Muslim scholars from Pakistan have signed a historic agreement condemning sectarianism and vowing to remove it as a cause of conflict in the violence-stricken country.
Meeting in the Turkish seaside resort of Bodrum the scholars, who represent all of Pakistan’s major Islamic sects and tendencies, agreed to come together to tackle religious intolerance in the interests of Muslim unity.
Brought together by the UJN, the signatories include Sahibzada Muhammad Hamid Raza of the Sunni Ittehad Council, Allama Ibtisam Elahi Zaheer of Jamiat Ahle Hadith and Allama Syed Niaz Hussain Shah of Hoza Ilmia Jamia Al Muntazar.
The 11-point UJN Pakistan Unity Declaration commits the signatories and the UJN to sign statements in the upcoming Islamic month of Muharram denouncing the killing of fellow human beings on the basis of colour, creed, ethnicity or religion as haram. The statements will also declare excommunication or takfir against fellow Muslims and abusing the Prophet Muhammad’s family and companions to against the Shariah.
Also party to the accord were Allama Mohammad Sadiq Qureshi (Minhaj ul Quran International), Maulana Syed Ali Murtaza Zaidi (Jamay Imamia), Liaqat Baloch, MP (Jamaat-e-Islami) and Muhammad Sarwat Ejaz Qadri (Pakistan Sunni Tahreek).
The accord is based on Charter 3:103, initiated by the Islamic Human Rights Commission in 1997 and since adopted by scores of Muslim organisations, which calls for Muslims to be united in accordance with the 103rd verse of the third chapter of the Holy Quran.
It also addresses the challenging problem of madrasas in Pakistan, believed to be a breeding ground of intolerance, recommending that syllabuses and curriculums address the need for respect, harmony and peace between all members of Pakistani society.
Chair of IHRC, and UJN co-ordinator, Massoud Shadjareh said:
“The signing of the declaration is a determined step out of the quagmire of murder and fear that has come to characterise the landscape in Pakistan. The situation of sectarian killings and intimidation that has worsened year on year has been dealt a blow by the unity shown today.”
Director of Citizens International and UJN Co-ordinator Mohideen Abdul Kader said:
“The dream for many that the inception of Pakistan once was had become a nightmare. Today’s events bring back hope that one day Pakistan can put the internecine strife of the current era behind it.”
The declaration is attached to this press release.
Photos of the signing ceremony can be found here.
A video of the of signing can be accessed here.
Please contact the IHRC Press Officer on firstname.lastname@example.org or +447958522196.
Notes to Editors
S.M. Mohamed Idris Massoud Shadjareh
UJN Co-Ordinator UJN Co-Ordinator
For more information please contact either of the UJN Secretariats below:
Islamic Human Rights Commission
Tel : (+44) 7958 522196
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