Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat—Saudi King Abdullah has agreed to hold a major summit to “achieve partnership and move away from partisanship and division” in mid-2015, director of the Islamic University in Medina Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Sanad told Asharq Al-Awsat.
The move comes after Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, issued a historic Eid speech last week warning against the threat of terrorism and calling on Muslim scholars to stand up and confront extremist groups and ideologies that seek to hijack Islam. The summit will aim to confront religious extremism and promote national unity.
Sanad reiterated the Saudi monarch’s statements, warning that some “enemies” of Islam are seeking to divide the Muslim community.
He confirmed that the Islamic University in Medina has already set up special committees to prepare for the summit. The committees are in the process of preparing the summit’s itinerary and main focus, which will include promoting correct Islamic Shari’a practices. The main aim of the conference will be to promote “partnership” and confront “division,” the Islamic University director said. The summit will also discuss the role of state institutes in preserving unity as well as put forward solutions to issues surrounding separation and division.
Dr. Mohammed Youssef Afifi, Dean of the Islamic University, told Asharq Al-Awsat that members of the Council of Senior Scholars and Shura Council will participate in the summit. In addition, attendees will participate in a number of workshops and conferences to discuss a number of sensitive social issues.
Afifi added that representatives of 20 Arab states will also attend the conference, as well as representatives of institutions such as Egypt’s Al-Azhar University. He highlighted the importance of this conference during the present time, saying that the situation can no longer tolerate silence.