The head of the one of the world’s largest Muslim organizations paid an unprecedented visit to the site of the Auschwitz extermination camp on Thursday, where he participated in remembrance prayers for the Jewish victims of the Nazi Holocaust.
Dr. Muhammad al-Issa — the secretary-general of the Mecca-based Muslim World League (MWL) — joined with survivors of the Holocaust in paying his respects at the camp as the world prepares for the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on Jan. 27.
“To be here, among the children of Holocaust survivors and members of the Jewish and Islamic communities, is both a sacred duty and a profound honor,” al-Issa said. “The unconscionable crimes to which we bear witness today are truly crimes against humanity. That is to say, a violation of us all, an affront to all of God’s children.”
Al-Issa has established the MWL as a leading Muslim partner for dialogue with Judaism and other faiths since he was appointed to take over the Saudi-backed organization in 2016.
In May 2018, al -Issa paid a public visit to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC, where he strongly condemned Holocaust denial.
And in an extensive interview with The Algemeiner earlier that same year, he firmly rejected those who present the Islamic faith as a license to engage in sectarian persecution.
Doing so “negates the tradition of the Creator Almighty, who created His universe in such a way that it contains diversity and variety,” al-Issa said.