Muslim World League secretary-general honored for interfaith work

Secretary General of the Muslim World League Mohammad Abdulkarim al-Issa gives a speech during a visit to the Nozyk Synagogue on January 24, 2020 in Warsaw. (AFP)
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Updated 13 June 2020

Muslim World League secretary-general honored for interfaith work

  • US officials, American Jewish leaders award Dr. Mohammed Al-Issa for combatting anti-Semitism
  • He vowed that the MWL would “keep on until there is no more antisemitism and racism”

NEW YORK: Former Saudi Minister of Justice Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa was awarded the first ever Combat Anti-Semitism Award for his work in the interfaith community and his fight against anti-Semitism and religious intolerance.

The virtual ceremony on June 9 was co-hosted by the Combat Anti-Semitism movement and the American Sephardi Federation. Senior US diplomats, UN officials and leaders of the American Jewish community all hailed the interfaith work of Al-Issa, secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL).

Al-Issa has been the MWL secretary-general since 2016 and has forged several alliances with Jewish, Christian and other religious committees across the world.

He recently led a high-level delegation to Auschwitz in January of this year and announced several historic initiatives to counter extremism, guarantee religious freedom and improve human welfare, spreading the virtues of inter-religious understanding. He has been described by the US Department of State and other major international agencies as one of the foremost proponents of moderate Islam in the world today.

US Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Elan Carr thanked Al-Issa for his “remarkable vision and his commitment to turning over a new chapter and building a new future for the sake of not only Jewish and Christian children, but for the sake of all the children of the world.”

Those sentiments were echoed by US Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback, who called Al-Issa a “leader of the future.” Brownback said he would continue working with Al-Issa to “overcome the forces of hatred and evil.”

In his speech, Al-Issa spoke of the importance of Jewish, Muslim and other religious groups to work together to combat hatred in all its forms. He stressed that adherents of all faiths face a common enemy in the extremists who wish to drive their communities apart.

“Since taking over the Muslim World League, it has been my mission to fight the forces of hatred and violence,” Al-Issa said. “We have carefully implemented a holistic, multi-pronged approach that has included tolerance-building programs in education around the world, and counter-extremism monitoring and counteraction grounded in the true, moderate doctrine of Islam. And we have dramatically increased outreach to all of Allah’s children — Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, and others. For our battle against intolerance and division is the same.”

Al-Issa said partnerships are more important than ever to defeat common enemies, from terrorism to global pandemics.

“Islam prophesizes peace between all peoples. Only through respect and tolerance for others can this be achieved. The alternative is ceaseless, violent conflict,” Al-Issa said. “Our faith is committed to tolerance, peaceful co-existence, and respect for the dignity of all mankind. We share a responsibility to confront all those who would promote division. Armed with the truth, we will fight the scourge of Islamophobia, anti-Semitism and all hatred.”


Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

Updated 23 October 2020

Global organizations commend Saudi Arabia’s role in e-learning

JEDDAH: Six international organizations have completed two studies on e-learning in the Kingdom and praised its efforts in providing a rapid response, multiple options and continuous improvement during the coronavirus pandemic.
The studies involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.
The center said that the global organizations completed two comprehensive studies on the experience of public and higher education in Saudi Arabia during the pandemic, with the aim of documenting and studying the reality of the experience and coming up with initiatives to develop e-learning practices in accordance with current global practices and standards.
The studies were conducted with the participation of students, faculty members, teachers, parents and school leaders.
The number of participants in the public education study reached 318,000, while the number of participants in the higher education study reached 24,000.
The first study was prepared by the Online Learning Consortium (OLC), with the participation of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), Quality Matters (QM), the UNESCO Institute of Information Technologies in Education (IITE), the National Research Center for Distance Education and Technological Advancements (DETA) in the US.
The second study was prepared by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) with the cooperation of the Harvard Graduate School
of Education.
In the studies, reference comparisons were made with more than 193 countries. The two studies showed the Kingdom’s distinction in the diversity of options, including, for example, electronic content and satellite channels available for e-learning in public education.

NUMBER

342k

The studies on e-learning involved the participation of 342,000 respondents and were conducted under the supervision of the Kingdom’s National Center for e-Learning.

The percentage of countries that succeeded in providing these at the national level was only 38 percent.
The study conducted by the OECD and the Harvard Graduate School of Education included a comparison of the Kingdom’s response to education during the COVID-19 pandemic with 37 member states.
The results showed the Kingdom’s progress in 13 out of 16 indicators on the average of
these countries.
The study also revealed that teachers received significant support to overcome obstacles to e-learning.
The study of public education indicated that there was a clear strategy for the Ministry of Education to reopen schools in the Kingdom and address any issues.
OLC hailed the efforts of the Saudi Ministry of Education in dealing with the crisis by providing a variety of options for e-learning, and the quick response to the pandemic and immediate shift to remote instruction.
The two studies recommended 71 proposed development initiatives for public education and 78 proposed development initiatives for higher education.
The National Center for e-Learning is working in coordination with the Ministry of Education to present the initiatives and begin their implementation.
The center announced that the organizations that conducted the studies would publish their results and complete the second phase at the end of the current semester.