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Secretariat For Dialogues Between Islamic Scholars And Leaders To Be Set Up

By Monday December 22nd, 2008 No Comments

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 22 (Bernama) – A special secretariat which can be the platform for dialogues between the ulamas (Islamic scholars) and umara’ (leaders) on current issues involving Muslims will be set up soon.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said such a secretariat was needed to enhance relations and cooperation between the two groups as their thinking and views were important in resolving issues involving Muslims.

“Basically, it should begin with mutual respect for each other’s role and the outcome of their discussions should be brought to the fore as guidance and reference in solving the issues,” he said.

Najib who was met by reporters after attending the “Ulama and Umara’ Gathering and Dialogue” at the Federal Territory Mosque, here, today said it had been proposed that the Islamic Consultative Council under the Islamic Development Department Malaysia (Jakim) act as the permanent secretariat.

He said in safeguarding the image of Islamic scholars and leaders in the eyes of society, the two groups should be sensitive to the aspirations, hopes and concerns of the people, besides being able to understand the trends and thinking of young people as well as issues involving them.

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NAJIB-SECRETARIAT 2 KUALA LUMPUR

Najib also proposed that Islamic institutions in the country study how Prophet Muhammmad practised the “zimmi” (free non-Muslims living under Muslim rule) concept in managing racial conflicts and ensuring religious tolerance during his time.

“We should use this concept as the basis for our religous tolerance so that others could see Islam as a harmonious religion.

“Let us together think of ways and take action to rebuild harmony in the country through wisdom by applying the formula that had been practised by the Prophet.

“At the same time, the Prophet was also firm with elements that tried to disturb the prevailing peace and harmony. The Prophet’s attitude towards the “harbi” group or aggressors and hypocrites had been firm and clear,” he said.

Under the “zimmi” concept, Muslims are required to protect the weak, including from among the non-Muslims, as long as they are not against Islam, while the “harbi” group refers to those who are blatantly against Islam.

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Source : Bernama

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