India A Living Example Of Peaceful Co-Existence, Says Iranian President

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who arrived in India on Thursday for a three-day visit during which he is slated to address a gathering at the Mecca Masjid here today and hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the national capital tomorrow, has said that there can be no military solution to conflicts.

Rouhani said Iran wishes to have brotherly relations with all the Islamic nations and the countries of the region, including India.

The visiting Iranian leader called for unity between Shias and Sunnis, and described India as a living example of peaceful co-existence of people of different religions and ethnicities.

“India is a living museum of different ethnicities and religions peacefully co-existing. This process has going on for centuries. Shia, Sunnis, Sufis, Hindus, Sikhs, and others are living together. They together built this country and built their civilisation,” he said while addressing Muslim leaders and scholars belonging to different Islamic schools of thought here on Thursday, the first day of his visit.

In his half an hour long address delivered in Persian, the Iranian President called for unity among the Shias and Sunnis while blaming the West for the discord among various sects of Muslims. He alleged that the West created a rift among Muslims by instigating certain groups and outfits.

“They portray themselves as Islamic groups but we call them ‘takfiri’. All those who follow ‘qibla’ (the direction in which Muslims offer namaz) and believe that there is no God but Allah and Mohammad is His last messenger are living together as brothers,” he said.

Claiming that Iran in recent years made efforts to end conflicts and bloodshed in the region, he said that his country plans to enhance brotherhood with all Muslim nations and countries of the region.

“Iran is not seeking any discord with the other Muslim countries who have age-old relations with us. We believe that in case of differences, a bullet is the not the solution. Dialogue and logic are the tools at our disposal to overcome the differences. There is no military solution. The solution has to be political,” said Rouhani.

The Iranian leader said his country was ready to help countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen.

He said the enemies of Islam were trying to portray Islam as a religion of violence. “The fact is that Islam is a religion of moderation, tolerance, and forgiveness,” he said extensively quoting from the Quran and the sayings of Prophet Mohammad.

Rouhani also lashed out at the West for targeting the culture of the eastern countries and adopting an unfair attitude on the question of sharing scientific knowledge and technology.

“Tyranny and oppression were the root causes of the conflicts in the world today. Oppressed nations have a right to defend themselves,” he said.

Source: times now