Morocco an Example of Protecting Religious Minorities, US Expert Says

Washington – Morocco is “an example of a country that protects the rights of religious minorities,” stressed Charles Haynes, founding director of the Religious Freedom Center based in Washington, on Thursday.“Morocco is often cited as an example of an Islamic state that protects the rights of Christians, Jews, and other religious minorities,” Haynes said in an article published by the American Journal Gazette Extra.He noted that the Kingdom has just organized a “historic” conference on the protection of religious freedom in Islamic countries, featuring the participation of prominent Muslim clerics from around the world. He further noted that the final declaration of the conference, held from January 25 to 27 in Marrakech, reaffirmed the principles of the Charter of Medina, which was drafted at the time of Prophet Muhammed, and “guarantees religious freedom to all regardless of their faith and beliefs.”Haynes, who is also the vice president of the Newseum Institute, noted that the Marrakech Declaration has called for “broad movement for the just treatment of religious minorities in Muslim countries and to raise awareness as to their rights.”“The declaration of Marrakech is the perfect illustration of the true message of Islam, which supports religious freedom,” he said. He added that the fight against religious extremism, particularly among young people, is the challenge that it must now confront through “social reforms and peace efforts.”The founding director of the Religious Freedom Center also noted that Americans need to “hear the authentic voice of Islam.”“At a time when Islam is coopted by terrorists and demonized by anti-Muslim groups, Americans need to hear the true voice of Islam.”Held under the High Patronage of King Mohammed VI, the Marrakech conference was attended by numerous personalities, including ministers, religious scholars, and representatives of other religions concerned with the status of minorities in Islamic countries, and representatives from international organizations.

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