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VISIT OF POPE BENEDICT XVI TO THE UNITED NATIONS

By Dr. Malik S. Khan

A Publication of Motamar at the United Nations by

the International Islamic Council for Da`wa and Relief

 

            Through the good offices of the United Nations Resource Center, Catholic News Bureau Chief Stephanie requested me to express my opinion regarding the significance of the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the United States.  I, Dr. Malik Khan, make the following press release on behalf of the World Council of Muslim Communities (a UN-affiliated organization), World Muslim Congress, Muslim World League, International Islamic Relief Organization of Saudi Arabia, International Islamic Council of Da`wah and Relief, and the world’s Islamic peace movements, Grand Muftis, Islamic eminent scholars, teachers, and imams. and all others.

 

PRESS RELEASE

 

            Muslims believe in the sanctity of all the Holy Scriptures and all the prophets.  Islam is the religion of peace and requires believers to live in harmony with outsiders.  It preaches to "live and let live" and not to impose its ideology on others.  The Holy Quran and other scriptures preach not to commit any vices and to live by the book.


            The historical visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the United States is a dynamic one that can produce a positive image for the Catholic Church.  He can create a fateful environment of peace at the United Nations, enhancing its capacities for the solution of critical world problems.  The Pope has counseled his own community to establish a meaningful life.  We Muslims support him to act according to the Scripture.   We have supported the position of the Catholic Church in the past on such issues as divorce, family planning, abortion, cloning, homosexuality, drug abuse, HIV/AIDS, famine, environment, and global peace.  We will continue to provide this support. The President of World Council of Muslim Communities, Dr. Abdullah bin Omar Nasseef, has been taking celebrated delegations every year to the Vatican and has been conducting dialogues to build bridges of understanding and establish cordial relations for worthy causes on behalf of humanity.  We will continue to work for the benefit of all as revealed by the Almighty. 


            As distortions of the religions, spreading non-truth and promotion of vice have created chaos in the world, it is expected that the Catholic Church shall make due determinations to stem them.  We therefore would like to take this opportunity to bring to the attention of the leader of the Church to prompt the people of goodwill to consciously move forward in the service of mankind in the pertinent disciplines.


            Amongst other things, workable programs should be instituted in such areas as eradication of poverty and hunger, protection of the environment and ecology, uplifting of science and technology, advancement of finance and economics, and promotion of education and knowledge.  Bounties of nature, therefore, ought to be equitably distributed amongst all the nations.


            The Pope's visit to the UN is significant for the Catholic Church to address various questions.  Therefore, his role in solving these world problems is vital.  In this, we will continue to cooperate with him and with the Church to usher in a better future for Planet Earth and mankind.  In essence, they ought to aggressively promote the Millennium Development Goals.  But there are problems beyond these which have to be addressed.  Misinformation on all counts (e.g., industrial innovations, consumers' market, genetics, drugs) is promoting disorder and disillusionment on a gigantic scale.


            One-third of children in broken and single-parent houses are pushed to war, and then on their return, they commit suicide.  The health care system is geared not to the poor, but to the rich.  Poverty eradication requires education, new syllabus, technology geared for better agricultural production, technology geared to give correct information, and pharmaceuticals geared to cheaper treatments.  Every day 35,000 people are dying at the hands of AIDS, which should be adequately controlled.


            The double-headed monster of cloning is on its way to the market, which will destroy marriages, promote unwanted children, and instill chaos, violence, fights, lawsuits, and further spread of diseases of untold dimension.


            Numerous altruistic projects to correct the prevailing difficulties in socio-cultural, financio-economic, religio-spiritual, eco-environmental, and various other fields could be hoisted to protect human well-being.