Declaration of the Supreme Muslim Council of the Muslim Denomination in the Republic of Bulgaria, adopted on a regular session in Sofia on 3rd of December, 2014

We, the members of the Supreme Muslim Council, directly elected by the representatives (delegates) of the Muslim community in the Republic of Bulgaria on the National Muslim Conference held in February 2011, acting as a central collective management body of the Muslim Denomination in the Republic of Bulgaria, referring to the right of religion as a basic, natural and democratic human right, granted by the Constitution of the Republic of Bulgaria, the Law on Denominations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations, the European Convention on human rights, driven by the sense of public responsibility, social justice and religious tolerance, making all necessary efforts for establishing the prestige of Bulgaria in front of Europe and the world, claiming to have deepest knowledge of the Islamic religion, declare the following:
We are very concerned by the fact that during the recent months certain institutions and mass media using some raids, organized in regions, settled by Muslims, systematically and purposefully misinterpret and change the meaning of basic postulates of the Islamic religion.
It is not acceptable the testification that “There is no god but Allah and Muhammad (pbuh) is the Messenger of Allah”, which is main marker of the religious identity, as well as the first from the five pillars of the Islamic religion, by which one enter into Islam, to be presented as a symbol of terrorist organization. The fact that extreme extremist organizations abuse with basic Islamic symbol do not give the right to infringe upon the religious feelings and rights of the Muslims.
We witness that certain people, who present themselves as specialists in Islam, political circles and media also use these symbols and create artificial tension between the religious communities and denominations in the country and provoke fear in the society.
At the same time the believers trying to defend their religion and to perform their basic religious duties are accused in extremism and in sympathizing with these terrorist organizations. The created in this way current situation highly worries the Muslims and undermines the basis of the traditional neighborly relations.
The Supreme Muslim Council, taking into consideration the intensive processes in an international aspect, calls to the civil society and the state institutions to cooperate for strengthening the tolerant relations between the citizens, belonging to different denominations.
We do believe that the development and the strengthening of the religious education and upbringing through the Qur’an courses, the subject “Religion” in the state and municipal schools, the secondary religious schools and the High Islamic Institute, and not the creation of hindrances will contribute for the adequate knowledge of the Islamic religion. We would like to remind that the building permit for campus of the High Islamic Institute is postponed already 15 years without a sound argument.
We call to the mass media in the implementation of their duty to realize their social responsibility when presenting the issues related to the Islamic religion and not to create unnecessary and groundless panic in the Bulgarian society. The function of the state institutions is to find and announce to what extent the existing in the social space doubts are justified and are there any clear and concrete proofs with regard to this.


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