Islamic Conference ministers meet in Iran
The 30th gathering of foreign ministers and representatives from the Organization of Islamic Conference kicked off inTehran in the presence of Iranian President Muhammad Khatami, the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported. The OIC, an umbrella group of Muslim nations from around the world, focused on the situation in Iraq, the Israeli- Palestinian conflict, and the global campaign against terrorism, according to IRNA.
During their four-day talks, the 57 member states, except Iraq, are also expected to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, the issue of disarmament, the status of Muslim minorities in non-member states and President Khatami's favorite topic: dialog among civilizations". In his inaugural speech, President Khatami proposed a "coalition for peace based on justice instead of efforts to coax countries into war". He said that to root out war and fight deprivation, ways should be found to fight despotism and defend the independence of countries and nations.
"Today, many Muslim countries suffer from the chronic problem of underdevelopment," President Khatami said. "This is particularly acute among the Muslims in such countries as Afghanistan or Somalia, which have suffered from civil war for long periods." Referring to Iraq, he urged the end of what he called occupation of the country and the establishment of an "Iraqi government by the Iraqi people".
Among the participants are Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher, Arab League chief Amr Moussa and Philippine Foreign Secretary Blas Ople, whose predominantly Christian country has a large Muslim minority. The first meeting of the OIC foreign ministers was held inJeddah, Saudi Arabia, in 1971. Khartoum, Sudan, hosted last year's event.Qatar is now the chairman of the Jeddah-based OIC and Malaysia will assume the next presidency of the body later this year.
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The perfect way to discover Islam
EVERYWHERE you look inBahrain there are mosques, but few non-Muslim residents have ever been inside one. Many are unaware that there are four mosques in Bahrain which actively encourage visitors, in the hopes that by seeing the prayer halls for themselves and meeting Muslim guides, they will gain a better understanding of Islam.
Ahmed Al Fateh Islamic Centre co-ordinator Farahat Al Kindy is on a mission to raise awareness about the visitor programs and encourage people of all faiths to take advantage of them.He organizes tours of the Al Fateh Grand Mosque in Juffair and Saar Islamic Centre Mosque.
Visitors are also welcome to the mosque at Beit Al Quran and the historic Khamis mosque, which is no longer in use.The program has become very successful since it was launched in 1998 at Al Fateh Grand Mosque. In the first year the centre attracted 2,000 visitors, now the figure has reached 8,000 annually. Most are tourists, others come in groups from schools and the US Naval Support Activity and there is the occasional resident who comes along with visiting relatives.
Taken From: http://www.gulf-daily-news.com/Articles.asp?Article=53051&Sn=BNEW
Egypt: Qur’an Research Center set up
The Egyptian Government had approved the setting up of theScientific Academy for Research into the Qur’an and the Sunnah here. The new building occupies an area of 2,500 square meters, and cost a total of half a million Egyptian Pounds. Dr. Ahmed Shawqi Ibrahim, chairman of the academy’ managing committee has disclosed that the main aim of the institution is to respond to the many claims made by the so-called Orientalists, in the proper manner, and to establish bonds of cooperation and coordination with other Islamic bodies working in the same field. He said there are number of scholars, academicians and media specialists in the academy, apart from the utilization of other scholars from outside the academy.
Taken From: http://www.islamicnews.org/english/en_daily.html