KUALA LUMPUR: The Kuala Lumpur Summit 2019 is not a platform to discuss the differences in the interpretation of Islam as a religion but to gather and find ways to develop and become strong Muslim nations.
Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said, only strong Muslim nations could help the “ummah” to grow and develop to meet the current global challenges.
“The Muslim nations were once recognised for their advanced civilisation, abled to spread Islam to the world and well versed in the field of science, engineering, and manufacturing of goods.
“Unfortunately now Muslim countries are no more being respected, no longer the source of human resources and knowledge,” said Dr. Mahathir who is also the Chairman of KL Summit in his speech at the opening ceremony of the KL Summit 2019 held here today.
The KL Summit 2019 was attended by more than 450 delegates from 56 countries. The Summit among others is to identify and form resolutions to help Muslim countries to grow and move out of the domestic crisis.
Dr. Mahathir said, few Muslim countries are gathered here today (Thursday Dec.19) and they are working on some tangible programmes and if it works well then it will be shared with others.
Dr. Mahathir also pointed out the differences in the interpretation of “jihad” amongst Muslim nations. Jihad to a certain extent has created Islamophobia among non-Muslims in the world.
“Some frustrated Muslims even indiscriminate violent acts to frighten people and then proclaim that it is Islamic jihad. Islamophobia will continue even though the Muslims said that it was done by other Muslim sects and it was not Islamic.
“The victims of the “jihad” do not care about different sects as it is not relevant,” said Dr.Mahathir.
The prime minister also mentioned that Muslim countries should adhere to the teachings of Islam, work hard and seek new knowledge. These values have been embraced by the Muslim leaders in the 15th century that had enabled them to spread Islam across the world.
Dr. Mahathir also said that a Muslim leader should administer the government via good governance, high tolerance and give justice to all citizens as these are Islamic teachings.
Meanwhile, President of Iran, Dr. Hassan Rouhani had expressed his concern about the culture and changes in identity among the young generation who have adopted western lifestyles as a result of mainstreaming of news.
“To combat the global challenges, Muslim countries should form a network to increase the Muslim space in the economic sphere,” said Hassan in his speech at the opening ceremony.
Hassan also mentioned that countries like Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, and Afghanistan have encountered political, economic, terrorism, radical groups’ threats and foreign interventions and these led to continuous crisis and conflicts.
The President also touched on Iran’s experiences on economic sanctions imposed by the US but managed to survive due to their strong science and technology background.
“Science and technology is the key to power and development. Science is the king and knowledge is power,” said Hassan.
He also said Muslim countries should not depend on foreign financial aids, instead possess national Islamic capacity that will turn to domestic power and strength for economic growth.
The President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan emphasized that about 39 percent of the global oil is produced in Muslim countries but the people are living in extreme poverty.
Erdogan added, in general, the Muslim countries provide only 4% for health expenses and 3.7% for education purposes in their national budget as a result of regional conflicts.
He also pointed out that one out of three arms sold globally are purchased by the middle-east (Muslim countries)
“The Muslim countries cannot be losing all the way and should realize that any crisis will set the opportunity to foreign intervention and as such should remain united and fight all kinds of disorder.
“We should compete in the field of finance, technology and set strategies on trade while focusing on health and tourism perspectives,” said Erdogan. –Malaysia World News