M'sia, Turkiye reach consensus on addressing Islamophobia, says Anwar

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 21 Sep 2023

PETALING JAYA: Malaysia and Turkiye have reached a consensus on ways to address Islamophobia and racism, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (pic).

He said both countries will undertake efforts to deal with those issues through various ongoing and future measures, adding in a post on his social media accounts on Thursday (Sept 21) that he and Turkiye President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have agreed to enhance cooperation and strategies to curb anti-Muslim hate groups around the world.

“We agreed that more intensified efforts are needed on the clarification (on Islamophobia).If this issue is not addressed with proper solutions, there will be repercussion in the future especially for the next generation,” he said.

Both leaders are in New York to attend the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and held a bilateral meeting at the Turkish House here earlier.

Anwar said Turkiye will implement those strategies in Europe and the Middle East and Malaysia will do so in Asia.

He also said that discussions were held on the need to increase bilateral cooperation related to investment and trade including the Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB) terminal expansion at Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport (ISG) and defense ecosystem cooperation between the two countries.

Meanwhile, Bernama reported at a press conference in New York that Anwar said a series of conferences were organised prior to this and added that they will continue to be held.

"Further discussions on efforts against Islamophobia will continue to be pursued during Erdogan’s visit to Malaysia in December,” he said.

In addition to conferences and explanatory sessions, the Prime Minister said efforts to address prejudice and extreme attitudes towards Islam to the global community through publications will also be done, among them by publishing 100,000 copies of the Quran in various languages.

This includes 15,000 copies translated in Swedish, which have been sent to that country, he said, while adding that copies of the Quran have also been distributed to countries such as Australia and the United States, among others, and also learning centres, universities and mosques.

In the 30-minute-long meeting, both leaders also issued a joint statement titled "Increasing Hatred, Intolerance, Discrimination and Acts of Violence Against Muslims and Their Sanctities” to express their views on anti-Muslim sentiments.

In the statement, Anwar and Erdogan also voiced their concerns about the growing threat of Islamophobia and the burning of the Quran in several European countries, while urging the UN and governments around the world to enhance efforts toward religious tolerance.

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