Thursday, April 20, 2006

Islam is "in perfect dynamism" with democracy

(Pix: Putrajaya Mosque - from across the Putrajaya Lake)

Islam is "in perfect dynamism" with democracy and human rights, according to a recent study conducted for the Dutch government, Zaman Online reported.

After three years of research, the Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR) in the Netherlands concluded that Islam neither conflicts with democracy, nor human rights nor Dutch values.

The WRR report, titled "Dynamism in Islamic activism", said that European countries must support the Islamic movements that embrace democracy, like the Muslim brotherhood in Egypt and Hezbollah in Lebanon.

It also recommended that Europe communicates with and offers aid to the Hamas-led Palestinian government.

"Contrary to the common belief, Islam has no problem accepting democracy and human rights...Instead of exporting democracy to Muslim countries, democratic attempts harmonious with their own traditions and cultures must be supported," the Council advised European governments in its report.

The study, which also covered the Islamic movement in Europe, said that tensions between Muslim countries and the West are mainly caused by a lack of communication and dialogue.

"This study is indeed a step towards opening a more serious dialogue with Islam and curbing extremism irrespective of its source," said Marzouk Abdullah Awlad, professor of Islamic Studies in the Amsterdam Free University.

"Islam is a religion that interacts with its surrounding environment and adapts with different circumstances with no complications," he added.

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