Home > News > Nation
Monday April 28, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Monday April 28, 2014 MYT 8:39:08 AM
Mosque tour: Syaikh Ismail (right) showing Obama around the National Mosque in Kuala Lumpur. — Bernama
KUALA LUMPUR: As a 22-year-old tahfiz (religious school) student, Tan Sri Syaikh Ismail Muhammad met US president Lyndon B. Johnson at the National Mosque in 1966.
Yesterday, he met another US president – Barack Obama – this time as the grand imam of the mosque.
Obama started his day with a visit to the mosque, symbolising his approach in reaching out to the Muslim world.
In keeping with the customs, he took off his shoes before stepping into the premises and was welcomed by Syaikh Ismail and committee members.
The president walked alongside Syaikh Ismail and took in the breathtaking 73m high minaret and a 16-point star concrete main roof, the key features of the mosque, before stopping at its main prayer hall.
He stopped to pay respects at the Warrior’s Mausoleum.
On his 25-minute tour with the American leader, Syaikh Ismail said Obama asked him to “pray for me” and his struggles to end any act of oppression against Muslims around the world.
“He also told me that he would do his best to put an end to oppression against Muslims and to stop any kind of humanitarian crisis,” Syaikh Ismail said.
On his first meeting with a US president, he said: “I was 22 years old when I met President Johnson. I was a tahfiz student (a Quranic recitation course). I did not expect to meet another US President in my lifetime after almost 50 years!”
Syaikh Ismail was impressed with Obama’s ability to understand some Bahasa Malaysia, pointing out that there were times he spoke in that language to the president and received a nod.
He said Obama often replied Insya Allah and Terima Kasih.
Tags / Keywords:
Nation, Family & Community, obama, national mosque, Barack Obama, US President, United States, Malaysia, Asia Pacific
Obama pays respects at National Mausoleum
Engaging Asia - and the Muslims
Veteran actor Ismail dies at age 73
Muslim NGOs hold protest against Obama's visit
Man gets 12 years’ jail and six strokes for gang robbery
No more petrol subsidy for high-income earners
Bukit Beruntung landslide: Round-the-clock policing for evacuated homes, says Rohani
Johor crown prince Tunku Ismail marries Khaleeda
Penang bans foreign cooks of hawker food
Rizalman extradited to New Zealand
IGP: Nabbed Colombians not linked to ATM hackings
Hon Hai says reviewing investments after media reports on US$5.7bil China plant
Teenager Coric stuns Nadal to reach Basel semis
Tickets to 'Elmo Makes Music'
Copyright © 1995-2014 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)