THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, witnessed on Saturday night (July 19th) the announcement of establishing the first independent international body that aims at promoting peace in Muslim societies under the name of “Muslim Council of Elders.” The move follows the recommendations of the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies, held here in March this year.
The announcement was made at a press conference on the eve of a meeting gathered a group of scholars and thinkers from Islamic world headed by Grand Imam Sheikh Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb, Sheikh of Al-Azhar, and the Scholar Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah, Chairman of the Forum.
According to the founding statement, members of the Council are expected to redouble their efforts to reunite the Islamic world and tackle extremist ideologies that are contrary to human values, and tolerant principles of Islam. They will work collectively to develop a roadmap with the aim to extinguish the fires that sweep across the region, and address the evils of sectarianism and violence plaguing the Muslim world over the decades.
The statement announced also the establishment of the Council as the first institutional entity that gathers the Elders of the Islamic nation, which was a result of the recommendations of the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies, and a joint initiative of the Grand Imam Sheikh Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb, Sheikh of Al-Azhar, and the Scholar Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah, Chairman of the Forum.
The founders of the Council stressed – in the statement – on the need to comply with the provisions of Islamic teachings that calls for peace, rooting the concept of peace, and Establishing the method of peace in fiqh (jurisprudence), values, concepts, rules and culture, making the path of peace contentedly a choice for the youth of the Islamic nation.
They also placed great emphasis on the impartiality of any subjective factors make the members of the Council a party to any political, religious or ethnic conflict.
The aim of the Council, which is based in Abu Dhabi, is to unify the efforts to reunite the Islamic nation and extinguishing fires that swept the reigon through facing extremist ideologies that are contrary to human values and principles of Islam.
Grand Imam of Al-Sheikh Dr. Ahmed Al-Tayeb, Sheikh of Al-Azhar said that Islam which created this Muslim nation, made its history, and became an integral part of its culture, is a religion of peace to the whole world, provides security and peace among its people, and for all mankind.
“Muslim nation’s scholars and wise men must take their full responsibilities in this dangerous historic juncture which our nation going through now and save their nation in this miserable battle between its people by deep thinking and careful planning with patience and perseverance, making extra effort to spread peace to achieve it and implanting it in our Islamic world through our moderate Islamic method that harmonizes understanding of the text and the jurisprudence of reality away from fueling people by false images,” his eminence added.
in this historic juncture dangerous through which our nation now and realize their nation in this arena miserable among their children, and so own reflections and thoughtful reflection and careful planning, patience and perseverance, and make the effort to spread peace and to achieve and dedication in our Islamic world, but, according to the average correct approach, and the jurisprudence of Rashid, harmonizes understanding of the text and the jurisprudence of reality, and with the distance from the pathways excitement and enthusiasm agitation and false,” His eminence added.
Scholar Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah said in this regard that the state of fragmentation and strife in the nation does not allow us to be a partner in the international decision-making, pointing out that the opportunities of development exist when peace exists, however what wars offer is only death and destruction.
He also stressed the importance of the separation between Islamic discourse and Islam, he explained that the Islamic discourse is not Islam, it is the understanding of Islam.
He called all parties to renounce hate speech and sectarianism which recently has taken extremist nature that increased the state of division and fragmentation in the nation.
The new body includes elite of wise scholars, scientists, intellectuals and experts from the Islamic world, including Grand Imam Sheikh Dr. Ahmed al-Tayeb, Sheikh of Al-Azhar, the Scholar Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah, Chairman of the Forum.
The forum, which was held in Abu Dhabi from 9th-10th March, 2014, aimed to promote peace in the Muslim communities. The event was a global platform that brought together more than 250 scientists and Muslim thinkers from around the world.
The participants recommended the establishment of an Islamic Council for the promotion of peace in Muslim communities. It is set to feature a group of wise Muslim scholars and experts to contribute to extinguishing the fires in the region.
They called for a number of procedures and steps that would contribute to consolidation of a culture of peace in Muslim communities.