Hawzah News Agency (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) - He reiterated this during a special meeting with 37 ulama and Muslim intellectuals at his office in Putra Jaya, said Malaysian Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Dr Mujahid Yusuf Rawa at a press conference held after the two-hour event.
Mujahid said during the meeting, Mahathir shared the government’s aspirations to make Malaysia a model of the best contemporary Muslim nation in the world.
“The world often connects Islam with violence, war and economic weaknesses.
"In this matter, Tun Mahathir wants the ulama and Muslim intellectuals to make use of the openness of the Pakatan Harapan government to show a more compassionate Islam,” he said.
Among those who were present at the meeting were Perlis Mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin, Islamic Centre lecturer in the Faculty of Theology, Oxford University Datuk Dr Muhammad Afifi Al-Akiti, former president of the Ulama Association of Malaysia (PUM) Ustaz Ahmad Awang and president of the Malaysian Consultative Council for Islamic Organisation (Mapim) Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid.
During the meeting, the Malaysian premier discussed various matters including how to empower Islamic institutions beyond religious rituals but to also include science and economics.
Mujahid said Mahathir also wanted more focus to be given to religious extremists, especially in the issue of branding fellow Muslims as infidels, as well as on the government’s commitment to combat extremist ideologies.
He said the Ministry will subsequently hold monthly follow-up meetings with smaller groups which would be more focused on certain issues than the one the prime minister had on Tuesday.