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Image: Ali Kadri Facebook page

Towards harmony: advocate to speak at World Peace Day event

Geoff Helisma|

Ali Kadri has just completed a three-year term as a member of the Queensland Government’s inaugural Multicultural Queensland Advisory Council; he also had a role in the SBS TV show, The Mosque Next Door, – this Saturday, World Peace Day, he will speak at Grafton Headspace.

The event is being facilitated by Grafton-based LOETUS (Languages Other than English Together with Us), which “aims to provide an independent platform for residents from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in the Clarence Valley to participate in the planning, co-ordination and delivery of policy, programs, projects and services”.

At the age of 21, Mr Kadri, a Sunni Muslim from India, came to Australia and studied at university in Brisbane.

Mr Kadri outlined his reasons for coming to Australia in a 2016 Sydney Morning Herald story: “My father sent me to Australia after the 2002 Gujarat riots.

“The mob violence between Hindus and Muslims in the city of Ahmedabad, in the west of India, had been going for months and he wanted me to be safe until things settled down.

“My father was a lawyer and believed the best way forward for Indian Muslims was to gain an education.”

During the riots, Mr Kadri said he had witnessed the “brutal killing” of his cousin and “a group of 16 Muslim kids [being] murdered”.

“I watched a police officer shoot a boy in the hands and knees and then leave him alive,” he said in the SMH story.

Mr Kadri’s ‘mission’ is to campaign against “Islamophobia, extremism and bigotry, and make Australia a safe and truly multicultural nation”, says the SBS website.

LOETUS’s chair, Rathi Ramanathan, said she contacted Mr Kadri following the massacre in Christchurch on March 15.

“I was aware of his work and reached out to him,” she said.

Mr Kadri, who is the spokesperson for the Islamic Council of Queensland, is scheduled to speak from 11am to 1pm at Headspace, 59 Duke Street, on Saturday September 21.

Light refreshments will be provided; reservations to attend can be made at eventbrite.com (search for World Peace Day event Grafton) – entry is free.

People are welcome, however, to turn up on the day.

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