King Abdullah’s remarks at the International Islamic Conference for Dialogue

June 4, 2008

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz opening address at the International Islamic Conference for Dialogue, Makkah, June 4, 2008

In the Name of Allah, most gracious, most merciful. Thanks to Allah the Almighty, and Peace and Blessings upon the seal of the Prophets, prayer and peace be upon his family and companions.

Brothers, Muslim scholars and thinkers, may Allah's peace, mercy and blessings be upon you all.

From the land of Revelation and land of Message, I welcome you with warmest greetings, beseeching Almighty Allah to give us the unrelenting determination, a power not afflicted by weakness and makes us from those whom Allah said about them:

“Nor can Goodness and Evil be equal. Repel (Evil) with what is better: then will he between whom and thee was hatred become as it were thy friend and intimate!” (41: 34)

Dear Brothers:

You gathered today to say to the world around us, with confidence which Allah bestowed upon us. We are the voice of justice and human moral values, and we are the voice of rational and just coexistence and dialogue, the voice of wisdom and admonition, and argumentation with the best way possible. As Allah says:

“Invite (all) to the way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious.” (16:125)

God willing we will do so.

Dear Brothers:

How great this nation is, how difficult the challenges it faces in a time where its enemies – extremists from its sons and others – join forces to change its fair approach. They are gathered with blatant aggressiveness to target the tolerance, justice and noble purposes of Islam.

For this reason, this invitation from your brother is to counter challenges of rigidity, ignorance, narrow-mindedness, and to make the world accommodate the concepts and the prospects of the kind message of Islam without enmity and antagonism.

“O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things)." (49:13)

Dear Brothers:

Islam will remain fortified by the will of Allah Almighty and then with the conscience of Muslim scholars, thinkers and his followers.

Islam's greatness founded the concepts of dialogue, and sets its milestones which are reflected in Allah saying: “Wert thou severe or harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about thee.” (3: 159)

Our hearts are full – praise to Allah – by faith, tolerance and love, which Allah, the Creator, ordered us to obtain.

Yes, dear brother, the way to the others is through shared values advocated by the divine messages, which were revealed by Allah the Almighty for the benefit of humanity to preserve their dignity and promote the ethical values and dealings which certainly are not in conformity with deception.

These values reject treason, alienate crime, combat terrorism, and despise lying. They lay the bases for good morals, honesty, truthfulness, justice, and enhance the concepts of family values and its cohesion and ethics, which are slowly diminishing at present and disintegrating ties, and where human beings are distancing themselves from their Lord and the teachings of their religion.

Dear Brothers:

From the vicinity of the Holy Mosque of Makkah, we begin with the will of Allah. From there, we will move in our dialogue with the others in confidence derived from our faith in Allah and then from knowledge sought from our tolerant religion. We will argue in ways that are best, what we agree upon we accept it in our hearts and what we disagree about we refer to the Sublime saying: “To you be your way, and to me mine.” (109:6)

Before I conclude my speech, I'm pleased to extend my thanks to the Muslim World League and its personnel and to every one who contributed to the success of this conference.

In the name of Allah, we start, and in Allah is our trust.

Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon you all.