IPOH – The Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah said that the world is now less peaceful compared to 10 years ago, according to the 2017 Global Peace Index by the Institute for Economics and Peace.
Sultan Nazrin noted that there had been a 247 per cent increase in the number of deaths caused by terrorism over the past decade, and ‘there are no signs that the problem is diminishing’
“Terrorism represents a substantial and intensifying threat to international harmony, spreading fear and mistrust and inflicting needless suffering on communities and individuals,” he said in his keynote address at the Fourth World Conference on Islamic Thought and Civilisation (WCIT 2017), here, today.
The two-day conference themed ‘Global Peace’ held from today is organised by Universiti Sultan Azlan Shah, with the participants coming from more than 15 countries.
Sultan Nazrin said another major factor contributing to the overall 10-year decline was the number of severe refugee crises which had developed over the past decade, brought about by domestic conflict, political terror and religious persecution.
Citing Myanmar, Sultan Nazrin said the Rohingya crisis continued to worsen in what had been described by the United Nations as a ‘textbook example of ethnic cleansing’.
“It is surely hard to reconcile such figures and images with the notion that our world has grown even marginally more peaceful over the past year,” he said.
The Perak Sultan also pointed out that the world today not only faced the longstanding problem of unequal distribution of wealth between the richest and poorest in the world, but was also witnessing the increasingly unequal distribution of global peace.
“Our goal of achieving global peace, that is, peace which extends to every citizen in every country of our world is clearly still a long way from being realised,” he said.
Sultan Nazrin also argued that ‘a truly peaceful world is one characterised by two important Islamic values which is trust (amanah) and inclusivity, that is, to learn to live together by showing mercy’.
“As we pursue our collective goal of global peace, we must keep these two principles always in mind, seeking not only to eradicate conflict but to establish a more trusting and inclusive world community in which each and every individual is valued and respected.
“I would also like to suggest that trust and inclusivity, as well as being the ultimate goals of global peace, are also the means by which peace might be achieved,” he said.
Commenting on the WCIT 2017, Sultan Nazrin believed that the event could help lead the way in the creation of a more trusting, inclusive and, ultimately, peaceful global community.