REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, BOGOR -- People's Consultative Assembly (MPR) Speaker Zulkifli Hasan officially opened the Islamic Unity Conference in Bogor, West Java, on Friday.
The conference was attended by hundreds of scholars from several countries in the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) region and the Middle East.
"The differences that occur among people should not be questioned. The Islamic scholars should unite Muslims to become an economic power for the nation," Zulkifli said here on Friday.
The current challenge of Muslims is how to reconcile differences among people. Muslims should not be divided due to their differences.
Indonesia consists of various races and religions and continues to maintain their unity in the principles of diversity.
Science and technology are key to becoming an advanced nation.
"Muslims should master science and technology to develop their nation," he remarked.
Furthermore, the trust that exists between people and their leaders will become a strength. As a result, Muslims will not easily divided.
"The Qur'an and Sunnah are the next key. If Muslims hold on to these keys, Islam will become a world power," he stated.
The conference was organized by a number of Islamic religious outreach organizations in ASEAN and the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Sudan, and others.
Chairman of the Committee, Yusuf Usman Baisa said that Indonesia in cooperation with Islamic religious outreach organization of ASEAN countries and the Middle East had conducted the forum.
"The forum is intended to unite Muslims by eliminating the idea of radicalism, extremism and terrorism," he said.
The forum was aimed to promote Islam as rahmatan lil alamin (a blessing for the universe). Radicalism, terrorism and extremism are not ideas of Islamic teachings.
"Through the seminar, we would like to promote Islam as a blessing for the universe,' said Yusuf.
The conference was by 120 scholars as representatives of Islamic organizations in Indonesia, 80 scholars from ASEAN countries, as well as scholars from the Middle East and Gulf countries, such as Bahrain, Qatar, Sudan, and Kuwait.