Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Saudi Arabia’s king proposes interfaith dialogue

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has proposed an interfaith dialogue between Muslim, Jewish, and Christian leaders, reports The Associated Press Wednesday March 26th . His proposal took place at a crucial time when tensions and anger within the Middle East are high.

It is significant that King Abdullah has proposed this dialogue because Saudi Arabia is a strict Islamic country, which only allows Muslim religious services. It is also home to both Mecca and Medina, the two holiest shrines in Islam.

King Abdullah, considered a reformer in his country, is the first Arab leader to propose an interfaith dialogue. He wishes to include the three monotheistic religions in order to “agree on something that guarantees the preservation of humanity against those who tamper with ethics, family systems and honesty.”

An anonymous Saudi official was quoted as saying “the initiative is not aimed at the Middle East but at the whole world.”

Not only does the ban on freedom of religion in Saudi Arabia affect non-Muslims, it also affects some Muslim sects, such as Sufis and Shiites. It will become clear after the dialogue has taken place whether or not the ban on non-Muslim worship services will be lifted.

For the full article, click here.


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