No matter the person's ethnic group, gender, and nationality, they must be honored and not be discriminated against.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - All religions elevate human dignity and aim to realize quality humans who are prosperous and peaceful, according to the Grand Imam of Jakarta's Istiqlal Mosque, Nasaruddin Umar.

"It is time the Istiqlal (Mosque) and religious figures unite hand in hand to realize a safe and harmonious world order," Umar said during an international panel discussion on Islamophobia and antisemitism in the world, held via teleconferencing from Istiqlal Mosque here on Wednesday.

He added that he is keen to prevent religious and ethnic conflicts.

Umar further said that Islam emphasizes unity rather than differences, as the Almighty God, by His prerogative, has honored all sons and descendants of Adam regardless of their faith.

"No matter the person's ethnic group, gender, and nationality, they must be honored and not be discriminated against," he stressed.

Umar highlighted that Islam believes that “there is no compulsion in religion,” as conveyed by verse 256 of Sura Al-Baqara in the Holy Quran.

Islam also encourages humans to unite by focusing on the aspects they have in common instead of being divided by the aspects they differ on, he added.

"(We also need to consider) how to realize the best people that will start from Indonesia for the future," he said.

Umar then lauded the cooperation between the mosque and the Leimena Institute in organizing the international panel discussion.

Besides the grand imam, Istiqlal Mosque's director of ulema education, Ahmad Thib Raya, and scholar and former foreign affairs minister Alwi Shihab took part in the event as speakers.

Director of Muslim-Jewish relations at the American Jewish Committee, Ari Gordon, and Indonesian representative to the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights, Yuyun Wahyuningrum, also joined the discussion.

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Translator: Sean Filo Muhamad, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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