Indonesia Calls for More Powerful National Unity to Face the Threat of Radicalism in the Region


?On Thursday, December 11, 2014 the Embassy of Indonesia in cooperation with the Indonesian Muslim Organization Nahdlatul Ulama, Special Branch in Lebanon held a seminar entitled “The Rise of Radicalism in Islam in the Middle East : How to Address the Problem through National Unity Perspective”, at Crowne Plaza Hotel, Hamra Beirut.


The seminar featured discussions on the challenges confronted by the Middle Eastern countries in the face of the rising radicalism in Islam resulted from the conflict in the region, the role of Islam in maintaining peace in the region, and in finding out the views from the speakers on how to address the issue by upholding the principle of national unity.


In addition to the speakers, the seminar was enriched by panelists from Lebanese and Indonesian Islamic Ulamma: Sheikh Hisham Khalifa, Director General of Islamic Endowments of Dar el Fatwa; Sheikh Ahmed Abdul Amer Qabalan, Grand Jaafarite Shiite Mufti; Sheikh Sami Abilmona, Secretary General of Irfan Establishment of Druze Spiritual Council; Sheikh Hassan Abdullah, Chairman of the Administrative Body of the Tajamo Ulamma; Sheikh Abdul Nasser Jabri, Rector of Mahad Ad-Daawa Al-Jamii; and Indonesian Ulamma Sheikh Abdul Malik Madaniy, Secretary General of the Syuro Council of the Nahdlatul Ulamma in Jakarta (Indonesian Muslim Organization).


The seminar also supported by speakers from the Lebanese academician Prof. Ahmad Nousally, Lecturer at the American University of Beirut, and Dr. Mohammad Chamseddine, Political Researcher of the Information International Sal.


Participating in the seminar were several foreign ambassadors and diplomats, religious figures in Beirut and Tripoli, Islamic and general universities students, and Indonesian students in Lebanon. 


Speaking at the opening of the seminar, Indonesian Ambassador to Lebanon Dimas Samodra Rum said that many Muslims that turns into radicalism some are due to their unfortunate political, economic, and socio-cultural circumstances. They feel that they are being treated unfairly by the system, not only politically but also economically. Meanwhile, in the socio-cultural context, many Muslims lost their orientation towards what Islam really are, due to the heavy socio-cultural influence from outside his/her core believe system of Islam. In this situation radicalism seems to offer solution in the form of counter attack to the outside influence that was perceived as attacking them. In that sense, the radicals feel that they are fighting in the name of Islam and Allah to against what they perceived as deviation to the true way of religion of Islam.

Ambassador Rum asserting that the role of national unity as well as unity among the followers of Islamic religion is as something that is really important to deter extremism ideology. If the feeling of unity is prevailed among the followers of Islam in the region, as well as the national cohesiveness within Muslims and other religions in the countries, it can be somehow deterrence for extremism ideology to easily enter the fabric of the society.

He also expressed hope that the seminar will be able to contribute at least one proposed answer among many other proposed solutions to address the problem of radicalism for the lasted peace in the Middle East, as well as in the Islamic world.


Meanwhile all the speakers in the seminar share the same views that moderation, tolerance, open-minded must be uphold and implemented within Muslim society, and also highlighted the importance of a continuous dialogue among Muslim to overcome radicalism. Islam is peace, it’s a religion of peace in which every Muslim must not either hurt, threat, or kill other Muslim for being different because followers of Islam are brothers and unite.

Source : Embassy of Indonesia in Beirut