WELCOMING SPEECH BY THE CHAIRMAN OF IKIM, TUN AHMAD SARJI ABDUL HAMID FOR THE VIRTUAL MOU SIGNING CEREMONY BETWEEN IKIM AND ISLAMIC INSTITUTIONS OF UZBEKISTAN ON
Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh
H.E Mr. Rustam Kasimov
Advisor of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan and Rector of International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan (IIAU)
H.E Mr Ravshan Usmanov
Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan to Malaysia
Datuk Prof. Dr. Azizan Baharuddin
Director-General of IKIM
Mr. Shoazim Minovarov
Director, Centre for Islamic Civilisation (CISC), Uzbekistan
Mr. Shovosil Ziyodov
Director, Imam Bukhari International Scientific Research Centre (IBISRC)
Mr. Bakhrom Mamadiev
Deputy Rector (International Cooperation), International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan (IIAU)
Mr. Shiraz Abdullaev
First Secretary of the Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan to Malaysia
Dr. Mohd Farid Mohd Shahran
Director, Centre for Shariah Law and Politics (SYARAK), IKIM
1. All Praise be to Allah, the Creator and Lord of All the Worlds. May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon His Messenger, Muhammad Sallahu Alaihi Wasallam, whom He sent for the guidance of mankind by taking them to His right path out of the abyss of ignorance and the clutches of disbelief.
It gives me great pleasure to most warmly welcome you to this historic event. This event is a follow up to my fruitful meeting with the Advisor of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan and Rector of International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan (IIAU), H.E Mr. Rustam Kasimov and his delegation on the sideline of the Kuala Lumpur Summit 2019, on the 20th December.
2. Firstly, I would like to congratulate H.E the Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan and Datuk Professor. Dr. Azizan Baharuddin, the Director General of IKIM, as well as members of both teams, who through constructive engagements have led to the pinnacle of their work: namely the production of three documents. The documents are: the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between IKIM and the three Islamic institutions in Uzbekistan, namely: (i) International Islamic Academy of Uzbekistan (IIAU), (ii) Centre for Islamic Civilisation (CISC), and (iii) International Imam Bukhari Centre for Scientific Research (IBISRC). Undoubtedly, these three MoUs will bring diverse experiences and unique ideas to the table that come from our respective countries which differ in size, demography, and political structure.
3. Prior to the signing of these MoUs, the respective institutions have been engaged in the interchange of ideas and discussions. We acknowledge the role of the Republic of Uzbekistan in developing Islamic theology/philosophy and Islamic science to curb the spread and/or dissemination of extremism and the phenomenon of Islamophobia, in various subjects including politics, education, Islamic studies, science and technology. We especially thank the Uzbekistan government for sponsoring IKIM scholar, Dr. Mohd Farid Mohd Shahran to attend the International Scientific Conference on Imam Abu Mansur al-Maturidi in March this year. We also thank the Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan in KL for hosting the video conference between IKIM and the three Institutions on the 23rd of April this year.
4. Through the MoUs, IKIM will learn from Uzbekistan’s diverse culture, and reciprocate from our side with our research and models of Islamic Institutions. Most importantly, exchanges between these 4 participating institutions will offer new perspectives on the challenges common to the Islamic world, and improve our understanding of international, national and regional issues. May I suggest that we explore the possibility of having a joint symposium or seminar in Uzbekistan or in Malaysia on subjects which are of mutual interest, including: Islamic view on terrorism, radicalism, Islam and tolerance, Islam as progressive way of life, understanding the Maqasid Shariah in the context of sustainable development, halal economy, the rights of women, integration of the Muslim community in non-Muslim majority countries, and Islam in a plural society.
5. This event is historic and unprecedented as:
(i) the signing of the MoUs is done on-line;
(ii) Uzbekistan is the first country in the newly independent Islamic countries that IKIM is entering into a cooperation agreement;
(iii) this is the first time in the history of IKIM that it signs more than one MoU with institutions of any country, and on a single occasion.
6. We ask Allah Subhanahu Wa Taala to accept this work, forgive us for our mistakes, and to make this work – our Memorandum of Understanding – valuable assets for the believers of truth and for benefit of the Ummah.
Wabillahi taufiq walhidayah wassalaamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.