Saudi Arabia welcomes election of Hissein Brahim Taha as Secretary-General of OIC

Saudi Arabia's FM Prince Faisal bin Farhan and Hussein Ibrahim Taha at the 47th session of the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers, in Niger on November 28, 2020. (@FaisalbinFarhan)
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Updated 28 November 2020

Saudi Arabia welcomes election of Hissein Brahim Taha as Secretary-General of OIC

  • Former Chadian FM will take over the post from current Secretary-General in November 2021
  • Prince Faisal wished Taha success, said the “Kingdom will spare no effort to support” him

LONDON: Saudi Arabia welcomed the election of Hissein Brahim Taha as Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Saturday.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia welcomes the nomination of Mr. Taha, fulfilling the Kingdom’s previous commitment toward the African Group, and acting according to the organization’s charter regarding the choice of Secretary-General reflecting fair geographic representation, circulation and equal opportunities among member countries,” Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said in a statement.
“The Kingdom offers full support to the new Secretary-General stemming from its active role in serving Islamic causes around the world,” the minister added.

Prince Faisal also wished the former Chadian minister of foreign affairs success in his duties and said the “Kingdom will spare no effort to support” Taha during his tenure which will start in November 2021.   
The Kingdom's foreign minister thanked current Secretary-General Youssef Al-Othaimeen for his great efforts as head of the OIC. 

Lake Tiberias reveals mosque built by Prophet companions

Updated 12 min 28 sec ago

Lake Tiberias reveals mosque built by Prophet companions

  • Religious site ‘could have been built by commander of Muslim army,’ expert says

LONDON: One of the world’s oldest mosques has been uncovered by a team of archaeologists on the shores of Israel’s Sea of Galilee.

The remains of the mosque were found beneath the ruins of a building originally identified as from the Byzantine period. It might have been constructed as early as A.D. 635 by a companion of the Prophet Muhammad who was a commander of the Muslim armies that conquered the Levant in the seventh century.

The mosque is located on the outskirts of the city of Tiberias in Israel’s north, which overlooks the western shore of the Sea of Galilee. The discovery was announced last week in an academic conference after 11 years of excavation by a team led by Katia Cytryn-Silverman of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The site was previously excavated in the 1950s when a colonnaded structure was found and identified as a marketplace from the late Byzantine period. However, later excavations revealed pottery shards and coins from the early Islamic period. Together with the multilevel structure of the building’s foundations, archaeologists have pointed to the site having Islamic origins.

Archaeologists had earlier identified the remains of an eighth-century mosque, but further digs revealed that the structure was in fact a century older.

Historians already know the location of older mosques, but they lie hidden beneath existing mosques where archaeologists cannot access them. The oldest known remains of a mosque were uncovered east of Baghdad in the ancient city of Wasit, and have been dated to A.D. 703.

However, the Israeli archaeologist team believes that the mosque uncovered in Tiberias was built decades earlier, and perhaps founded by Shurahbil ibn Hasana, a commander of the army that conquered the area.

“We can’t say for certain that this was Shurahbil’s,” said Dr. Cytryn-Silverman.

“But we do have historic sources that say he established a mosque in Tiberias when he conquered it in 635.”