Help stop decline of rationality, Zardari asks US congressmen


ISLAMABAD – President Asif Ali Zardari told US congressmen on Thursday to play their role in urging the United Nations and the international community to work out plans to promote cultural and religious harmony in order to stop the decline of rationality and sanity.
In a meeting with a US congressional delegation led by House Armed Services Committee Member Rob Wittman at Aiwan-e-Sadr, the president once again condemned the burning of the Holy Quran by what he described as a “mentally sick person” in Florida. He said that the tendency for intolerance and disharmony were crossing national boundaries and religious divides and it was imperative that the world acted before it was too late.
Extremism was manifesting in various forms including violence and intolerance, he said, and disharmony was also increasing. The president said the values of tolerance and harmony were advocated by the civilised world and now that these values were generally in decline, it was important that the UN took note of the incident and did something about it with the consensus of the nations.
He said that the government and the people of Pakistan strongly condemned the desecration of the Holy Quran by a “fanatic” in Florida. The president termed the incident a serious setback to efforts intended to promote harmony. He said that he had asked parliament to pass a unanimous resolution against such an ugly and abhorrent act in its next meeting and the Foreign Office had also been asked to register a protest at all international forums.
The president said that no religion could permit such fanaticism, which in itself was “a reflection of sick mind”. President’s Spokesman Farhatullah Babar told reporters that Pak-US bilateral relations, the war against terrorism, drone attacks and Pakistan’s energy requirements were also discussed in the meeting.
The president said that there was an urgent need to review all actions that were counter-productive in the ongoing war and created mistrust, said Babar.