For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
June 27, 2007
Fact Sheet: Strengthening Our Friendship with the Muslim Community Worldwide
President Bush Announces He Will Appoint A Special Envoy To The Organization Of The Islamic Conference
President Bush Rededicates Islamic Center of Washington
Today, President Bush Participated In The Rededication Of The Islamic
Center Of Washington, In Washington, D.C.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower attended the Dedication Ceremony of the
Islamic Center of Washington on June 28, 1957, to demonstrate America's
respect for the Islamic faith. To underscore this respect for Muslims
everywhere, President Bush visited the Islamic Center of Washington six
days after the 9/11 attacks to denounce any prejudice against
The President Announced He Will Appoint A Special Envoy To The Organization
Of The Islamic Conference (OIC). The OIC is an inter-governmental
organization that strengthens political, economic, social, cultural, and
scientific cooperation among its 57 member states.
The President's Announcement Reaffirms The United States Government's
Outreach To Muslim Communities Based On Mutual Respect And Understanding.
This is the first time in history that a president has made such an
appointment to the OIC.
The Special Envoy Will Represent America's Views And Values And Work To
Demonstrate To The Wider Islamic World Our Interest In Respectful Dialogue
And Continued Friendship. The Envoy will maintain formal contact with the OIC Secretariat, the Secretary General, the chairing country, plus other
member countries, to follow OIC affairs and activities, understand the
views of OIC members and leaders, seek ways for the U.S. and the OIC to
cooperate, and seek to promote U.S. views on important policy matters that
may come before the OIC.
Today, We Have An Opportunity To Help The Forces Of Moderation Win The
Great Struggle Against Extremism. In the Middle East, we have seen the
rise of a group of extremists who seek to use religion as a path to power
and a means of domination.
Extremists Falsely Claim That America Is At War With The Muslim People And
The Muslim Faith, When In Fact It Is These Radicals Who Are Islam's True
Enemy. They have staged spectacular attacks on Muslim holy sites to divide Muslims and make them fight one another, and they have killed more Muslims than they have killed people of any other faith.
The President Has Committed His Administration To Helping People Fight Off
Terrorism And Find Their Own Paths To Prosperity And Peace. The efforts
underway in Afghanistan and Iraq are central to this struggle, but the
struggle will not end there. The stirrings of a democratic future have
already been seen in other parts of the Middle East, though they may take
time to be realized.
Men And Women Of Conscience Have A Duty To Speak Out And Condemn The
Murderous Movement Of Extremists - And In This Effort, Moderate Muslim
Leaders Have The Most Powerful And Influential Voice. America admires and
thanks those Muslims who have denounced what the OIC Secretary General
called "radical fringe elements who pretend that they act in the name of
Islam," and we must encourage more Muslim leaders to add their voices.
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