Malaysian sultans call for religious tolerance, unity

  • Malaysia’s royals have made a rare intervention into public affairs, calling for unity and religious harmony after what they described as “excessive actions” in the name of Islam.
  • Members of minorities have expressed concern in recent months about what they see as intolerance in Malaysia, which is 60% Muslim, with sizeable Buddhist, Christian and Hindu communities。
  • In a statement issued on 10 Oct 17, the nine sultans who serve as hereditary titular heads of individual Malaysian states said people must respect the constitutional principle that Malaysia is a multi-ethnic and multi-confessional country.
  • “It is feared that the excessive actions of certain individuals of late can undermine the harmonious relations among the people of various races and religions. The Rulers feel that the issue of harmony has deep implication if any action is associated with and undertaken in the name of Islam,” said the statement signed by the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal Syed Danial Syed Ahmad.
  • The comments, which come ahead of a gathering of the Conference of Rulers starting on 11 Oct 17, are unusual as the sultans largely assume a ceremonial role and rarely speak on the functioning of the state or society.

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