Interfaith Peacebuilding

Rapid Response

Religions for Peace USA responds to recent pressing issues and events that call for an interfaith response.

Religions for Peace USA Moderator Offers Condolences for Those in Garissa, Kenya

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

On behalf of Religions for Peace USA family, we continue to mourn with the families of the nearly 150 students, mostly Christians, who were brutally murdered in Garissa, Kenya by the terrorist group Shabab in the early morning hours of April 2nd.

The Kenyan people have been traumatized by Shabab before, when in 2013 the terrorist group stormed a mall and killed 67 people. As a religious leader, I am especially saddened by unjust attacked against Kenyan’s Christian population. These brutal murders demonstrate that Shabab shows no respect for any religion. As has been proclaimed regarding other terrorist cells across the world – acts of these have no founding in any religion.

Personally, as a Muslim, I am profoundly troubled by these attacks on my Christian brothers and sisters in Kenya. These acts and the terrorists group Shabab represent no aspect of Islam. As the moderator of the most broadly representative U.S. interfaith organization, I stand with my sisters and brothers of all religions in the U.S. and abroad.

We continue to denounce acts such as those carried out by Shabab. Our work to build understanding and relationships of trust between people of races, cultures and religions has never been needed more than our moment. But we also need to offer our prayerful support for those most impacted by this tragedy. The spiritual tools and power our religious traditions can offer heal the political wounds of our world.

As we in the United States are again confronted with the pain and agony caused by the unjust loss of life of Walter Scott an unarmed African American man, we recognize that we are not only dealing with understanding and relationships between people of different races or religions. We are dealing with the challenge of creating communities and cultures that are welcoming to all, regardless of racial or religious difference. This is the challenge of our current time, and as we build community and understanding we prayerfully offer our support.

In Faith,

Mr. Naeem Baig
Moderator, Religions for Peace USA