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H.E. MR. AHMED BIN ABDULLAH AL-MAHMOUD-Opening speech
SPEECH BY: H.E. MR. AHMED BIN ABDULLAH AL-MAHMOUD, MINISTER OF THE STATE FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND MEMBER OF THE COUNCIL OF MINISTERS DELIVERED AT THE DOHA FOURTH INTERFAITH DIALOGUE CONFERENCE DOHA-STATE OF QATAR 25 APRIL, 2006 IN THE NAME OF GOD, MOST GRACIOUS, MOST MERCIFUL AND PEACE BE UPON ALL THE PROPHETS AND APOSTLES OF GOD Their Excellencies, Distinguished audience, Assalamu Alaikom Wa Rahmatu Allah Wa Barakatu,,, I welcome you to the city of Doha in the name of the State of Qatar, represented in its Emir, Government and people, and it is my pleasure to declare open-in the name of God and by His grace and blesses- the Doha Fourth Inter-faith Dialogue Conference, which I beseech almighty Allah to render it a connecting link between a series of conferences through which we can realize the lofty goal of bringing people of the faith and specialists together in order to explore avenues of mutual understanding and prospects for cooperation so that peace and amicable affection will prevail throughout the globe Distinguished audience, The primary basis from which emanate all the three sublime messages, Islam, Christianity and Judaism, centers, as you are well- aware, on believing in the one and only Allah, who created the universe and made man a vicar of Allah on Earth in order to inhabit and cultivate it and establish and adopt, to that matter, the norms of good deed and conduct with a view to administering justice and promulgating noble traits of character, Following such a line of reasoning, we are all entrusted with well-defined duties and joint responsibilities in order to establish an all-inclusive relationship, based on reciprocal respect and refined and proactive interaction, in a manner which reinforces the positive aspects of the mutual relations and limit the effect of the negative ones, thus paving the way towards the achievement of the best result for humanity, under the canopy of which we all live together as nations and peoples. We, in the State of Qatar, under the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar, may Allah protect him, staunchly believe in such concepts and values. We, thus, regard the interfaith dialogue as a concept which- in the first place- promotes disambiguation and clear stating of views rather than argumentation, and stimulates reaching out to the other and getting to know one another. We view it as a pragmatic and realistic dialogue that seeks to propagate coexistence amongst people with dignity, justice, security and peace. We envisage it to be a dialogue which augments the prospects of convergence, meeting and conferring with one another, through which we will be enabled to transcend the boundaries of discrimination among members of mankind and manage to chalk the common path of life its various domains, on a solid buttress of the precepts shared by all religions. Distinguished audience, The insult leveled at prophets, apostles and angles, which fueled the sentiments of believers and followers of the three divine religions and prejudiced their beliefs Ė including inter alia- theatrical plays, drawing the movies- such insults are by all means unacceptable and unjustifiable. Such phenomena are manifestations of discrimination. They are inconsistent with the principles of coexistence and even contradict the very concepts of justice and open-mindedness. Their Excellencies, Distinguished guests, The program Agenda of your conference covers a host of very crucial issues. It is my own conviction that the discussions will enrich the various axes of the themes under discussion with luminous visions and ideas. I am duty-bound, however, to call upon the participants, particularly those who attended the Third Conference last year, to explore the optimal means for following up the implementation of the recommendations issued by that conference as well as the outcome of this one in order to meet the objectives behind such meetings and dialogues. In conclusion, it is my genuine hope that your conference will be crowned with success and will assist the endeavor to realize the welfare and godliness of all mankind. May Allah guide your steps towards all that which wins you Godís good pleasure. Wa Assalamu Alaikom Wa Rahmatu Allah Wa Barakatu.

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