Morocco's Long Tradition of Religious and Spiritual Tolerance Highlighted in Bamako

MAP - Publié le Samedi 20 Février 2021 à 11:10

​Bamako - Morocco is known for its long tradition of religious and spiritual tolerance as evidenced by the harmonious coexistence of mosques, churches and synagogues throughout the national territory, said Friday in Bamako Morocco's ambassador to Mali, Hassan Naciri.
Drawing on this ancient culture, Morocco continues to promote inter-religious and intercultural dialogue and fight against all forms of extremism, said the diplomat, who spoke in his capacity as dean of the diplomatic corps accredited in Bamako at the closing ceremony of the "Other Forum" which took place in the Malian capital under the theme "State, Citizenship, Religions and Secularism: State of Affairs, Challenges and prospects in Mali."

On this occasion, Naciri recalled the publication in January 2016 of the Marrakech Declaration on the rights of religious minorities in the Muslim world, stressing that Islam has been the state religion in Morocco since the eighth century and that HM the King, Head of State and Commander of the Faithful, is "Guarantor of the free practice of religion."

"This centrality of His Majesty the King at the political and religious levels is a singularity of the Kingdom in the Muslim world," he noted.

In this regard, Naciri quoted HM King Mohammed VI who stressed in a speech delivered on the occasion of the visit to Pope Francis to Morocco in March 2019, that "As Commander of the Faithful, I cannot speak of the Land of Islam, as if only Muslims lived there. I am keen to ensure freedom to practise the religions of the Book and I am the guarantor of that freedom. I protect Moroccan Jews as well as Christians from other countries, who are living in Morocco."

Citizenship is managed first of all within the framework of the constitution, public freedoms and the solidarity that membership of a nation-state implies, the diplomat added.

According to him, "the debate is permanently open to rebuild consensus, mend the social fabric and adapt to the demands of contemporary life without denying the fundamental and historical bases of culture that have forged our personality."

Organized as a prelude to the Bamako Forum, scheduled for May in the Malian capital, the "Other Forum" aims to propose solutions to factors that remain important for the balance of the Malian state.

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