Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi stressed that it is unacceptable to blame Muslims for terrorism, calling on all Islamic states to work together against the problem.
“Let’s state it clearly, it’s unacceptable…to try to pin terrorism and extremism on our noble religion, which is innocent [of them],” the Egyptian President said in his speech at the meeting by the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Mecca on Friday night.
El-Sisi added that the OIC has a dual mission: to combat Islamophobia, including discrimination and hate speech against Muslims; and to fight terrorism and related extremist speech by those who exploit religion and defame its image and tolerant teaching.
The leaders of the OIC in Mecca (Photo courtesy ofthe Egyptian presidency)
El-Sisi also shed light on terrorism, which he said is the top challenge faced by Muslim nations, and by the world at large.
“Egypt has taken the initiative through calling on all to intensify efforts to eliminate this phenomenon completely, and refuse to connect it with a specific religion, culture, or a particular race,” he said, adding that the issue needs efforts from all Islamic states to activate international and regional mechanisms to fight it.
He said Egypt will not spare any effort to support and boost the OIC as a main umbrella for Islamic work in various fields.
Egypt is keen to participate in initiatives by the organisation in the belief that the size of challenges faced by the Muslim world call for unity and a unified voice, he said.
“Without this unity, how will we be able to combat an unprecedented wave of instability, political and security tensions which sweep our Islamic world and threaten to undermine its leadership and associations and transform it from a cooperation welcoming space to a space of polarisation and rejection?” El-Sisi said.