Abu Dhabi (UNA-OIC) � The First International Muslim Communities Congress (IMCC) kicked off in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, on Tuesday, under the theme of Conference of Muslim Communities, with the participation of more than 600 religious scholars and researchers as well as official, cultural and political figures representing over 150 countries.
In his inaugural address to the two-day event, Minister of Tolerance Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan commended the initiative of establishing the World Council of Muslim Communities in Abu Dhabi - a move, which he said, establishes Abu Dhabi as the world's capital city for peace and tolerance.
He expressed hope that the Congress would play an efficient role in creating innovative ideas to confront the besetting challenges and risks. "We do hope that the new council would reflect the real conditions of Muslims who now live all over the world and represent the majority of the population in around 50 countries and the minority in others."
"All human societies are now characterized with diversity and cultural pluralism," he added, noting that addressing social and cultural diversity and pluralism has become one of the key challenges of this age.
"The failure to address this cultural and ethnic diversity and pluralism results in dire consequences, including forced migration and spread of subversive ideas that are being imposed on some peoples around the globe."
Successful societies are those where peace, security, stability and loyalty to homeland prevail, Sheikh Nahyan said, expressing hope that the World Council of Muslim Communities would conduct the necessary research needed to overcome the challenges faced by Muslim communities in different parts of the world, including poverty, literacy and oppression.
"We wish the World Council of Muslim Communities would dedicate more interest in the role of a youth who are easily affected by and vulnerable to new technologies," he said.
The minister also expressed the hope that the Congress would serve as an effective tool in building national and international alliances to ensure a decent life for all communities.
"Holding this forum in Abu Dhabi is a true testament to the UAE's ability to support its Islamic nation. We are a strong nation that boasts harmony between all segments of society and all the people living in its soil. We are determined to continue our endeavors to ensure the higher good of al all world peoples," he added.
The conference seeks to highlight the role of the UAE in cementing the culture of peace and people-to-peace dialogue for the purpose of the construction of civilization while networking the efforts being made by different states and organizations to frame the Islamic presence outside the Muslim world and ultimately achieve peace and security.
Panel sessions, during the two-day event, shed light on the initiatives made to encourage Muslims in non-Muslim societies to engage in building their respective societies and participate in their civilian and civilizational renaissance. The congress will come to an end today with the issuance of a draft World Charter for Muslim Communities.
Source: International Islamic News Agency