For Morocco, Religion Should Serve as a Bulwark against Extremism – FM –
For Morocco, religion should serve as a bulwark against extremism, as advocated by HM King Mohammed VI through the Kingdom’s religious diplomacy in Africa, said on Friday in Tangier the Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad, Nasser Bourita. “For Morocco, country of the Commandery of the Faithful, religion should serve as a bulwark against extremism rather than its pretext. This is what HM the King calls for, through the religious diplomacy of the Kingdom in Africa”, Mr. Bourita pointed out at the opening of the “Tangier Dialogue” International Conference, noting that the Mohammed VI Foundation of African Ulemas and the Mohammed VI Institute for the Training of Imams, Mourchidines and Mourchidates are there precisely to counter the radicalism that rages at the gates of Africa and to promote a moderate Islam. Religion finds its most eloquent expression in the Al-Quds Call, in which HM King Mohammed VI and Pope Francis called for preserving the Holy City of Jerusalem / Al-Quds Acharif as common heritage of humanity and, above all for the followers of the three monotheistic religions, as a meeting place and a symbol of peaceful coexistence, where mutual respect and dialogue are cultivated”. “With a few exceptions, the relationship between the West and the Muslim world has not always been completely harmonious. This may be historically obvious, but not inevitable,” noted Mr. Bourita, adding that “we need to reset relations between the West and Muslim countries.” The minister underlined, in this regard, that Morocco, under the leadership of HM the King, demonstrates that the Muslim world is not a burden for the West; on the contrary, a country that provides national responses to pressing global issues, and which actively contributes to debates and actions on these issues. “It is moreover a central ally in the fight against terrorism, a credible partner against climate change, and a responsible actor in the management of migration”, he pointed out. He also welcomed the choice of Tangier to host a dialogue of this level, which aims to be a debate rooted in history, resolutely future-oriented and authentically focused on sharing, noting that “if Morocco is the ideal place for this, it is first of all thanks to the leadership and the vision of HM King Mohammed VI”. The minister stressed that the principles of openness and tolerance and the values of peace and living together are part of the Kingdom’s DNA, adding “and who better to embody this spirit of openness and mixing than Tangier, (…), which, under the impetus of HM the King, has risen, modernized and opened up even more to the world, without ever losing its soul”. “It is not insignificant that it is Tangier that welcomes us. Between 2 continents, 2 shores and 2 seas; Tangier has always been the crossroads and the link. It has always kept its eyes on the horizon and the soul open to the Other”, he said, adding that “there is no doubt we too could find there the necessary inspiration for a lucid and fruitful reflection”. The minister, who stressed the importance of the Aladdin project, noted that its action goes beyond organizing such meeting, and its impact can also be deeper. He underlined Morocco’s commitment to this Project, welcoming, in this regard, the effective commitment of Mr. André Azoulay, Adviser to HM the King. “The Aladdin Project has come to crystallize a long-standing Moroccan commitment: The same commitment that was expressed through the protection of fellow Jewish citizens by the late HM Mohammed V, in the face of xenophobia and Nazism. The same commitment that was expressed through the spirit of brotherhood and openness cultivated by the late HM Hassan II between Jews and Muslims all over the world. The same commitment that is expressed today, and for more than 2 decades, through the commitment of HM King Mohammed VI, to integrate the Hebrew tributary into the Moroccan Constitution and to enhance and safeguard the national Jewish heritage”, he pointed out. Mr. Bourita hailed the committed and tireless leadership of Miguel Angel Moratinos, High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, a UN organization that works for international action against fundamentalism through cooperation and intercultural and interreligious dialogue. “The Alliance is necessary, today more than ever, at such a special moment in history, when certainties are shifting, when geopolitics is being rewritten, and when the causes at the very origin of the creation of the Alliance are experiencing an unprecedented resurgence,” he noted, stressing that Morocco intends to host the 9th Alliance Forum this year, for the first time in Africa. Organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccans Abroad, in partnership with the Aladdin Project and the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), under the theme “Towards a New, Shared Enlightenment”, this meeting seeks to discuss several topical, urgent and major issues related to interreligious coexistence and intercultural dialogue.