A prominent Saudi cleric was honored on Tuesday for his contribution toward fighting anti-Semitism.
General Secretary of the Muslim World League, Sheikh Dr. Mohammed al-Issa became the first recipient of the prize awarded by the Combat Anti-Semitism Movement to Muslim leaders.
Speaking during the ceremony - titled “How Muslims and Jews Can Combat Anti-Semitism Together” - via video call from Saudi Arabia, al-Issa spoke of the need for unity to fight anti-Semitism and hatred around the world.
“Whereas Jews and Muslims lived centuries together, in these last decades we have sadly grown apart," al-Issa said during the ceremony.
"Now, we must rebuild the bridges of dialogue and the bonds of partnership between our communities. Since taking over the Muslim World League, it has been my mission to fight the forces of hatred and violence."
Al-Issa also voiced his objection to Holocaust denial, a myth perpetuated within extreme sectors of some Muslim societies.
“There are those who still try to falsify history, who claim the Holocaust, the most despicable crime in human history, is fiction," he said. "We stand against these liars, no matter who they are or where they come from. True Islam deems any attempt to deny or underplay the brutal horrors of the Holocaust as the ultimate insult to the dignity of all those who perished.”
Al-Issa is considered a modearte voice within the Saud Arabian leadership and the Muslim world. He has voiced many times his objections to extremism and Holocaust denial.
In January, he led a Muslim World League delegation on a historic visit to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp.