ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal has said that Islam is a religion of peace and harmony, which gives a lesson to respect and accept the rights of others and there is no space for terrorism and extremism in Islam. Addressing an event at the President House on Tuesday to mark the Message of Pakistan – a document by clerics of all schools of thought condemning terrorism and suicide bombings – Ahsan Iqbal said, “Those who have sacrificed their lives fighting terrorism deserve our gratitude. After the industrial revolution, the education revolution is knocking at our doors.” He said that the dream of a united Pakistan had not been achieved despite the passage of 70 years. He said that there is no dispute that Islam is a religion of peace, adding that in Islam punishment is only awarded by the state. Terrorism has no place in Islam, he asserted. President Mamnoon Hussain, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, Jamiat-e-Ulema-Islam-F (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Higher Education Commission (HEC) Chairman Dr Mukhtar Ahmed attended the ceremony, along with other clerics. Pakistan is committed to ensuring that its land is not used to launch terror attacks against any other state, the foreign minister said earlier. In his address, President Mamnoon Hussain hile urged the need to focus on different forms of extremism present in the society. The president said that if differences were created among people they stop respecting each other’s opinion. He remarked that country was facing countless challenges despite government fulfilling all its duties. “We should stand united and not repeat our mistakes,” he adde. On Monday, details emerged of a decree (Islamic ruling) signed by over 1,800 religious clerics from different schools of thought. The ruling states that those who commit suicide attacks, order such attacks, are all considered rebels against the true spirit of Islam. The ruling further states that the state has the right to act against such people. Published in Daily Times, January 17th 2018.