Friday, 28 September 2012

British Muslims Response to Anti-Islam Film

British Muslims Response to Anti-Islam Movie

Dr. Mozammel Haque
An anti-Islam movie, “Innocence of Muslims” produced and promoted by a collection of rightwing Christian evangelicals and exiled Egyptian Copt based in the United States, which crudely denigrates the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Since the subject was raised on the international level and the Muslims know about it everywhere and since some developments and actions have taken place in many Muslim countries, it is appropriate and timely to address this topic.

The Fact
The 13-minute virulent Islamophobic, deeply hateful video, practically unwatchable production called “The Innocence of Muslims” that attack on the Prophet was uploaded on the YouTube in July. The amateurish film was created with the intention of both destabilizing the Muslim countries and provoking the religious feelings of Muslims by defaming the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned this anti-Islam film and called it a “disgusting, reprehensible and cynical” anti-Muslim film. She said, “To us, to me, personally, this video is disgusting and reprehensible. It appears to have a deeply cynical purpose, to denigrate a great religion and to provoke rage.”

This dirty, filthy anti-Islam film sparked protests worldwide. Saudi Arabia condemned the “violent reactions in several countries against US interests” and denounced “the production by an irresponsible group in the United States of a film insulting Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

People of the Islamic faith provoked because their religion was trodden upon by concerted, evil attempts by some individuals to denigrate a sacred and holy faith. Muslims love their Prophet more than their parents, children and all the people. Love for the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is a measure of one’s Imaan (faith and conviction). The Holy Qur’an says: “The Prophet is preferable for the believers even to their own selves.” (The Holy Qur’an 33:6).

Love of the Prophet is love of all the beauty and nobility of character, truthfulness, justness, humility and inner strength of which man is capable and which the Prophet as Perfect Man possessed on the utmost degree. On the other hand, the Prophet’s love was not limited just to the believers, in a way he loved all of God’s creation. Allah says in the Qur’an: “We have not sent you (O Prophet) but as Mercy to all the worlds.” (The Holy Qur’an 21:107).

Saudi Arabia condemned the film as “irresponsible” but it denounced violent anti-American protests and expressed condolences to the US over the killings in Benghazi. Muslim leaders and people worldwide reject and condemn violent protest and the unlawful acts of killing people and burning properties.

British Muslims Response
In order to find out the British Muslims response to this anti-Islam movie, I have conducted an interview with Muslim community leaders, Muslim parliamentarians and went to take note of the Friday sermon by Imams at Mosque. Last Friday, Imams and Khatibs of different Mosques in London, particularly, the Islamic Cultural Centre and the Regents Park Central London Mosque and the East London Mosque in Whitechapel delivered Khutba on the anti-Islam Movie.

Dr. Ahmad Saifuddin Turkistani, an University Professor and well-known Dawah worker and Imam, delivered Sermon (Khutba) at the Islamic Cultural Centre and Regents Park Central London Mosque on Friday, the 21st September, 2012 .

Friday Sermon at Islamic Cultural Centre &
Central London Mosque, London
In the khutba (Sermon) Dr. Turkistani first elaborated on the status of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) first by pointing out the great position of all Prophets of Allah and their high status in Islam and the need for their messages. Then he mentioned about the coming of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the master of all Prophets, though he said, “We do not want to differentiate among the Prophets.”

The next point which the Imam, Dr. Turkistani mentioned in his khutba, is about the message of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) which is highest and indeed to spread the message of peace, understanding and tranquillity among all peoples of the world and for that purpose he faced many challenges in his own time and many people in Makkah and Madina insulted him, accused him and even plotted to kill him and yet he kept going on delivering and conveying the message of Allah. For this reason, Allah said in the Qur’an about him, “We have sent you as Mercy to all the world”.

Then referring to the latest Californian movie, “Innocence of Muslims”, Dr. Turkistani said in his khutba, the latest film was very bad in taste, in language, in production, which made and try to demean, to attack or insult the person of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his message. But of course, in no way, the producer could not reach nor did it reach to any of his goals namely creating division among Muslims and Christians particularly in Egypt and over the Muslim world.

What the Imam, Dr. Turkistani, emphasized in the khutba was how to deal with such an attack. He said this is not the first and will not be the last attack to injure the honour of the Prophet (peace be upon him) or his message. “Therefore, unlike what they wanted to do, it provided an opportunity to create more interest in the life of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and the message of Islam. This means that many books and copies of the Qur’an and more literature on Islam will be sold and many Islamic websites will be visited by audiences in the West and throughout the world,” said Dr. Turkistani in his Friday sermon. 

The Imam at the Regents Park Central London Mosque said in his Friday sermon, “The response of Muslims should not be to attack embassies or consulates or western people who live in the Muslim world or anywhere and is not to violently protest and prostrate in the street creating chaos and disorder.”

The Imam, Dr. Turkistani, said in his Friday Sermon, “What is needed is to be committed to the way of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and to convey his message and to take all possible and legal means to defend his message and explain his biography with wisdom and evidence. It is an opportunity for Muslims at all levels to be active in promoting the message of Islam in the form of dawah with wisdom and good preaching as Allah commands.”

Sir Iqbal Sacranie
I had the opportunity to discuss with Sir Iqbal Sacranie, the founding Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) and the joint convenor of the UK Action Committee on Islamic Affairs about the anti-Islam movie. Speaking about the movie, Sir Iqbal said, “First of all there is no doubt that Muslims, wherever they live, whatever background they come from, feel pain and deeply hurt at any insult on the personality of their beloved Prophet (peace be upon him). This pain and hurt is only natural and spontaneous but needs to be controlled.”

“What we must remember that this is not the first time that such abuse and insult is made on the very foundation of our faith. Throughout centuries, in fact, at the time of our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him), there were elements in the society who not only threw verbal insults but caused physical pain to our noble Prophet (peace be upon him). Sadly, this irresponsible and reprehensible behaviour will continue for years to come as long as Islam continues to grow in strength and plays a very constructive role in the society,” mentioned Sir Iqbal.

Sir Iqbal also said, “There are mischievous and arrogant elements and Islamophobe in the society whose main role is to demonise Islam and create havoc. The question that needs to be asked is how should Muslims react to this abuse and insult carried out in the name of freedom of expression.”

Speaking about how Muslims should react to this type of abuse, Sir Iqbal mentioned, “First and foremost we should follow the example of how our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) responded to such attacks. He responded evil actions with good actions. He was brought in as Mercy to Mankind and his exemplary behaviour towards his adversaries is a shinning example of how we should react to such situation. We are living in a society where we have a right to express our views freely without fear of prosecution. Such abuse and insult should be challenged in a responsible manner. We need to assert the principle of civility in communication. We also need to assert that we are living in a civilised society where the society demands responsible journalism. There is no such thing as freedom of expression in its absolute sense. It only exists in a state of anarchy.”

In this connection, Sir Iqbal pointed out that in every civilised society, there are laws that curb freedom of expression such as laws of defamation, laws of censorship, and laws of treason. These laws are there to protect the society against mischief and commotion.

Sir Iqbal mentioned, “In nearly every country in the west, we have laws that protect the group of people because of their culture and religion such as Jews who have protection against anti-Semitism and denial of holocaust. The gay community is protected against discrimination and anyone who insults them can be prosecuted under the equality legislation as homophobic. We have laws of inciting religious hatred but unfortunately it is very narrow and does not protect faith communities against vilification of their faith. It is about time that the national and international laws give protection to faith communities against act of sacrilege and vilification.”

Talking about how to tackle this sort of vilification, Sir Iqbal mentioned about the historical resolution asking for the international convention on vilification, “It is now more than 20 years since the UK Action Committee on Islamic Affairs first presented resolution to the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) for the need of International Convention on Vilification. Since then the OIC has been working over the years with the United Nations to bring about such Convention. It is heartening to note today vast number of Muslim countries including Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Turkey, Egypt and Pakistan among many, are strongly advocating for such convention which will send a powerful signal to the world community that vilification or demonization of any faith or religion is unacceptable in a civilised society.”

British Parliamentarian Khalid Mahmood,
MP for Perry Barr, Birmingham
I had the opportunity to talk to British Parliamentarian, Khalid Mahmood, Member of Parliament from Perry Barr, Birmingham and I enquired about the anti-Islam movie. Mr. Mahmood said, “The purpose of this type of anti-Islam movie is to antagonise the Muslim community. What is needed for us to do is that “We will have to rise above it and deal with it diplomatic and constructive way.”

“Rather than demonstration, we should have demand for state sanction against this issue,” said Mr. Mahmood.

Lord Adam Patel of Blackburn
I also met Lord Adam Patel of Blackburn and wanted to know his opinion about the Movie entitled “Innocence of Muslims”, Lord Patel said, “Publishers of that Film knew that Muslims throughout the world are going to oppose and going to give free publicity for them. So directly or indirectly we are fulfilling their objectives. For that particular reason we should totally keep quiet and should not give free publicity to them.”

Lord Nazir Ahmed of Rotherham
I spoke to Lord Nazir Ahmed of Rotherham, the first Muslim Peer of the House of Lords and enquired his observation on the concerned movie, Lord Ahmed said, “When they attack black people, we call it “Racism”. When they attack Jewish people, we call it “Anti-Semitism”. When they attack women, we call it sexism and “Gender discrimination”. When they attack Homosexuality, we call it “homophobia and intolerance”. When they attack a religious sect, we call it “Hate speech”. But when they attack the dignity of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) they call it “Freedom of expression”. Why???”

Referring to the violent protest and demonstration, Lord Ahmed said, “Burning our own buildings and killing our own police officers is not an answer. An international law against incitement to religious hatred and rules for YouTube and Google is a must. Freedom of Expression balanced with responsibility.”

Lord Ahmed also mentioned, “This amateur abusive, insulting and filth film is not worthy of the reaction shown by Muslims. Certain leaders have used it for their own political power. It needs an intellectual response. Here are the great examples about our Prophet (peace be upon him).”

Lord Ahmed said, “Rational approach of all believing people at all times should be to present facts as they are. Truth always conquers falsehood - no matter what?”

Lord Ahmed mentioned what other believing people had to say about Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)!

Alphonse de La Martaine in 'Historie
de la Turquie,' Paris, 1854
“If greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astonishing results are the three criteria of a human genius, who could dare compare any great man in history with Muhammad?

"Philosopher, Orator, Apostle, Legislator, Conqueror of Ideas, Restorer of Rational beliefs.... The founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire that is Muhammad. As regards all standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?"

Sir George Bernard Shaw in 'The Genuine
Islam,' Vol. 1, No. 8, 1936
“If any religion had the chance of ruling over England, nay Europe within the next hundred years, it could be Islam." “I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion which appears to me to possess that assimilating capacity to the changing phase of existence which can make itself appeal to every age. I have studied him - the wonderful man and in my opinion far from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Savior of Humanity.”

“I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness: I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”

Michael Hart in 'The 100, A Ranking of the Most
Influential Persons In History,' New York, 1978
“My choice of Muhammad to lead the list of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the secular and religious level. ...It is probable that the relative influence of Muhammad on Islam has been larger than the combined influence of Jesus Christ and St. Paul on Christianity. ...It is this unparalleled combination of secular and religious influence which I feel entitles Muhammad to be considered the most influential single figure in human history.”

Rodwell in the Preface to his translation
of the Holy Qur'an
“Mohammad's career is a wonderful instance of the force and life that resides in him who possesses an intense faith in God and in the unseen world. He will always be regarded as one of those who have had that influence over the faith, morals and whole earthly life of their fellow men, which none but a really great man ever did, or can exercise; and whose efforts to propagate a great verity will prosper.”

W. Montgomery Watt in 'Muhammad at Mecca,'
Oxford, 1953
“His readiness to undergo persecution for his beliefs, the high moral character of the men who believed in him and looked up to him as a leader, and the greatness of his ultimate achievement - all argue his fundamental integrity. To suppose Muhammad an impostor raises more problems that it solves. Moreover, none of the great figures of history is so poorly appreciated in the West as Muhammad.... Thus, not merely must we credit Muhammad with essential honesty and integrity of purpose, if we are to understand him at all; if we are to correct the errors we have inherited from the past, we must not forget the conclusive proof is a much stricter requirement than a show of plausibility, and in a matter such as this only to be attained with difficulty.”

Teaching of Prophet's Biography at Schools

Teaching of Prophet’s Biography at
British Muslim Schools
Dr. Mozammel Haque
The teaching of Prophet’s (peace be upon him) biography at the British Muslim Schools was discussed at a Seminar on “Teaching of Prophet’s (peace be upon him) Biography: Methodology and Expectations” organised by Islamic Cultural Centre, London, in partnership with the Makkah-based Muslim World League, on Wednesday, the 29th of August, 2012 at the Islamic Cultural Centre, London.

While inaugurating the Seminar, Dr. Ahmed al-Dubayan, the Director General of the Islamic Cultural Centre, said that we all know that the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) biography is the second source of Islam and Shari’ah. “It is very important for all Muslims and especially recently now in the last few years this biography was actually criticised unobjectively and was presented often not in good way in many media, and also there are many books articles talking about biographies of the Prophet (peace be upon him) but not presented the Prophet (PBUH) the right way” he said.

Dr. Dubayan also mentioned that at the same time we, as Muslims, think that there is a lack of materials or shortage of materials or texts about the Prophet’s biography available for Muslim schools, available for Muslim teachers. “We believe Muslim communities everywhere in the world need to fill this gap and give more concentration and do more studies to represent the biography of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to convey the message to the new generation of the Muslim and to convey the right message of Islam to those people who are not Muslim.”

Dr. Dubayan also mentioned that we know that there are some who would like to deface Islam itself by telling about some wrong stories, some weak Hadiths. “It is our duty as Muslims to defend the biography of the Prophet (peace be upon him) not only by criticising others but also by presenting the biography of the Prophet (PBUH) and studying it again and trying to get more lessons from it and to get really new lessons for the new generation.”

ICC Director General also mentioned about the importance of modern technology which actually offers us “a platform and giving us a ground and more chances for all Muslims, all researchers and scholars and scholars at large who really want to know more about it and to encourage Muslims. He urged the Muslim teachers and Islamic educationists to give this a more concentration and a serious consideration and research.

Dr. Adel Al-Shiddy
Dr. Adel al-Shiddy, the Assistant Secretary General of the Makkah-based Muslim World League (MWL), in his speech as a chief guest said, “The Muslim World League is carrying its duties under the directives of the its Secretary General to support all the efforts for the teaching of the biography of the Prophet (peace be upon him) as a way to understand Islam and putting our youth also on the right way to understand Islam and follow the biography of the Prophet (peace be upon him).”

Dr. Shiddy also mentioned that Muslims are forming the cornerstone for carrying the Islamic teachings to the Muslims around the world and correcting the wrong concept about Islam and the Prophet (peace be upon him).

While mentioning that the League have noticed in its tours that the Muslims in the UK have most powerful understanding and providing the most beneficial efforts to carry the message of Islam and spreading the teachings of Islam, Dr. Shiddy said, “We need them to continue this effort and to avoid any dispute.”

Dr. Al-Shiddy agrees with Dr. Dubayan for new media to be used as a method to spread Islam in a good way and also the Prophet’s biography. He focussed on three methods that we need to provide would be to build on three important units: i) The first one is the norms and manners of the Prophet (PBUH). The Prophet used to practice including truthful trust; and being tolerant. Most of the people need it today. ii) The second thing is the human relation between the Prophet (PBUH) and all those people around him. He used to be husband; he used to be the friend to his friends and he used to be father and also with other peoples with whom he practised his good manners and iii) the third thing is the dialogue and understanding the others where the Prophet (PBUH) preserved this manner of dialogue and understanding the others.

Dr, Shiddy hoped that this meeting will come out with some practical recommendations and the Muslim World League will find some universities in the United Kingdom, to provide them with the theoretical curriculum about the Prophet’s biography; such as the Leeds University. The League is working to provide more of these authoritative texts and curriculum to most of the Islamic institutions around the United Kingdom, he mentioned.

Dr. Shiddy also announced at the meeting the publication of a new Magazine of Seerah.

Mr. Muhammad Ismail, Researcher
and Educationalist
Mr. Muhammad Ismail, Researcher and educationalist spoke on the Teaching of Prophet’s (Peace be upon him) Biography in Britain. While speaking about the teaching of Prophet’s biography, Mr. Ismail mentioned, “It is an integral part of the fabric of Islam, and the study of the Seerah is followed by the practising of the Sunnah which leads to the understanding of the Qur’an; therefore the study of the Seerah is essential for every Muslim from a very young age to shape their life.”

Speaking about the present situation of the British Muslim School, Mr. Ismail said, “Each school is different from another school so far as the curriculum and teaching in any school is concerned. So correctly there is no unison in the curriculum. Various teaching methods have been adopted. Various different teaching methods are used, for example, pictorial stories, worksheets, the commercially produced textbooks which come from various sources; some of which are even non-authentic.”

Holding an Annual Seerah Conference in the UK
Mr. Ismail has put forward some suggestions before the Conference to consider, such as i) the organiser should hold an Annual Seerah Conference in the UK at the Islamic Cultural Centre, inviting politicians, intellectuals and the media to talk at the conference to create awareness; ii) Formation of an organisation, named as National Seerah Secretariat at the Islamic Cultural Centre, which will go throughout the country by adopting different activities for the propagation of the Seerah, such as visiting state schools offering them free lectures about Islam and the life of the Prophet (peace be upon him); iii) to promote Seerah with young British Muslim by organising competitions and awards for best achieving schools and people in the subject of Seerah; and finally iv) This conference should form a committee of 5 to 10 scholars and educationists to produce and select authenticated English resources appropriate textbooks for teaching the Seerah of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the British Muslim schools.

Dr. Abdullah Shaheen, Markfield Institute
Dr. Abdullah Shaheen of the Markfield Institute of Higher Education (MIHE), Leicester, while dealing with teaching of Prophet’s biography, said “What we are discussing today is essentially education, what we call pedagogic issue.”

“What we need today. How best we can teach communicate the values, Dr. Adel mentioned about this, values of the Prophet (peace be upon him) represented; manners, mercy, forgiveness, leadership, conflict resolution, peace, role as a husband, as a neighbour. This wider picture of Muhammad (peace be upon him) could not be taught unless we also consider the pedagogical educational questions how do we teach, i.e. we have an understanding of the objectives of our teaching, we have an understanding of our curriculum the teaching methods,” said Dr. Shaheen.

Dr. Shaheen said, “We have to prioritize the fact that teaching Seerah of the Prophet and Islam requires an important pedagogic awareness. How do we achieve this? We have to prioritize this does not quite educational thinking about Islam. His guidance is a kind of message for the whole humanity."

Dr. Shaheen argued, “Our teaching curriculum, the technique and ways of teaching also prioritize which I would like to call humanity of Muhammad (peace be upon him) so that we can enlarge our aim to include his proper understanding to achieve the wider audience in the West.”

Dr. Shaheen also mentioned that we have to bear in mind that we are living in a wider reality, of course, in the 21st century British society and Islam is being taught within non-Muslim perspectives. One issue that always coming up is which we call the Western Orientalists’ way of looking at the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) life. The heart at it is something called historical critical thinking and in fact the claim implicitly was Muslims are unable to utilise critical historical thinking; therefore what they present to us is a mythical based no evidence of their own faith.”

Dr. Shaheen mentioned his experience at the MIHE and said, “What we do when we teach Seerah at the Markfield Institute we deliberately spend three sessions on this thing called critical historical thinking. Can it be complimented or can it actually be implemented within the Islamic framework and we draw upon the study of Seerah and the study of Hadith. We all aware that the degree of application of comparative historical thinking is already present within Islamic tradition of self-understanding. In another words what we need to do is to retrieve this critical thinking within our own tradition and actually apply worldwide any aspect of Islam today including the life of the Prophet (peace be upon him).”

Construct a contemporary Seerah Curriculum
Dr. Shaheen also pointed out,“ I would say that one important area of investment is to look at the pedagogic and educational aspects of how best we can construct a contemporary Seerah curriculum; identify critical objective and effective teaching method and how do we evaluate the teaching?” He emphasized, “We have to enable the Muslim teachers with relevant pedagogic skills to be able actually to teach effectively; we have to produce materials, teaching methods within that framework.”

Dr. Shaheen lamented and said, “It is unfortunate that we are on the presence of the fourth generation of Muslims in Europe; we do not yet have a proper Muslim teachers training college. My view would be to the Rabita Al-Alam al-Islami and the Islamic Cultural Centre here to make long term plan when we can actually establish one day a proper European Muslim Teachers’ Training Centre to produce our own teachers with the effective pedagogical skills of teaching Islam properly. We have not achieved it; we are still divided within ourselves in trying to reproduce one authentic way of teaching Islam.”

European Muslim Teachers’ Training Centre
“I think time has arrived this issue cannot be addressed in a piecemeal manner. It has to be properly addressed and what is needed is to create an Islamic educational teacher training centre where we will produce these materials which will enable the Muslim teachers with the relevant pedagogic skills. We produce materials that will hopefully present Islam and the Biography of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the best authentic picture. Without this kind of long term planning we cannot really address this issue; they will all stay as advertisement and we want to go beyond that level, if that is possible,” said Dr. Shaheen.

Another point which Dr. Shaheen mentioned is about Muslim children studying at the mainstream public schools. He said, “In this country most of the Muslim young people, children and kids attend to the mainstream schools. In this country, RE, i.e. Religious Education is determined at the local education level. We have to make it sure within that Local Education Authority the RE contains an element about Prophet’s (peace be upon him) life and his humanity. That should be our last point. Because majority of our young people go to the mainstream school.”

Prophet’s Humanity in the mainstream school
“We should not put all our aim into one basket. There are half a million Muslim kids in the mainstream schools. We have to make it sure that the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) life, his humanity, his leadership, his values, at least presented within the mainstream schools at the Local Education Authority level as well and there are ways of achieving this. All we have to do is: we have to present our case,” said Dr. Shaheen.

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Dr. Naseef becomes Member of the Constituent Council of Rabita

Dr. Naseef becomes Member of the
Constituent Council of Rabita
Dr. Mozammel Haque
I met Dr. Abdullah Omar Naseef, the President of the World Muslim Congress at Dublin, capital of the Republic of Ireland in the first week of June, 2012. He came from Saudi Arabia to attend and participate at the International Conference on Islamic Finance & Investment. Dr. Naseef was awarded Lifetime Achievement Award by Muneer Satardien on behind of the Conference and also another Award of Excellence at the conference.

During this meeting with Dr. Naseef, I came to know that he would be going to attend a meeting in Istanbul Turkey and then go to Saudi Arabia to attend another meeting in Makkah on 15th June.

Dr. Naseef becomes Member of the Constituent
Council of Rabita Al-Alam al-Islami
I came to Jeddah in the first week of July and had the opportunity to meet Dr. Abdullah Omar Naseef, former Secretary General of the Makkah-based Muslim World League and the present Secretary General of the Cairo-based International Commission for the Council of Dawah and Relief (IICDR) at his office in Jeddah in the second week of July, 2012 before the month of Ramadan. I enquired about his meeting in Makkah on 15th of June 2012 about which Dr. Naseef told me at Dublin, Ireland in the first week of June, 2012.

Dr. Naseef told me that he was included in the Constituent Council of the Muslim World League (Rabita Alam al-Islami). Dr. Naseef said, “The meeting of the Constituent Council of Rabita Al-Alam al-Islami (Muslim World League) took place on two days beginning on 15 June 2012 and on the first day they have invited me and others, and about 15 people have been added in the Membership of the Constituent Council of Rabita. Immediately I joined the meeting.”

“So I am a Member of the Constituent Council of Rabita Al-Alam Al-Islami,” said Dr. Naseef.

In this connection, it may be mentioned that all the Secretary Generals of the Muslim World League (MWL) were ex-officio members of the Rabita. When Dr. Naseef was Secretary General of Rabita he was ex-officio Member of the Constituent Council of Rabita. All Secretary Generals of Rabita are its ex-officio members. So the previous Secretary Generals have been added to the Council. Dr. Ahmed Mohamed Ali is member; Dr. Abdullah Saleh Obaid is member. And now Dr. Naseef is included into the Council as member.

Dr. Naseef attended the meeting of the Deans of
Students Affairs in Istanbul, Turkey
I enquired about the meeting in Istanbul, Turkey. Speaking about the meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, Dr. Naseef said, “It was in Istanbul Turkey. There was a meeting of the Deans of Students Affairs of the Universities. The elites of students who are excellent in their grades and who have special achievements, they were invited to discuss what they should do for their Ummah. That was very fruitful meeting and the discussion was very good. The students were up to the standard and they give very good ideas.”

Dr. Naseef attended the Funeral of Prince Naif
Then Dr. Naseef attended the funeral of Prince Naif bin Abdul Aziz, the then Crown Prince, in the Haram in Makkah al-Mukarramah and gave condolences to King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz and the Royal Family. Dr. Naseef said, “I attended the funeral of Prince Naif in the Haram and gave condolences to the King and Royal Family.”

Dr. Neseef’s Ramadan Message
I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Abdullah Omar Naseef, former Secretary General of the Makkah-based Muslim World League and the present Secretary General of the Cairo-based International Commission for the Council of Dawah and Relief (IICDR) at his office in Jeddah in the second week of July, 2012 before the month of Ramadan and I requested him about his message for the Muslim community in this blessed month of Ramadan.

Dr. Naseef said, “Everybody knows that the Ramadan is the occasion when people get closer to Allah the Almighty and seek His Guidance and His Blessing and they spend the month in all kinds of worships and good deeds hasanats. They asked Allah the Almighty to make this Ramadan better for everybody and help the people who are harassed and aggressed upon in this month so that they can come out from this misery situation. Insha Allah, there will be better situation for everybody.”

Speaking about his advice to the Muslim community, Dr. Naseef said, “We have to request Muslims to be more sincere, to be more adherence to their religion and to be more realizing that this month of Ramadan is a school of training, guidance and changing.” Dr. Naseef also added, “We are advising them, the Muslims, to be more sincere to Allah the Almighty and appealing to Him day and night and adhering to His Orders and His Commandments. This is the opportunity to seek forgiveness from Allah the Almighty for their sins. So this is the opportunity one should not miss. This opportunity should be availed of by every Individual everywhere in the Muslim world.”

“I hope, this Ramadan will improve the quality of the Muslims Insha Allah,” Dr. Naseef said.