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Leading Muslim Scholar and Ayatollah, Justice (R) Hassan Raza Ghadeeri Appreciate the Role of IIFWP in Global Peace and Religious Harmony
Zulfiqar A. Kazmi, Ph.D, IIFWP-Pakistan President
Pakistan
April 14, 2003

Every year according to the Islamic lunar calendar, during the month of Muharram, Muslims all over the world commemorate the memory of Ashura with vigour. Muslim scholars and religious leaders pay tributes to Imam Hussain (A).

Muhammadia Centre, a leading Muslim Community Organization of Northern Virginia arranged several events and meetings during this time. Ayatollah Hassan Raza Ghadeeri, a former Chief Justice of the Iranian Province, Baluchistan, and Dr. Zulfiqar A. Kazmi, President of the IIFWP Pakistan Chapter presided over those meetings. On the day of Ashura, grandson of the Holy Prophet (S) Imam Hussain, while suffering from extreme thirst, was brutally martyred by the swords of the army of Yazid ibn Mu?awiya on Saturday the tenth of Muharram in the year sixty-first after Hijrah in Karbala, Iraq.

His son Imam Ali Zayn-ul-Abidin (A) prepared his decapitated body, after being left in the field for three days, and buried him in the fields of Karbala, Iraq where his shrine stands today. Imam Hussain is best known for his revolt against the status quo. In that time, the socio-political situation had deteriorated to an extreme and intolerable state. Fundamental measures needed to be taken. Imam Hussain (A) sacrificed his life to save mankind and human rights.

While addressing the Muslim Community during these events, Dr. Kazmi said, "About 1400 years before, Imam Hussain sacrificed his life to protect the dignity of human beings. Today when Muslims are commemorating Ashura, the people of Iraq are facing a similar situation because of Saddam?s regime. The Iraqi people can get inspiration from the way of Imam Hussain, and could now bring peace to their lives.

Dr. Kazmi then informed the audience that IIFWP had recently launched a successful Middle East Peace Initiative (MEPI) in Washington, D.C from February 27-March 2, 2003. He also spoke about the IIFWP World Muslim Leaders Summit that took place in England and Indonesia. Dr. Kazmi said, "IIFWP is taking most sincere and constructive steps for universal peace through its founding vision according to the teachings of Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon." He said that the Chairman of IIFWP, Rev. Dr.Chung Hwan Kwak, had clearly mentioned while addressing the participants at the Middle East Peace Conference, "Religions, both through their leaders and followers, are to set their sights on God?s original ideal. Surely God?s ideal is peace and the practice of true love, not conflict. This is also true of the founding prophets and leading figures of these traditions. They always taught love, not conflict. For this reason, leaders and followers of each of these traditions must reflect on their roots, their origin. That means to return to the founding ideals expressed in the core teachings and practices of our founders and prophets, including Moses, Jesus and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)."

In his sermons, Ayatollah Justice (R) Hassan Raza Ghadeeri, appreciated the role of IIFWP and expressed his deep respect for its founder. Ayatollah (R) Justice Ghadeeri also took a short tour of the Washington Times Newspaper and attended a luncheon meeting hosted by Mr. Antonio Betancourt, Secretary General of IIFWP, North America.

Dr. Kazmi and Allama Dr. Sakhawat Hussain, Chairman of the Al-Mahdi Foundation in New York was also present. Mr. Betancourt shared with the guests about the worldwide activities of IIFWP and its founding vision and principles.

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