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Islamic & Buddhist Perspectives "Destructive Frenzy in Afghanistan"
March 2, 2001

Egyptian Muslim intellectual Fahmi Howeidy: "Islam respects other cultures even if they include rituals that are against Islamic law."

Senior Egyptian Islamic leader mufti Sheikh Nasr Farid Wassel: [The pre-Islamic statues] "are only a transcription of history and have no negative impact on the faith of Muslims."

Iran News: "Islam has never preached the destruction of objects that embody the belief and history of millions of people throughout the world."

Phra Wipatsri Dhamaramo, secretary to Thailand's chief Monk: "As Buddhists we are not allowed to criticize anyone, but good religious people should not destroy world heritage."

Kotatsu Fujita, Hokkaido University's professor emeritus of Buddhism: "Even though the statues are in Afghanistan, they are really world heritage sites now. I strongly doubt the Taliban's understandings of cultural heritage."

Kijo Nishimura, All Japan Buddhist Association Secretary-General: [The destruction] "must be avoided as much as possible under any circumstances. Once you destroy something, you can never get it back. We have an important responsibility to leave these statues to our descendants."


© 2001 by the Archaeological Institute of America