From the United Nations platform and with the participation of its leaders: Dr. Al-Issa launches the Muslim World League initiative of "Building bridges of understanding and peace between East and West" High attendance of representatives of the Permanent Missions of the UN Member States, leaders of religions, civil society organizations, and academia Dr. Al-Issa in his speech to the leaders of the United Nations, representatives of permanent missions, and religious leaders: - Communication for acquaintance and cooperation between nations and peoples is a divine call in all heavenly laws and the texts of Islam call for it as well - If every civilization has the right to exist, it also has its own specificity. And it is not possible to call for the fusion of civilizations or the superiority of one of them over the others unless it has the potential for that Civilizational alliance while "understanding the specificities of identity" is an urgent necessity for the peace of our world and the harmony of its national societies We call for the promotion of understanding and cooperation among nations and peoples and the recall of the historical events that emphasize the danger of the clash of civilizations We call on the Member States of the United Nations to adopt a proposal to the General Assembly to dedicate an international day to the civilizational alliance between East and West We call on Member States to promote the values of peace and harmony among nations and peoples in their educational curricula. President of the United Nations General Assembly: What connects organizations and associations is their remarkable ability to positively influence different social circles UN Secretary-General: We thank the MWL for this initiative, as dialogue among civilizations supports mutual respect among nations and peoples High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations: We are very pleased to support this event that enhances the dialogue among civilizations as a tool to build bridges of understanding and peace between East and West UN Special Adviser on Multiculturalism and Religions: The United Nations joins the MWL in its call for building bridges of understanding and peace between East and West UN Special Adviser on Multiculturalism and Religions: This meeting initiated by the MWL has never been witnessed by the United Nations. New York: The Muslim World League initiative: "Building Bridges of Understanding and Peace between East and West", was launched by His Excellency the MWL Secretary-General, President of the Association of Muslim Scholars, His Eminence Sheikh Dr. Muhammad bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa, at the United Nations headquarters in New York, with the participation of His Excellency the President of the United Nations General Assembly, Mr. Csaba Kőrösi, His Excellency the Secretary-General of the United Nations represented by his deputy, Mrs. Amina Mohammed, His Excellency the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, Mr. Miguel Moratinos, and His Excellency the Special Adviser on Multiculturalism and Religions at the United Nations, Mr. Arthur Wilson, and in the presence of senior United Nations leaders, representatives of the permanent missions of the UN Member States, religious leaders from different sects, bodies, civil society organizations, and academia. In his opening speech, His Excellency Dr. Al-Issa stressed the importance of strengthening the civilizational alliance, recognizing that each civilization has its own identity, which we must understand its right to exist, regardless of our disagreement with it, adding: When we talk about this topic, we talk about the importance of strengthening our civilizational alliance, and if we talk about that, the civilizations of the East and the West will be highlighted. He continued: We are all aware that each civilization has its own identity, which we must understand its right to exist regardless of our disagreement with it, and commented on this saying: "We mean by civilization the set of beliefs, ideas, and behaviors that constitute the conviction and behaviors of the public and not those of specific individuals, groups or private blocs which do not represent the public, including intellectual and behavioral developments that constitute the core of the conflict in one civilization." His Excellency added: "Without this understanding, we will call on everyone to adopt the theory of the inevitability of the civilizational clash and conflict, and then coexistence among the different nations will be an impossible requirement, and then we will call for recalling dark and painful episodes of our human history." He added affirming the following: First: Communication for acquaintance and cooperation between nations and peoples is a divine call in all heavenly laws, and in Islam in particular, God Almighty says: " and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another." Second: Each civilization has its own specificity and right to exist, and it is not possible to call for the fusion of civilizations into one civilization. No civilization has superiority over the other unless it has the potential for that away from the barbarism of power. In this way, we have no choice but to respect the divine wisdom in the diversity and inevitable differences in this life. Third: Human history (from time to time) still provides us with painful images of the results of the civilizational clash between East and West, which arose at the beginning from the exchange of sharp looks and phrases, despite the resemblance to each other, in addition to recalling historical, political and material events that do not represent the reality of the spiritual awareness of the followers of religions nor the purity of nations and peoples, but represent only those who were responsible for them, whether being affiliates of the East or the West who could not understand the wisdom of the Creator in difference and diversity. We have explicit texts in Islam that call for the respect of the dignity of others, emphasizing that there is no compulsion in religion, and calling for charity to peaceful people regardless of their identity. He added: From this international platform and in the presence of religious, intellectual, political, and media elites and civil society, we address the wise people of our world to realize with their wisdom the importance of promoting understanding, cooperation, and peace among nations and peoples and to recall the lessons of history that confirm to us the seriousness of the clash of civilizations, and the danger of the attempts to impose a certain culture on the others "in whole or in part". “We call on everyone to scrutinize human history, read it correctly, and pay attention to the falsifications, exaggerations, or wrong or extremist analysis of parts of it”, he added. He added: In all cases, the way of the wise is the effective and fruitful dialogue, and grasping the nature of this life that we share with all its troubles, and the closest example of this is the Corona pandemic, which affected everyone without exception. His Excellency stressed that the MWL was keen, through the Makkah Al-Mukarramah Document, which was signed by more than one thousand two hundred muftis and scholars of all Islamic sects and schools, to highlight the stance of Islam towards the followers of religions and civilizations and a number of important issues in our world. His Excellency said: I point out that the civilizational alliance between nations and peoples while understanding the specificity of each civilization, and not interfering in their affairs or offending their followers, is an urgent necessity for the peace of our world and the harmony of its national societies, and this is not an option that we accept or reject, but rather it is a necessity to determine a path and a destiny. Therefore, it is important to call on the member states of the United Nations to adopt a proposal to the General Assembly to dedicate an international day to the alliance of civilizations between East and West, in order to motivate the nations and peoples of the East and West towards more mutual trust, understanding, and effective cooperation in the face of instigators and beneficiaries of the spread of pessimistic ideas of the civilizational clash theory, as well as in the face of the generalization of judgments and impressions to everyone based on the mistake of an individual, or extremist groups. We also call on Member States to promote the values of peace and harmony among nations and peoples in their educational curricula. For his part, His Excellency the President of the United Nations General Assembly, Mr. Csaba Kőrösi, said, “We appreciate the MWL and His Excellency Dr. Mohammed Al-Issa for their valuable and remarkable efforts, adding: “A common factor among all religious organizations and associations is their wonderful ability to positively influence different social circles. There is a dire need for these organizations and associations in many areas of the world that are suffering." He stressed that what worries us most is that children are being affected by hate speech broadcast online, pointing out that this hatred spread on social media may produce tendencies of violence and discrimination in the future, so this speech must now be combated before escalating any more”. "Today, we observe the spread of Islamophobic rhetoric and its consequences on Muslim minorities in the world", he added. The speech of His Excellency the Secretary-General of the United Nations, delivered on his behalf by Her Excellency the Deputy Secretary-General, Mrs. Amina Mohammed, included thanks to His Excellency the Secretary-General of the MWL, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa, for this initiative, stressing that intercultural dialogue supports mutual respect among peoples, saying, "Our world today faces several complex problems such as climate change, food crisis and inequality among individuals, all of which have an important role in threatening societal cohesion." For his part, His Excellency Miguel Moratinos, High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, said: "I am very happy that today we are supporting this event dedicated to dialogue among civilizations and religions as a tool to build bridges of understanding and peace between East and West." "It is really pleasing to see that 18 years after the founding of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, state, and non-state actors are increasingly recognizing the influential power of interreligious and intercultural dialogue as a vital tool for building a harmonious and solidarity-based society; a society enriched by diversity; a society that is strong in its diversity and respect for every individual without distinction on grounds of religion, colour, race or gender; and a society that is just in protecting all its citizens equally and without discrimination. This is the basis for building a secured society, that is rightly described as a model society." "But unfortunately, my dear friends, that's not the real world. "Growing hate speech around the world and intolerance have created mistrust among people and marginalized entire communities." He asserted an unprecedented increase in cyber activities, the proliferation of online platforms used by hate mongers to recruit people around the world, and the rise of neo-Nazism and white supremacist movements that have also gained strength and become a threat to security in many countries. He concluded by saying, "Violent extremism and hate cannot be linked to religion; religion must be a positive force in our societies and lives, and religious leaders must play an important role in mobilizing communities to increase mutual respect and understanding." In the same context, His Excellency the Special Adviser on Multiculturalism and Religions at the United Nations, Mr. Arthur Wilson, said: "I congratulate my friend, His Excellency Dr. Mohammed Al-Issa, for leading this great event and enriching this meaningful debate, we here at the United Nations believe that everyone should treat others as they would like to be treated, this idea is spread in all major religions, and it is the golden rule set by religions to regulate interaction among human beings." "History has confirmed that ignoring this golden rule leads to violence and conflict, and this has resulted in many atrocities committed in the name of religion, of which religion is innocent, “he added. He stressed that the United Nations joins its voice with the voice of the MWL and calls for the promotion of real and comprehensive peace between East and West through bridges of understanding, we must move from words to actions and start launching educational programs and social initiatives in every neighborhood and every home until we reach everyone. Photo Captions: 1- Sheikh Dr. Al-Issa at the launch of the MWL initiative of "Building bridges of understanding and peace between East and West". 2- The main podium in the United Nations Hall. In the picture, Dr. Al-Issa, the President of the United Nations General Assembly, the Deputy Secretary-General, the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, and the Special Adviser on Multiculturalism and Religions at the United Nations. 3- Part of the international guests attending the launch of the Association's initiative at the United Nations Headquarters. 4. The Grand Mufti of Egypt speaking at the Religious Leaders Platform. 5. Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations in New York, Archbishop Gabriele Caccia. 6. Participation of Mr. Ephraim Yitzchak Mirvis, Chief Rabbi of England.