Zahid: Lack of information about Islam leads to negative opinions about religion


  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 21 Nov 2017

Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the risk assessment recommended that countries should actively target the small sub-set of NPOs most vulnerable to terrorism financing

IPOH: Insufficient information about the true teachings of Islam has led to negative and skewed opinions about the religion, said Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The Deputy Prime Minister added that it was such thinking which led to the misconception that Islam condones terrorism.

Speaking at the closing of the 4th World Conference on Islamic Thought and Civilisation here, he said contrary to such views, the idea of peace was deeply rooted in the daily lives of Muslims.

"The teachings of Islam clearly focuses on creating and maintaining global peace and harmony among the people.

"Any person claiming to be a Muslim and upholding Islam as his or her religion should be committed to ensuring peace while rejecting anything that brings about disunity and violence," he said.

Stressing that jihad does not refer to a holy war as commonly perceived, Dr Ahmad Zahid said jihad actually means to struggle or strive.
"Intentionally harming innocent people, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, is highly condemned in Islam.

"It is not part of jihad or anything close to that as it is sometimes made out to be.

"What the terrorist organisations did and are doing now are completely against the concept of jihad in Islam," he said.

The Government, he added, has taken various measures to curb terrorism, one of which was denying terrorist groups of funds and financial assistance from all quarters.

"We have also set up the King Salman Centre for International Peace in Putrajaya, aimed at deflecting the influences of extremism and terrorist activities, as well as to promote universal peace.

"Besides the military aspect, the centre also focuses on academic elements with the main aim to combat terrorist threats and the spread of propaganda and ideologies by extremists and terrorists," he added.

Dr Ahmad Zahid later announced a RM3mil allocation from the Government for the setting up of the Asean Centre For Islam, Peace and Non-Violence at Universiti Sultan Azlan Shah (USAS) in Kuala Kangsar.

He said at a press conference later that the upcoming centre, together with the Counter-Messaging Centre in Bukit Aman, would complement the work of the King Salman Centre For International Peace in enhancing the nation's role in countering terrorism and extremism at the international level.
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