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MWL hosts historic gathering of Iraqi Islamic scholars in Makkah
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 05 - 08 - 2021

MAKKAH — The Muslim World League (MWL) hosted a historic forum that brought together all the influential Iraqi religious leaders and Islamic scholars in the vicinity of the Grand Mosque in Makkah.
This was for the first time the Iraqi scholars met in front of a table for unity talks and that was in response to an invitation from MWL Secretary-General and Chairman of the Association of Islamic Scholars Sheikh Muhammad Al-Issa.
Reiterating their unified position to close their ranks and join together in rejecting the rhetoric of sectarianism, hatred, and clash, the forum endorsed the establishment of an authority for cultural communication between religions and religious sects as well as to activate the Makkah Document.
In a final statement adopted at the end of the forum, the delegates thanked and appreciated the distinguished efforts of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, and their support for initiatives to promote peaceful coexistence and civilized dialogue, as well as to confront extremism and violence worldwide in general and in Iraq in particular. The participants also expressed their thanks for the historic initiative of MWL chief Dr. Al-Issa.
The statement underscored the need to activate the Makkah Document, as well as to open channels of constructive dialogue and positive communication between scholars to address emerging issues and renewed crises while reiterating that this forum would be a nucleus for adopting these channels. The participants also called for the dissemination of the common values brought by Islamic Shariah to engage in the nation-building process by spreading the spirit of tolerance, peaceful coexistence, mutual respect and moderation, apart from rejecting extremism.
The scholars also stressed that the priority in religious and media discourse is to emphasize the word of monotheism and unity, preserving the identity of the homeland, besides rejecting terrorism and condemning violence in all its forms, in addition to paying attention to the promotion of peace to contribute to building a righteous society based on coexistence and societal peace. The participants also called for the rationalization of religious fatwas in order to achieve the purposes of legislation in a way that preserves Islamic and human commonalities.
The statement recommended the establishment of an authority for cultural communication between the religious sects and schools of thought that make up Islamic societies. It also mooted the establishment of a joint coordinating committee that brings together the Iraqi religious authorities and the Muslim World League so as to follow up the initiatives resulting from the forum and activate any upcoming initiatives that aimed to achieve its set goals.
In his inaugural speech, Dr. Al-Issa reiterated that there are strong bonds of fraternal understanding, coexistence, cooperation and integration based on sincere love between Sunnis and Shiites. They also noted that Sunnis and Shiites embrace the characteristics of various schools of thought in the circle of their religion except for one thing -the abhorrent sectarianism rejected by everyone. He urged the scholars to be wary of this disaster.
At the concluding session, the Iraqi religious leaders honored Sheikh Al-Issa for his initiative to organize the forum and his efforts to bring sects and religious authorities closer, as well as to consolidate the values of brotherhood and renounce hatred.

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