Your highness, jabber sabah…… Emir of Kuwait, your majesty, by wzi17160

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									 (Transcript of President Karzai’s Verbal Speech in the World Islamic Economic Forum
                                       in Kuwait.)



Besmillah Rahman Rahim. Alhamdullah Rabul Alamin, Wa Salat-u- Wa Salam-u- Allah
Khatm-u- Nabieen.

Your Highness, Sheikh al-Ahmad al-Jabir al-Sabah, Emir of Kuwait, Your Majesty King
Abdullah, Excellencies, Presidents of Senegal and Bosnia, Your Highness Heads of
government, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen! Salam-u-Alaikum,

I am glad to be here today, Your Majesty, Your Highnesses, I am very grateful to His
Highness Emir of Kuwait and the people of Kuwait for providing us this extremely
important opportunity of exchange of views on the matter so important to the Muslim
World, to the Umma that of economic well-being among us. Both His Highness and His
Majesty in their remarks gave us (inaudible) and guidance on how we see the
improvement towards future. His Majesty pointed to some facts, facts that give us the
reality of opportunities and weakness of the difficulties that we have. I will go into detail
on the platform that His Majesty laid for us. Most of the world’s needed rich mineral and
underground resources are in the Muslim world. A rich history of highly-developed
civilization, art, literature and science that flourished in the past of the Islamic world,
very important our religion-- Islam encourages trade, renovation, investment, enterprise
and curiosity. We have a market here of 1.4 billion people, and as His Majesty referred
to-- a very young work force (inaudible) five hundred fifty million people, and yet ladies
and gentlemen! We have the worst problems, the worst literacy rate of men and women,
the worst infant mortality rate, the worst unemployment, the worst food shortages,
economic underdevelopment, conflict and worst of all the misperception in the rest of the
world about us. What has kept us where we are now? And what are the opportunities that
we have to improve our lives and as the main topic of today’s conference is “how to play
globally”.

In my view, if we can concentrate that long-neglected attention on scientific education
and the promotion of our youths will be one major step. Islamic World has for long
neglected concentration on science, on training our school boys and girls, (inaudible)
years on practical science and teach them how to handle the mechanical things.

I have my own experience, in my school in Kabul in Afghanistan in 1960s and 70s,
which was a very good school of a very high standard; we were concentrating so much on
theory, that on graduation from my school of the twelfth grade when I went to study in
India, in a remote part of India. In the first year of art, I found myself to be much ahead in
theory of both physics, chemistry, sciences, this that, history of the students in my
classroom, much ahead of them, but as soon as we entered the laboratory, as soon as we
began to work on chemicals and substances, I was illiterate, the same applies to much of
us in the Islamic world till today. Therefore, my first suggestion here is that we as
Muslims concentrate on scientific education. Second, extremely important, we have half
of our workforce-- our women-- not in the workplace, neither concentrating on educating
them, nor have we encouraged their participation in the workplace. Our regions are either
in conflict or rivalry, and we have an enemy within ourselves, some of us using the name
of our sacred religion, kill and destroy us, stop us from getting an education. Today, as I
am speaking to you, in Afghanistan and in Pakistan, I don’t know about the rest of us,
probably that is also the case in Darfur, probably that is also the case in other parts. In
Afghanistan and Pakistan in the border regions of both countries, extremists are
preventing boys and girls from going to school, there are at least three hundred thousand
Afghan children today, at least maybe there are many more who had an opportunity to go
to school five years ago, who don’t have an opportunity to go to school today, and now
that is five years (inaudible), that who was seven, and good for first year of school is
today twelve.
Only in the past year in Swat valley in Pakistan according to some estimates, sixty
thousand girls were forced out of school and college. Extremists and terrorists that is one
example of how they (inaudible) Muslims and the progress Muslims can achieve. Fourth:
we have not put our energies together, we have not worked on connectivity among us,
from Africa, to the Middle East, to the Gulf, to west Asia, to Central Asia, to South Asia,
to East Asia all the way to Indonesia, there is a massive market availability and variety of
abilities.

Some of excel in agricultural products, like some countries in the Middle East, like some
countries in south and central Asia, Afghanistan is one example, some of us excel in
knowledge like Malaysia and Indonesia, some of us excel in other specialized abilities,
we have not entered into commerce with each other, let alone tariffs and laws that
separate markets from each other. So, if we concentrate our energies on the four
essentials of scientific education, of women in to workplace and educate them and of
fighting the enemy within us-- extremism that prevents us from a prosperous future and
gives us a bad name today, and that destroys our lives and of connectivity, Islamic World
will not only be in touch with each other, and connected and reinforcing each other, it
will also automatically become a global force and perhaps the most powerful of the
global forces. We have among us businessmen, entrepreneurs of excellent abilities, we
just had in Afghanistan a few weeks ago, Prince Al-Talam is here today, I welcomed him,
he came to Afghanistan, he went to Central Asia, and he took the car and he went to the
streets of Kabul and he went to look at a hotel that I hope you liked (laughter), because I
want you to invest there, we have abilities, we have talents, we have courage.

Nothing will stop us, if we deliver on the four suggestions that I had and I find this forum
to be the right place to discuss all these issues and to come up with solutions, suggestions
for the much-needed, much-needed growth of the Islamic Word and for the role that it
must rightly play in the global market, which it has the right to, a power to and the energy
to.

Thank you

								
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