[Washington, DC] -- Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz today called for unity and tolerance in order to address the challenges faced by the Muslim world in remarks opening the third extraordinary summit of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.
“Let us bid farewell to the age of division and disintegration in order to usher in a new era of unity and dignity,” King Abdullah said. “I look forward to a united Muslim ummah [community] and good governance that eliminate injustice and oppression for the sake of the comprehensive Muslim development that eradicates destitution and poverty.”
The King denounced extremism and stressed that unity must be achieved through tolerance, not bloodshed. “How painful that the ideology sprouted forth by criminal minds has unleashed wanton evil and corruption on earth,” he said. “Islamic unity will not be achieved by bloodletting as the miscreants – in their misguided waywardness – insist on claiming. Fanaticism and extremism cannot grow on an earth whose soil is embedded in the spirit of tolerance, moderation, and balance.”
The two-day summit has been convened in response to a call made earlier by King Abdullah. Its goals include strengthening Islamic unity to fight common challenges, developing a plan for reforming the OIC, and addressing the issues of disaster relief, poverty and disease.
For a full transcript of King Abdullah’s remarks, please visit www.saudiembassy.net.
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