March 13, 2015
Last night a group of Muslim leaders joined the Pacifica Institute to provide insight into the perception that Muslim voices are slow to speak out against terror attacks perpetrated by Muslims in the name of Islam.
Watch excerpts from the event here or listen to the entire event here
Department of Justice, US Attorney Laura Duffy kicked off the event by explaining why dialogue was important. “The need for our community (s) to come together to combat this problem has never been more apparent than it is today…the DoJ is deeply engaged in this vital effort across our country.”
Muslim leaders Ahmet Kuru, Imam Taha Hassane, Jihad Turk all Sayed Mahdi Qazwini addressed various root causes that lead young people to join violent terror groups like the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). All cited social media propaganda as an effective tool terror groups use to lure large swaths of people to their cause. All of the leaders at the conference denounced terrorism perpetrated by ISIS.
The forum was organized by the Pacifica Institute a Turkish organization that works within communities to provide faith-base assistance to those in need.
“The Pacifica Institute organizes a lot of events condemning violence and terrorist attacks committed in the name religion, particularly Islam,” Pacifica Institute spokesperson Mesut Inci said. The group hopes forums can spark a nationwide discussion on brutal terrorist acts perpetrated by extremists, like ISIS, in the name of Islam.
“We just want to speak up and stand against violence by inviting speakers with Muslim backgrounds to speak out. We also believe that many Muslim people feel and think same way, therefore, we just wanted to create a platform to encourage Muslim leaders to express this important message to the community. The main goal of organizing this event is to denounce all kind of extremism and examine some events to see if there are any contributing factors of the religion.”
The renewed Muslim dialogue comes on the heels of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo terror attack that killed 12 journalists in Paris. A rare comment from French Prime Minister Manuel Valls left political correctness at the door and said; “It is a war against terrorism, against jihadism, against radical Islam, against everything that is aimed at breaking fraternity, freedom, solidarity.”
The French government also held a giant unity rally in Paris. More than 40 world leaders attended, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Turkey’s Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The most prominent Muslim leader that attended was Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Perhaps the most newsworthy leader to attend the Paris unity rally was Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi who’s harsh words to Egypt’s Muslim clerics caught the attention of western nations. The authoritarian leader implored moderates to “revolutionize” its religion in an effort to slow the growth of radical Islam responsible for murder and terrorism.
Notably missing from the Paris unity rally- U.S. President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry.
Ring of Fire, is Iran in the Crosshairs? Story here
For more information on the Pacifica Institute click: here.
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