IPOH, Nov 20 — The Sultan Perak Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah said today the world is less peaceful today compared to 10 years ago due to the widening gap in wealth and tranquillity among countries that have them, and those that don’t.
Citing the Global Peace Index Report for 2017 in his speech at the Fourth World Conference on Islamic Thought and Civilisation, the state monarch said there has been a 247 per cent rise in the number of deaths caused by terrorism over the past decade.
“Terrorism represents a substantial and intensifying threat to international harmony, spreading fear and mistrust, and inflicting needless suffering on communities and individuals.
“There are no signs that the problem is diminishing,” he said in his speech at the Casuarian Meru Hotel here.
Another major factor contributing to the 10-year decline is the number of severe refugee crises brought about by domestic conflict, political terror, and religious persecution, the sultan added.
“Over 11 million people have been displaced from their homes by the war in Syria during the past six years.
“Meanwhile, the Rohingya crisis continues to worsen, in what has been described by the United Nations as a ‘textbook example of ethnic cleansing’.
“Shocking satellite images have revealed hundreds of Rohingya villages burned to the ground, and Rohingya Muslim people, 58 per cent of them are children, fleeing targeted military violence in Myanmar in their thousands,” he said.
Sultan Nazrin pointed out that a significant problem contributing to greater world conflict is the inequality in peace between the most and least peaceful countries.
“We are not only facing longstanding problem of the unequal distribution of wealth between the richest and the poorest in the world.
“But we are also now witnessing the increasingly unequal distribution of global peace between those countries that have, and those countries that have not,” he said.
Sultan Nazrin also said over half of the 10 least peaceful countries in the world are Muslim-majority countries which includes Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Yemen.
“The lives of people in these countries have been profoundly damaged by war and political turmoil.
“The goal of achieving global peace where a peace, which extends to every citizen, in every country of the world is clearly still a long way from being realised,” he said.
Sultan Nazrin argued that a truly peaceful world is one characterised by two important Islamic values which is “amanah” (trust) and “ta’ayush” (inclusivity).
“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 also to establish a more trusting and inclusive world community, in which each and every individual is valued and respected,” he said.