Muslim World League chief deplores religious extremism

Muslim World League (MWL) Secretary-General Dr. Mohammed bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa speaks in Rimini, Italy, on Tuesday. (SPA)
Updated 29 August 2018
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Muslim World League chief deplores religious extremism

  • Al-Issa pointed out that evil spread hatred, wars and injustice, classified people based on racism, exclusion and clash of civilizations, establishing the theory that diversity means conflict, not peace and harmony
  • Al-Issa warned against some groups that have reached intellectual deterioration, based on religious convictions or extremist philosophies

JEDDAH: The secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL), Dr. Mohammed bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa, has declared at one of the world’s biggest gatherings that struggle should be replaced by dialogue and understanding based on mutual respect.
He stressed that his message was for 1.8 billion Muslims who are committed to a religion that calls for the values of peace and promotes the building of bridges of peace and harmony in all issues. The most important of these, he said, are the rights of minorities, women and men, migration causes, national integration and trafficking in human beings as well as problems of poverty and ignorance.

This came in a speech delivered by Al-Issa in Rimini, Italy, on behalf of the Islamic peoples in the activities of the 39th edition of the Meeting for Friendship Among Peoples. The theme was “The forces that move history are the same that make man happy” and political and religious leaders participated in the presence of more than 5,000 people from around the world.

The one-week gathering featured several seminars and open discussion sessions aimed at bridging the gap between the peoples of the world and emphasizing the importance of coexistence and understanding among nations and cultures.

This was the first time that the concepts of Islamic thought, culture and civilization were presented in this huge international gathering.

Al-Issa affirmed that the will of the Creator has decreed that people should be diverse in their colors, languages, religions, creeds, ideas and cultures.

He added that Allah has honored everyone and has not excluded anyone. “Only pure hearts filled with love and goodness can enjoy Allah’s mercy and justice and see in this diversity human richness that promotes dialogue, coexistence, cooperation and peace,” said Al-Issa.

He also pointed out that evil spread hatred, wars and injustice, classified people based on racism, exclusion and clash of civilizations, establishing the theory that diversity means conflict, not peace and harmony. What counts, he said, is the dignity of one’s religious or ethnic group.

Al-Issa warned against some groups that have reached intellectual deterioration, based on religious convictions or extremist philosophies.

“These groups form isolated cases in every religion, at any time. There is no religion whose origin is extremist, and in every religion there are extremists. The theories of some philosophies are intellectual hallucination rather than a philosophical logic,” added the MWL secretary-general.

He stressed that the MWL speaks in the name of the Islamic peoples, hence it has felt the importance of clarifying the truth of the Islamic religion which has loved, coexisted, engaged and cooperated with everybody after extremism has tried to harm it.

Al-Issa stressed that any religion incompatible with life cannot survive for more than 1,400 years, which is the age of Islam to this day.

“Islam is still among the most widely spread religions in terms of geography and growth. Muslims today count about one billion and 800 million people,” he said.

Al-Issa stressed that it is neither logical nor fair to reduce this religion, which has hundreds of millions of followers, to an extremist category that does not exceed, according to the MWL’s statistics, one in 200,000 Muslims who represent moderate Islam.


Major boost for Al-Jouf as Saudi king set to announce new city

King Salman arrived in Al-Jouf on Tuesday. (SPA)
Updated 21 November 2018
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Major boost for Al-Jouf as Saudi king set to announce new city

  • The king will launch Waad Al-Shamaal, a new city aimed at boosting the country’s mining infrastructure

JEDDAH: Projects worth several billion riyals are to be unveiled by Saudi Arabia’s king this week as he continues his tour of the country’s regions.
King Salman arrived in the province of Al-Jouf on Tuesday night where he will announce the construction of a new city, bolstering the local economy and creating thousands of jobs in Saudi Arabia’s most northern region.
On Thursday, the king will launch Waad Al-Shamaal, a new city aimed at boosting the country’s mining infrastructure, the Saudi Press Agency reported. 
He will lay the foundation stone for the first phase of the SR85 billion ($22 billion) city in Toriaf province — worth SR55 billion —  and is also set to inaugurate the projects and facilities of the second phase — worth SR30 billion.
In the past two months the king has visited a number of major cities, announcing projects and initiatives to develop the Kingdom inline with Vision 2030 — a broad strategic plan to diversify the economy and end dependence on oil revenues.
Before arriving in Al-Jouf, King Salman visited Tabuk, where several projects worth more than SR11 billion were launched.
He also met the team heading Amaala, the ultra-luxurious tourist destination that was unveiled in September and dubbed the “Riviera of the Middle East,” and was briefed on plans for the new attraction.
King Salman praised Amaala’s objectives to contribute to promoting economic diversification, creating investment opportunities for the private sector, and developing the tourism sector in Saudi Arabia while preserving the cultural and environmental heritage.
Meanwhile, the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) announced yet another major project in western Saudi Arabia.
Wadi Al-Disah Development Project, which is expected to become one of the Kingdom’s most environmentally diverse tourist attractions, adds to a number of already launched ventures on western coastal regions.
PIF will establish a company to develop Wadi Al-Disah in accordance with international best practices regarding environmental conservation and sustainable development.
In addition to this week’s tour, the king has so far visited Madinah, Qassim and Hail.