Averroè Center in favor of interreligious dialogue and women’s rights


By Martina Margaglio

Yesterday in Rome, a magnificent evening was celebrated on the occasion of the third edition of the “Ambassador for Peace” Award organized by “Averroè” Study Center. The objective of the initiative is to strengthen dialogue and cooperation between Europe and the Arab world, promoting new perspectives for peace, security, development and respect for human rights, following in the footsteps of Pope Francis’ visit to Abu Dhabi.

The event was attended by academics, experts, journalists and representatives of civil society, united by the commitment to consolidate cultural relations between the two shores of the Mediterranean. The partner of “Averroè” Study Center to organize the “Ambassador for Peace” Award was once again the Moroccan Women Association in Italy-Acmid, that has been working for the integration of immigrant women for more than twenty years, offering support and assistance to victims of violence and discrimination.

A special prize the international cooperation was awarded to the memory of María Pilar Buzzetti, one of the 8 Italian victims in the plane crash that took place on March 10 in Ethiopia and which took the lives of 157 people. María Pilar, very committed to the African continent, cooperated with the World Food Program. The recognition, which was given to her mother Anna Rita Giammetta, aims to honor the mission of “Ambassador for Peace” that Maria Pilar carried out with such altruism and courage.

An “Ambassador of Peace” is certainly Pope Francis, an extraordinary builder of bridges of dialogue and “Human Fraternity” whose commitment is reflected in the historic document that the Pontiff signed in Abu Dhabi with the Grand Imam of Egypt’s Al Azhar Mosque, Sheikh Ahmed Al Tayeb. During the ceremony, the most significant parts of the document concerning the fight against extremism, interreligious dialogue and women’s rights were also discussed.

The “Human Fraternity” promoted by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al Azhar has as its dominant character its inter-religiousness. In fact, the document commits all religions, and not only Christianity and Islam, to work together against the violence and the terrorism generated by the exploitation of religions for political purposes. The implicit reference, underlined Souad Sbai, is the fundamentalism promoted by the Muslim Brotherhood and the States that sponsor the Association: Emirs Al Thani’s Qatar and the Erdogan’s Turkey.

The Grand Imam of Al Azhar signed the document on behalf of the majority of the Islamic world, not only Arab, that wants to put an end to an obscurantist past and that wants to walk towards a better future, represented by the goal of “Human Fraternity” and reaffirmed by Pope Francis.

In this context, Souad Sbai reiterated that the main duty of the “Ambassadors for Peace” representing the “Averroè” Studies Center is to keep the debate alive and spread a greater awareness of the nature and objectives of extremism that has crossed the borders of the Middle East and that also aimed at the “conquest of the West”.

The recent publication in France of the book entitled “Qatar Papers” illustrates in great detail the implementation of the expansionist design created by the Muslim Brotherhood in Europe, including Italy, achieved through a vast network of mosques, cultural associations and radical imams financed by Qatar.

On the issue of women’s rights, Souad Sbai noted that the document on “Human Fraternity” defines the recognition of political rights, the right to education and the right to work as “essential”. Following the line of the document, the Imam of Al Azhar has continued taking steps forward towards the full recognition of Muslim women’s rights, expressing himself critically about polygamy and calling for the adoption of ad hoc laws and measures on behalf of the feminine component.

In this regard, Souad Sbai also pointed out the need to promote girls’ and young women’s access to the education system. The poor female schooling is one of the causes of the implantation of the ideology of the Muslim Brothers in the family environment both in the Middle East and in Europe. In Italy, for example, according to official data reported by the Ministry of Education, two out of three Muslim girls do not finish compulsory education and seven out of ten Moroccan girls, from 15 to 29 years old, neither study nor work.

Interreligious dialogue, fight against extremism and women’s rights: these are crucial issues that were addressed during the ceremony held yesterday and that will continue to represent the heart of the mission carried out by the “Ambassadors for Peace” and “Averroè” High Studies Center.






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