FM Shahid: Islamophobia stems from inability understand Islam’s core principles

Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid speaks at the 49th Council of Foreign Ministers meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on March 17, 2023. (Photo/Twitter)

Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid has remarked that hate speech against Islam and Islamophobia stems from people’s inability to understand the core principles of Islam.

Speaking at the 49th Council of Foreign Ministers meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) held in Nouakchott, Mauritania on Friday – he underscored the Muslim Ummah was facing profound challenges at the moment.

On this note, he detailed that Muslims around the world are living through difficult times as they tackle challenges from rising islamophobia to oppression, from post-COVID recovery to climate change, and from conflict – old and new.

Nevertheless, he described Friday’s meeting as a testament to the spirit to work together and stand united against these growing challenges.

“Our unity, our solidarity, and our collective voice brings hope to many who are under threat or hardships around world,” he said.

Minister Shahid explained the true message of Islam is clean and pure, while it entailed peaceful coexistence and unity and rejects hate, fear and prejudice. He added that the true message of Islam can be spread through unity.

“Our wisdom and strategic yet calm approaches to extremism defines us and make us different from the perpetrators,” he also said.

He suggested the positive impact Islamic faith could have on climate change, one of the most pertinent global issues at present.

“Our faith teaches us to treat the living world with respect. To protect our world – and everything within. Our faith teaches us to waste less, to conserve water and natural resources. To practice sustainability. We need to heed these lessons,” he said.

Speaking further, Minister Shahid said that the IOC meeting should serve as a platform which resonates with the voice of the people of Palestine.

“We reiterate our call for the establishment of a sovereign and independent State of Palestine, based on the pre-1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital,” he stressed.

Minister Shahid concluded his remarks by stating a united stand can help the Islamic Ummah thrive and overcome the challenges faced.