Islamic and Christian Leaders Talk in Egypt

CAIRO, Oct 29, 01 ( - Islamic and Christian leaders gathered in Egypt on Sunday to discuss the current geopolitical situation and the difference between Arab and Islamic cultures and the West.

The two-day Islamic-Christian Dialogue included representatives of the Swiss-based International Church Council and the Saudi-based International Islamic Forum for Dialogue, among others.

"The hypothesis of the clash of civilizations must not be allowed to become a self-fulfilling prophecy," said Tarek Metry, from the Christian church council. "Today, the world is burning ... each of us (is here) to pour a little water to put out the fire," added Hamed bin Ahmed el-Refaai, head of the Islamic forum.

"Many persons have genuine experiences of repression in the context of the current world order," said William Vendley, secretary-general of the UN's World Conference on Religion and Peace.

"The answer to terrorism ... is sought by addressing the issues that breed terrorism," Metry of International Church Council said.

Other participants in the conference, which ended on Monday, are Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa, Egypt's State Mufti Nasr Farid Wassel, and a representative of the Vatican.

Catholic World News Service - Daily News Briefs
29. oktober 2001