International Shia News Agency

New French ambassador to Iran meets Grand Ayatollah Sistani’s representative

SAHAFAQNA- New French ambassador to Iran, Philippe Thiebaud met with representative of Grand Ayatollah Sistani, Hojatoleslam Seyyed Javad Shahrestani.

Expressing concern over unilateral US sanctions and the economic war against the Iranian people, new French ambassador to Iran in this meeting called for modifying the situation.

Citing the historical records of relations between Iranian and French nations and remembering France as a host of Imam Khomeini in Neauphle-le-Château, French ambassador called for a deeper relation between the cultural and academic community of the two countries by the cooperation of institutions such as the Al al-Bayt Institute and the offices of the grand Maraji.

He also invited Hojatoleslam Seyyed Javad Shahrastani to France for developing dialogue among nations through more serious and more practical communications.

Saying welcome to Mr. Thiebaud and congratulating him on his new job, Hojatoleslam Shahrestani explained the conditions of Muslim and Shia communities and expressed concern over Western media’s unrealistic statements about Muslims and Shias. He also called for developing communications and interactions to eliminate misunderstandings.

“Politicians, academics and religious scholars are the best personalities who can play an important role in creating better understanding of Islam and the West as well as in modifying Islamophobia, especially in the media and cyberspace, ” Hojatoleslam Seyyed Javad Shahrastani added.

Referring to burning the Holy Quran by a Christian pastor, he said as well the Shias and the Muslims don’t attribute the act of the Christian extremist to Christianity, the Christian and Western community should not link Islam and all Muslims to extremist groups such as ISIS.

“The scholars and the intellectuals of the societies should announce hate against extremism, and by waking up the nations, they should prevent extremism to spread like a virus”, Hojatoleslam Shahrastani told.

“Based on wisdom and the teachings of Imams who are the great religious and intellectual leaders of the humanity, it is necessary to focus on interacting and creating common ideas among all ethnicities and communities. We know to what extent human societies have been suffering from fruitless gaps and to what extent the spiritual and material damages are left by these gaps. So I always insist on dialogue among religions and nations”, he added, “the wisdom, the experience and the conscience say the only way to alleviate fruitless tensions is honest cultural dialogue and recognizing shared points and the differences.”

At the end of this meeting, the French ambassador to Tehran gave a book as a keepsake to Hojjatoleslam Seyyed Javad Shahrastani.

This text is originally published in Shafaqna Persian and is translated by Shafaqna English. 

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