Prime Minster Sheikh Hasina has urged Muslim countries to join their hands to launch a concerted campaign to eliminate terrorism.
"Everybody who believes in peace should unite against terrorism," she told a mammoth rally of Islamic religious leaders and scholars on occasion of the 42nd founding anniversary of Islamic Foundation at Suhrawardi Udyan yesterday.
She thanked Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz for his efforts and role in curbing terrorism and militancy, adding that Bangladesh would remain beside Saudi Arabia in its initiative to fight against terrorism and violent extremism in the name of Islam.
She called on Imams, Alem, Ulema and Mashayekh to preach the real essence of Islam to the common people so that no one indulges in terrorism and militancy.
"You will have to remain alert so that no one can cause harm to the holy region," she said.
“Bangladesh is a Muslim majority nation, but people of other religions are living here in peace and harmony, which is the true spirit of the Islam,” she said.
Hasina said there was a propaganda against Awami League that Islam would not exist in Bangladesh if it came to power and such propaganda intensified after the assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with most of his family members on August 15, 1975.
“However, it was those who grabbed power illegally after 1975 who made a business out of Islam,” she said.
“They reintroduced liquor licences, although Bangabandhu had banned gambling, liquor and racing. They patronised terrorism and militancy,” she said.
Murdering innocents a terrible sin
Vice President of two holy mosques in Mecca and Madina Dr Mohammad Bin Nasser Bin Mohammad Al Khuzaim, and Imam and Preacher of the Prophet's Mosque Abdulmehsin bin Mohammad Bin Abdul Rahman Al-Qasim also spoke at the rally.
Dr Khuzaim said the Saudi government is making constant effort to uphold the dignity of Muslims across the world. In view of this an institution has already been established to expand Islamic cultural education across the world and correction of the people.
“The killing of innocent people is a terrible sin in Islam,” Dr Khuzam said.
“Islam never allows a Muslim to kill another Muslim, or an innocent person of any other religion. In Islam, it is the duty of a Muslim to protect the lives and property of the people of other religion in his country,” he said.
"The killers of innocent people can never belong to Islam," the vice president of the holy mosques said adding all Muslims across the world must stand against terrorism and militancy.
He praised Bangladesh's efforts in containing terrorism, saying it was one of the countries to successfully spearhead anti-militancy campaigns.
Imam and Preacher of the Prophet's Mosque Abdulmehsin bin Mohammad Bin Abdul Rahman Al-Qasim hoped that their visit to Bangladesh would strengthen relation of his country with Bangladesh under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“Islam is a religion of peace. It teaches us to respect others,” he said.
Later, he led a munajat seeking peace and prosperity of the Muslim Ummah.