world under non-Muslim Governments. In some of the countries, the Muslim minorities are enjoying full constitutional rights and economic and cultural development, but unfortunately there are some countries where they are facing serious problems. It has been decided to send letters of appreciation to the Governments of Canada, Australia and South Africa for fair treatment of Muslim minorities in the countries. The Council appreciated the fair expressions of H.H. Prince Charles about Islam and Muslims, regarding their contribution to the world civilization and culture.

The Council also decided to appeal to Muslim Ummah to observe the month of Rabi-ul-Awal, marking the birth of the Holy Prophet (PBUH), as mercy to the entire world, by educating different sections of the society by making programmes for the dissemination of information about the consummate example of the highest moral conduct, approach and practice of the Last of the Prophets.

The Council also decided to improve net-working amongst different Muslim organizations for better results.