Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Christians, Muslims and others show solidarity with Egypt


R4BIA in candles

Christians, Muslims and others show solidarity with Egypt in Wellington’s Civic Square

Hundreds of New Zealanders gathered on Friday evening in Wellington's Civic Square together with Christian and Muslim leaders, to express solidarity with the people of Egypt, and to denounce the brutality of the military regime headed by General Abdul Fattah al-Sisi.

Beneath banners bearing R4BIA, the “four-fingered salute” symbolising solidarity with those massacred at the Rabaa al-Adawiya protest camp, the Muslims present prayed the maghrib prayer led by Sheikh Khalid, originally from Egypt, followed by a prayer for the dead, and for Egypt.

“I ask God – the Mighty and Majestic – by His Beautiful Names and Lofty Attributes to spare the blood of the people of Egypt and to remove the calamity, and to grant the people of Egypt security and peace,” he said.


Sheikh Khalid and the crowd make the sign of R4BIA

Father Gerard Burns, a Roman Catholic priest based in Wellington, told the crowd that he was pleased to join with others to remember all those killed in the recent violence in Egypt.

“While I have a special connection and concern for the Christian communities in Egypt, I wanted to pray and to stand up for all the people of Egypt,” he said, pointing out that Muslims are the most impoverished, and bear the brunt of the prevailing distress.

As the crowd pressed closer to hear, both leaders gave speeches about the situation in Egypt.

“Military governments and military repression are no solution to the challenges that Egypt faces,” Father Burns told them.


Father Gerard Burns denounces the repression in Egypt

Sheikh Khalid affirmed that “There is no doubt that all of us will be happy with every effort that spares the blood of any human being and removes this great evil. And there is no doubt that I say: that which is obligatory upon the people of Egypt is that they strive to prevent bloodshed, this is not the time to be angry, it is time to show patience.”

“With all the uncertainty in Egypt these days, the only thing that seems certain is that whoever is on the truth will prevail at the end of the day,” he added. “My sincere request to all people, please don’t be biased against the Muslim of Egypt, think about the poor of the country whose hopes of at least progressing economically are lost.”

After their speeches, others spoke about the situation of Muslims everywhere, noting that they make up the greatest percentage of refugees internationally, and calling for more respect and tolerance, but also for an end to them being driven from their homes. Local activist Nadia Abu-Shanab read a poem by Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, then candles were lit to commemorate the dead, and the many children present arranged them in the shape of the R4BIA symbol.

As Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and atheists mingled together discussing their concerns, their similarities and their differences beneath the symbol of solidarity for the Egyptian protestors, it was clear that peaceful coexistence IS possible, and Sheikh Khalid’s hopes are attainable.

“Egypt deserves better, and I know for sure that she'll get it sooner than we think,” he concluded.


ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Northland By-Election

Supposedly, Winston Peters’ victory in Northland has exposed the simmering dissatisfaction with the government that exists out in the provinces. Yet it remains to be seen whether this defeat will have much significance – and not simply because if and when Labour resumes business as usual in the Northland seat at the next election, Peters’ hold on it could simply evaporate.

On Saturday, National’s electorate vote declined by 7,000 votes, as the 9,000 majority it won last September turned into a 4,000 vote deficit – mainly because Labour supporters followed the nod and wink given by Labour leader Andrew Little, and voted tactically for Peters. In the process, Labour’s vote went down from nearly 9,000 votes six months ago, to only 1,315 on Saturday. More>>

 
 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Climate: Ministers Exclude Emissions From ‘Environment Reporting'

The National Party Government has today revealed that the national environmental report topics for this year will, incredibly, exclude New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

No Retrial: Freedom At Last For Teina Pora

The Māori Party is relieved that the Privy Council has cleared the final legal hurdle for Teina Pora who was wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to prison for 22 years. More>>

ALSO:

Germanwings Crash: Privacy Act Supports Aviation Safeguards In New Zealand

Reports that German privacy laws may have contributed to the Germanwings air crash have prompted New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner to reassure the public that the Privacy Act is no impediment to medical practitioners notifying appropriate authorities to a pilot’s health concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Taranaki Iwi Ngāruahine Settles Treaty Claims For $67.5mln

The settlement includes a $13.5 million payment the government made in June 2013, as well as land in the Taranaki region. The settlement also includes four culturally significant sites, the Waipakari Reserve, Te Kohinga Reserve, Te Ngutu o te Manu and Te Poho o Taranaki. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Funeral In Asia, The Northland By-Election, And News Priorities

Supposedly, New Zealand’s destiny lies in Asia, and that was one of Foreign Minister Murray McCully’s rationales for his bungled reforms at MFAT. OK. So, if that’s the case why didn’t Prime Minister John Key attend the state funeral on Sunday of Singapore’s founding leader Lee Kuan Yew? More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf Satire: Not Flag-Waving; Flag-Drowning

The panel choosing the flag options has no visual artists at all. Now, I’ve kerned the odd ligature in my time and I know my recto from my French curve so I thought I’d offer a few suggestions before they get past their depth. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA Reports: Significant Problems In Police Custody

In releasing two reports today, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has highlighted a number of significant problems with the way in which Police deal with people who are detained in Police cells. More>>

ALSO:

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security: Inquiry Into GCSB Pacific Allegations

The complaints follow recent public allegations about GCSB activities. The complaints, and these public allegations, raise wider questions regarding the collection, retention and sharing of communications data. More>>

ALSO:

TPPA Investment Leak: "NZ Surrender To US" On Corporates Suing Governments

Professor Jane Kelsey: ‘As anticipated, the deal gives foreign investors from the TPPA countries special rights, and the power to sue the government in private offshore tribunals for massive damages if new laws, or even court decisions, significantly affected their bottom line’. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: The Myth Of Steven Joyce

Gordon Campbell: The myth of competence that’s been woven around Steven Joyce – the Key government’s “Minister of Everything” and “Mr Fixit” – has been disseminated from high-rises to hamlets, across the country... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news