Islamic Solidarity Summit opens in Makkah

August 15, 2012

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz opened the Extraordinary Islamic Solidarity Summit in Makkah yesterday evening in the presence of presidents, prime ministers, kings, and heads of delegations from a number of Islamic countries. The gathering is scheduled to last two days.

In his inaugural speech, King Abdullah welcomed the leaders and called upon them to tackle the problems of the Muslim world in a unified fashion. “The Islamic nation is currently living in a state of sedition and disunity that has led to bloodshed of its people in this holy month in many parts of our Islamic world, ignoring God’s verse that ‘Persecution is worse than slaughter,’” he stated. “The ideal solution to all that I have mentioned will not take place except through solidarity, tolerance and moderation and also through standing side by side to face whoever tries to harm our religion and unity.” King Abdullah insisted, “If we observed justice, then we could conquer injustice, if we practiced moderation, then we conquer extremism and if we reject dispersion, then we could keep our unity, strength and determination, God willing.”

To work towards to these goals, King Abdullah stated, “I suggest hereby the establishment of a center for dialogue among Islamic sects to come to common terms, with the city of Riyadh as its headquarters and, upon recommendation by the Secretariat General and the Ministerial Council, its members be selected from within the Islamic Summit Conference.”

During his own remarks, Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Ihsan Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu announced that the OIC and the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs had signed a Headquarters Agreement. King Abdullah, he said, has issued a directive to build a permanent OIC headquarters, as a gift from the King to the Islamic world and the OIC. The Secretary General thanked the Saudi monarch for holding this important summit, saying, “In the land of revelation and the most sacred place in the world, the leaders of the Islamic world came here in response to your invitation for an Extraordinary Islamic Solidarity Summit. More than a billion and half Muslims around the world prayed to God Almighty to unite their leaders to overcome the crises, hoping that this summit will be a means to overcome the risks and dangers facing the Muslim world.”

After the conclusion of the opening session, a closed-door meeting was held.

The Saudi delegation to the Extraordinary Islamic Solidarity Summit includes Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz; Prince Miteb bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud; Makkah Governor Prince Khalid Al-Faisal bin Abdulaziz; Advisor to the King Prince Abdul-Ilah bin Abdulaziz; Interior Minister Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz; Special Envoy of the King Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz; Chief of General Intelligence Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz; and Deputy Foreign Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz.