Terror strikes no link to religion

National 3 minutes, 4 seconds


THE recent acts of violence perpetrated by extremist and terror groups in some parts of the world have nothing to do with religion, His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam said in a titah or royal speech during the second day of the 25th ASEAN and Related Summits in Myanmar.

The monarch said “people need to understand that these recent acts of violence have nothing to do with any religion, let alone, Islam”.

In a press statement yesterday, the Prime Minister’s Office quoted His Majesty as saying “Brunei encourages inter-faith dialogues among cultures, religion and civilisations that generate mutual trust and understanding”. This as the beloved ruler said he continued to support Malaysia’s Global Movement of Moderates.

His Majesty said Brunei shared the concern of the international community on the rise of violence and brutality committed by terrorist and extremist organisations in the Middle East.

“We strongly believe in the need to combat terrorism in all its form and reject extremism, as this is not a localised problem, but one that could have its roots from and effects extended to other regions,” the monarch said during the meeting with fellow world leaders.

This concern, the monarch said, should be addressed in a comprehensive manner by identifying the underlying factors that support terrorism and lead to radicalism.

His Majesty supported the joint statement of East Asian leaders’ response to the spread of Ebola during the 9th East Asia Summit (EAS) at the Myanmar International Convention Center (MICC).

During the summit, His Majesty said that much can be done to control the disease, including the sharing of data and best practices and through methods such as regional alert and response system for surveillance, monitoring and investigation.

The monarch noted that the Ebola outbreak has caused much devastation in West Africa and is now considered a potential threat to international peace, security and economy, requiring urgent attention that needs to be collectively addressed regional, national and international levels.

His Majesty said he hoped to see more concrete efforts to address the outbreak and fully welcomed a joint statement on such.

During the summit, His Majesty higlighted that last year, the main focus of the meeting was on food security, where a study group was established to look into fisheries and maritime resources.

He encouraged relevant officials to translate the recommendations into actions as he believed these initiatives supplemented the work regionally and globally.

His Majesty also said that a similar approach to East Asia’s work towards sustainable future of its people should be considered for securing peaceful and stable environment in the region.

In this, he believed the EAS workshop on security has been useful as it has positive impacts on how security arrangements evolved.

His Majesty said that he would be happy to hear more about its outcomes in the future as the regional group work towards an ASEAN-led regional security architecture in the Asia-Pacific region.

Yesterday His Majesty also attended the second ASEAN-US meeting where he met with US President Barack Obama and discussed various issues including the Ebola outbreak, terrorism and climate change. The monarch praised the good cooperation between Brunei and US.

Amongst them was the Brunei-US initiative English Language Enrichment Programme.

His Majesty also expressed Brunei’s appreciation for US support in developing the Sultanate’s youths, particularly the youth leaders initiatives and the Fulbright Scholarship programme.

Brunei, said His Majesty, has embarked on various initiatives such as the Heart of Borneo to preserve the environment and biodiversity as well as address climate change.

His Majesty encourages cooperation with the United States and other international partners to continue working together on this initiative.

The Brunei Times