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>> 170 scholars to attend interfaith dialogue >>        H.E. Ahmed bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud opened Tuesday morning the 7th Doha Conference on Interfaith Dialogue, which kicked off this year under the slogan" Human Solidarity".       
H.E. Ahmed bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud opened Tuesday morning the 7th Doha Conference on Interfaith Dialogue, which kicked off this year under the slogan

Doha, October 20 - Minister of State for Foreign Affairs H.E. Ahmed bin Abdullah Al Mahmoud opened Tuesday morning the 7th Doha Conference on Interfaith Dialogue, which kicked off this year under the slogan" Human Solidarity". Addressing the opening session, H.E. the Minister said the conference has became a notable event that practically represents Qatar, under the wise leadership of H.H. the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani, as a believer in the significance of solidarity among religions, which certainly help maintain world peace and security. '''' Believing in god, worshiping him and constructing earth is the key to the human pleasure and peace'''', H.E. the Minister said. The conference will basically focus on the solidarity among religions required to face the current humanity issues, H.E. al Mahmoud noted.

H.E. Al Mahmoud referred to the current situation in world communities, including wars and destruction, poverty, disease and ignorance, starvation, natural disasters, the widening gab between the rich and the poor, the absence of social justice, deterioration of human rights and basic freedoms, all together require, more than any time before, an effective action to be taken by religions, in order to save human communities. H.E. the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs also referred to the pervious six conferences held in Doha, which he said have greatly helped thawing the ice and removing the psychological barriers standing between the followers of divine religions, barriers that never exited before, but recently resulted because of oppression, aggression and non- administration of justice. "I hope that this conference will successfully establish pillars of the desired solidarity in a bid to ensure a decent and happy for human beings, regardless of their religions, ethnic origins, language, culture or race,'''' H.E. the Minister noted. "The religions participating in this conference today represent almost 60 per cent of the world''s population. These religions further share a divine origin and they all return to Abraham. Thus, their responsibilities before human conscience are enormous and that renders their solidarity and joint action all the more a religious as well as a moral duty." H.E. Al Mahmoud added.

Speaking at the conference, Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) Prof. Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu highlighted the importance of the Doha 7th Interfaith Dialogue as it covers several key issues on both Islamic and international levels. Prof. Ihsanoglu hailed the State of Qatar and expressed appreciation for its great attention to major dialogue issues and its sponsorship of several activities meant to solve conflicts and crises. He noted to the Islamic civilization as being very distinguished, because it focused and valued the human being, saying that Islam made it clear that human solidarity and integration is a basic way of bringing about a decent life for peoples. Prof. Ihsanoglu referred to the OIC as a leading institution that dealt with dialogue as a mean of understanding, tolerance and ending conflicts among world nations. He noted that the OIC was the first to add the topic of the interfaith dialogue to the UN agenda in 1998, which later adopted the issue and marked 2001 as the year of interfaith dialogue across the world.

Meanwhile, Dr. Ibrahim bin Saleh al Nuaimi, Chairman of the board of directors of the Doha International Centre for Interfaith Dialogue, said the humanity is suffering today from natural disasters, wars, poverty and starvation, noting that up to 60 per cent of the human beings lack the basic needs of a decent life, including drinking water, education, proper housing and health services. More than 800 million people are starving, 240 million of them exist only in Africa, Dr. al Nuaimi said, adding that such pain suffered across the world needs a moral organization to be established in order to enhance dialogue, depending on common bases. The Doha international Centre for Interfaith Dialogue works to establish a unified vision towards well upraising and good acts, as God ordered us in the Torah, the Bible and the Holy Quran, Dr. al Nuaimi noted. Concluding, Dr. al Nuaimi expressed pleasure over the participation of secondary school students, who will represent their vision through discussing the role of human solidarity in handling the economic crisis, expressing sadness over the absence of students from Jerusalem, who he said couldn''t participate in this year''s conference for the difficult situation in the Occupied Jerusalem.

For his part, President of the Council of French Jewish Institutions Bernard Kanovitch praised the conference, which deals with such a significant subject of concern to humanity and the elite participants representing the divine religions. Kanovitch stressed that all people were created on the same bases that require us to come together, saying that we all have only one god and what the messengers of god have said, came in the three divine books, this is what all religions share. The Archbishop and Secretary General, Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, Vatican, Pier Luigi Celata, also thanked Qatar for hosting such an important event, noting that people should integrate, co-exist and establish political, economic, cultural and social ties, a matter he insisted will spread an atmosphere of equality and tolerance among world nations. "The Holy Quran talked a lot about the human solidarity,'''' said Member of the International Advisory Board and chairperson of the session, Aisha Yousuf Al-Mannai, who also stressed on the importance of the co-existence and the acceptance of others through dialogue, to reveal the values and principles needed to face those who she said call for un controlled freedom. The two-day conference, will discuss major topics related to human solidarity and integration from a religious view in order to face the current world''s troubled status.

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