Uzair Ahmed, Secretary Tabligh, Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Czech Republic
On 1 December 2023, a unique event was held in the heart of the historic city of Prague, Czech Republic. People from all walks of the city’s diverse life gathered to hear distinguished voices speak for peace at an interreligious forum held at the auspicious Anglo-American University, the country’s oldest private international university.
The historic university hall was filled beyond capacity with 100 audience members, including professors, diplomats, expats, journalists, students, and many others, who joined to hear the imperative message of this forum.
This event, titled “Interreligious Forum – Promoting Peace in Society,” was organised by Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Czech Republic in collaboration with the Anglo-American University’s Islamic Community.
The event commenced with the recitation from the Holy Quran, followed by opening remarks by the National President Jamaat Czech Republic, Kashif Janua Sahib. He expressed his gratitude to the guests for attending and highlighted that the salvation of the world and all true societal progress lie in working towards peace together.
This was followed by an academic lecture on the history of Islam in the Czech lands by Professor Josef Kraus, a researcher and lecturer at Masaryk University.
The forum then had speeches from representatives of the three major Abrahamic faiths, who elucidated key teachings of peace from their respective Holy Books.
The Jewish faith was represented by Mrs Sylvie Wittmanová. The Christian faith’s teachings were presented by Professor Pavol Bargár, a professor at the Protestant Theological Faculty of Charles University in Prague. The Islamic faith was represented by Amir Sahib Jamaat-e-Ahmadiyya Germany, who delivered an address titled “Recognising God – The Key to Unlocking Peace”.
Lastly, an address was delivered by Ibrahim Ikhlaf Sahib, Secretary Outreach and Public Relations Jamaat UK, who had travelled from the UK for this event as an official representative from Markaz. He highlighted the relevance of religion for the world today as the crucial foundation for building peace.
Guests then had the opportunity to ask questions of the panellists.
The evening concluded with a silent prayer. Guests were invited to visit the various exhibitions, including a Holy Quran display, a free literature stall, and a calligraphy stall.
Several guests shared their thoughts on the event, including Mr Jiří Schwarz, the President of the Anglo-American University, Mr Htuann Naung, Chargé d´Affaires of the Embassy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Honourable Grover Joseph Rees, Former General Counsel of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalisation, Mrs Sylvie Wittmanová, the Jewish representative guest speaker, and Professor Pavol Bargár, the Christian representative guest speaker.
A Turkish woman who has been residing in the Czech Republic for 8 years said she has never seen such a beautiful event organised by a Muslim organisation here and the Czech Republic needs more of these events to educate people about Islam.
A few Muslim students said they found out about the event after seeing the Jamaat’s account on social media and immediately decided to attend because it’s rare to see such Islamic events in Prague.
The local media reports particularly complimented the event for its high degree of professionalism and quality of speeches.