In his opening address to the international conference on the rights of religious minorities in Islamic countries, currently held in Marrakech, the Monarch said Morocco has always been an outstanding model of cultural coexistence and interaction between Islam and other religions, particularly Judaism and Christianity.
“One of the glorious pages in this history was the emergence of the Moroccan-Andalusian civilization, which brought together various communities”, said the Moroccan Sovereign, recalling that large numbers of Muslims had moved from Andalusia to settle in the country which has been hosting a Jewish community since the pre-Islamic era.
The Jewish community in Morocco was never treated by Muslims as a minority, as its members were actively involved in all fields of activity and were present at all levels of society, stressed King Mohammed VI, noting that Moroccans uphold the same tradition towards the Christians, respecting their right to perform their religious rites.
“As Commander of the Faithful and defender of the faith, I am committed to protecting the rights of Muslims and non-Muslims alike”, said the Sovereign, affirming that Moroccan Jews enjoy the same constitutional & political rights as their fellow Muslim citizens, and play a key role in the country’s economy.
“We, in the Kingdom of Morocco, see no reason for denying religious minorities any of their rights. We do not tolerate a violation of this kind being perpetrated in the name of Islam, nor do we tolerate any Muslim being involved in such an infringement”, stressed the Monarch, underlining Morocco’s religious policy which focuses on preventing any distorted interpretation of the holy Quran.
The Moroccan Sovereign also stressed the importance of
common values to nurture religious tolerance and counter extremism and radical ideologies.
The Marrakech international conference on the rights of religious minorities in Muslim countries (Jan.25-27) brings together eminent religious leaders from Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Egypt and many other Islamic countries.
The conference, which is expected to issue a declaration on the protection of religious minorities in the Muslim world, comes to counter the Islamic fanatic groups such as the Isis lunatics who are wreathing havoc in the world, threatening the region’s stability and undermining the true image of Islam, a religion of peace.