24 April, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 03/26/2008 14:07
SAUDI ARABIA
Contradictory signals from the Saudis on interreligious dialogue
Favourable attitudes toward welcoming other religions alternate with reactions of entrenchment and dissent. King Abdullah declares openly his commitment to fostering interreligious dialogue, while last week the majority of the members of the consultative council voted against the resolution to respect other faiths.

Riyadh (AsiaNews/Agencies) - King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz says he is open to and in favour of a dialogue among Muslims, Christians, and Jews, intended to establish peaceful coexistence among the members of different religions.

In a declaration issued by the Saudi press agency, the king affirmed: "We have lost sincerity, morals, fidelity and attachment to our religions and to humanity. The disintegration of the family and the rise of atheism in the world are frightening phenomena that all religions must confront and vanquish".

The king spoke during the sixth forum on Culture and the Respect of Religions, organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and concluded on March 24, which counted Japan among the participants, together with representatives of the Muslim world.  King Abdullah added: "I have had an idea which has obsessed me for the past two years as a result of the crisis all humanity is suffering. Such a crisis has marred and caused an imbalance of reason, ethics and humanity. For this reason, I thought" of inviting religious authorities to express their views of what is happening in the world. "We will then start, God willing, to hold meetings with our brothers in all religions".

The sovereign, who discussed his plan with the pope during his visit to the Vatican last November, is evaluating the request advanced by Benedict XVI to allow the construction of churches in the Saudi kingdom.  According to a Vatican spokesman, Fr Federico Lombardi, if the Church were to obtain this permission, it would be an event of historic dimensions.

In spite of the atmosphere of openness in which the forum was held, and the propensity for dialogue demonstrated by the king, last week 77 members of the consultative council voted against the UN resolution for the approval of an international agreement on respect for religion.  According to the members against the measure, the recognition of other religions is a danger to the Muslim community, which would be 'obligated' to respect them and to look helplessly upon the proliferation of places of worship in Muslim countries.

A distinct minority of the 33 members in favour say they are surprised by the outcome of the vote.  They claim that the veto was a provocation in response to the attacks against Islam on the part of Danish, Dutch, and also American cartoonists involved in the publication of caricatures of Mohammed.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
07/18/2008 VATICAN - WYD
Pope: Religious freedom for well-being of society
02/15/2008 PAKISTAN
Bishops: 'no' to the cartoons on Muhammad; it's a mistake to republish them
by Qaiser Felix
11/06/2007 VATICAN – SAUDI ARABIA
Pope and King Abdullah talk about inter-faith dialogue and peace between Israelis and Palestinians
02/20/2006 VATICAN - ISLAM
Pope: respect for religions, but insults do not justify violence
12/18/2006 VATICAN
Pope: peace in Holy Land from shared commitment of Jews, Christians and Muslims

Editor's choices
ITALY - ASIA
Easter, victory over death and impotence
by Bernardo Cervellera
SYRIA
I will miss you Fr Frans, you inspired us all, says Syrian Jesuit
by Tony Homsy*A young priest from the Society of Jesus remembers the life and work of Fr Frans van der Lugt, who was killed in Homs after he refused to abandon residents beleaguered by hunger and war. "He gave and continues to give everything for the Church, Syria, and peace. His story and qualities made him an exceptional missionary and witness to the Gospel." Reprinted courtesy of 'The Jesuit Post'.
FRANCE - IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch on the uncertain future of eastern Christians, a bridge between the West and Islam
by Mar Louis Raphael I SakoThe wars in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan have made things worse for their peoples, especially minorities. As Western policies have been a failure, fundamentalism has grown with the Arab Spring losing out to extremism. Muslim authorities have a role in protecting rights and religious freedom. The presence of Christians in the Middle East is crucial for Muslims.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.