UK Muslims hail call for peace

8:02pm UK, Saturday September 24, 2011

A leading Islamic scholar has received a standing ovation from thousands of British Muslims as he denounced terrorism and called for peace.

Wembley Arena in northwest London was a sea of colourful robes as around 12,000 Muslims gathered to give their backing to a global declaration of peace.

Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri, the founder of the Minhaj-ul-Quran International movement, was repeatedly applauded.

During his speech in which he said the "terrible" attacks of 9/11 had distorted perceptions of Islam over the past decade.

"In spite of statements and memorandum and condemnation of the terror, the voices of the 99% true, peace-loving Muslims have not been heard," he said.

"They have been drowned out by the clamour and the noise of extremists.

"Islam has nothing to do with any act of terrorism. We reject every act of extremism and terrorism unconditionally."

The conference heard a series of lengthy and impassioned speeches, some in Arabic, from Islamic scholars denouncing terrorism and extremism.

There were also prayers for peace from a range of representatives from different religions including the Bishop of Barking, the Rt Rev David Hawkins.

Jewish rabbis and representatives from the Hindu, Buddhist and Sikh faiths also gave prayers.

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