The World Council of Churches (WCC) General Secretary, the Rev Dr Olav Fykse Tveit has expressed great “regret” about the making of the film “The Innocence of Muslims”. He called the film an “an insult to the heart of the Muslim faith” and “to all peoples of faith.”
The film, apparently made in the USA and offensive to the Islamic faith, has spurred demonstrations and some violent reactions.
In a statement issued on 14 September, Tveit urged non-violence, respect for religions and for Christians and Muslims to “stand together in condemning such insults.”
Tveit said that “the film was produced and distributed by particular individuals who are not in any way representative of the attitudes of any mainstream religious group, nor indeed of particular countries or governments.”
Affirming the WCC’s continuing commitment to the dialogue with the Muslim partners, Tveit said that “we have confirmed our commitment to work together with our Muslim partners for justice and peace. So we believe that it is tragic if the reactions provoked by this film were in turn to lead to negative stereotyping of Muslims.”
He added: “It is vitally important that the relevant authorities ensure that such potentially vulnerable groups are protected and do not become the target of violence by misguided individuals reacting to the actions of those far away."