KUALA LUMPUR: Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi yesterday called for the collaboration of the Sunnah Wal Jamaah in the Southeast Asia region to protect the ummah from deviant doctrines which tend to disunite them.
The Deputy Prime Minister said this was important to check the birth and spread of new terrorist groups.
“Our obligation is also to clarify the great deviation in the ideas, methods and transcendental extremism in order to protect the Islamic societies in the Asean countries from their dangers, and to depend on Islam by rejecting all forms of accusation, extremism, violence and suspicion directed at Islam by the media and others,” he said.
Ahmad Zahid was closing the two-day Khayr Ummah Conference 2017 (KUC2017) here yesterday.
Among those present were Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Islamic Affairs Sheikh Saleh bin Abdul-Aziz bin Muhammad Al-Sheikh; Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom; Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican; Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Noor Rashid Ibrahim; JASA director-general Datuk Dr Mohd Fuad Zarkashi and Islamic preacher Dr Zakir Naik.
Ahmad Zahid said the biggest challenge in this area was to overcome the perception of many with regard to Manhaj Ahlu as Sunnah by providing them with genuine knowledge of Islam and to educate people to understand clearly the best and finest of the ummah.
He said that in facing the challenges confronting Muslim countries globally, the perception and international askance towards Islam and Muslims must first be tackled before the issue of ‘Islamophobia’ can be addressed.
“In this, we cannot move alone. We must overcome this in agreement. The image of Islam must be uplifted again and human tragedies related to wrong perception of Islam must be corrected.
“We need to clarify the reality of the Islamic religion, its moderate teaching and its true path. The virtue of this nation, the justice of Islam and its moderation in the biography of Prophet Muhammad and his companions should be highlighted,” he said.
Citing the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, the war in Syria and Yemen, the destruction of Iraq and Afghanistan and the predicament of the Palestinians, Ahmad Zahid said a common approach in combating these was crucially needed and must be justified.
“We cannot just be the witnesses of their sufferings. In Asean, the plight of the Rohingya Muslims of Myanmar’s Rakhine State also demands fast and concrete solution before it goes out of hand.
“Never, we are never against the Myanmar government. They are a friend in Asean but they too must show strong determination to resolve the issue,” he said. — Bernama