JAKARTA, 5th October, 2023 (WAM) -- President Joko Widodo of Indonesia received Judge Mohamed Abdelsalam, the Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Elders, along with a delegation of council members, at the Merdeka Palace on Thursday.
He congratulated the Muslim Council of Elders on the official opening of its office in Indonesia and commended the council for organising the 'Religions and Climate Change' conference for the countries of Southeast Asia.
President Widodo also expressed his support for COP28, which will be hosted by the United Arab Emirates at the end of the year.
During the meeting, President Widodo praised the efforts of the Muslim Council of Elders, under the chairmanship of His Eminence Dr. Ahmed Al-Tayeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, in promoting peace and coexistence. He also recognised the significant initiative of the council in formulating a common vision for the leaders and symbols of religions regarding the issue of climate change and emphasised his strong belief in the importance of interfaith dialogue and expressed his intention to visit the Faith Pavilion at COP28.
President Widodo also expressed his nation's great appreciation for the efforts of President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, in promoting coexistence and human fraternity. He further praised the historical Abu Dhabi Document of Human Fraternity, which was co-signed by His Eminence the Grand Imam and His Holiness Pope Francis in Abu Dhabi in 2019.
He also expressed his delight in the collaboration between the Muslim Council of Elders' branch in Indonesia and academic and religious institutions in the country to disseminate and enhance the values of fraternity and coexistence regionally and globally.
The Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Elders, Judge Mohamed Abdelsalam, and the council's delegation conveyed their appreciation on behalf of the Muslim Council of Elders, under the chairmanship of His Eminence Dr. Ahmed Al-Tayeb, to the nation of Indonesia, its leadership, and people.
The delegation affirmed that Indonesia holds a special place in the hearts of all Muslims, not only due to its vast land and population, but also because of its rich history, unique civilisation, and inspiring tale of stability, development, and coexistence.
The Secretary-General and the council's delegation also expressed their gratitude to President Widodo for embracing the regional branch of the Muslim Council of Elders, which will serve as an effective channel of communication with other Southeast Asian nations.
They also praised Indonesia for hosting the 'Religions and Climate Change' conference and for its leading efforts in addressing climate change.
They further emphasised that the Muslim Council of Elders will closely work with Indonesian governmental, international, and civil institutions, including Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah, among others, to fulfil its mission of promoting peace and spreading the values of dialogue, coexistence, and fraternity.
The delegation of council members included Dr. Muhammad Quraish Shihab, member of the Muslim Council of Elders and former Minister of Religious Affairs of Indonesia, Dr. Ahmed Al-Haddad, member of the Muslim Council of Elders and head of the Fatwa Department in Dubai, Dr. Muhammad Zainul-Majdi, member of the Executive Office of the Muslim Council of Elders, and Dr. Mukhlis Hanafi, Director of the Indonesian branch of the Muslim Council of Elders.