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Country: Malaysia Religious affiliation: Islam

Professor at the Department of Shariah and Law, Academy of Islamic Studies of University Malaya

Dr. Raihanah Abdullah is a Professor at the Department of Shariah and Law, Academy of Islamic Studies of University Malaya. From 2011 to 2013, she was the Director of the Centre for Civilizational Dialogue (CCD) at the University Malaya. It was during this time that her passion for building peaceful and harmonious co-existence in the world intensified. She organized several events related to intercultural dialogue such as the 2013 “Forum & Exhibition on Youth Interfaith Dialogue: A Youth Discussion on Peace and Harmony” and the 2012 “International Symposium on Intercivilisational Dialogue towards Peace, Harmonious Co-existence and Sustainability”. These international symposiums highlighted several aspects of Intercivilisational Dialogue according to the Islamic worldview and the Lotus Sutra.

Currently, she is the Deputy Vice Chairperson of the Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). She believes that acceptance and respect amongst the diverse cultures and faiths is imperative to achieve a harmonious world. She emphasizes that in order to achieve this acceptance and respect, humans need to bridge the world through dialogue.

As an expert in the areas of related to the human rights of marginalized groups of society, particularly of women, she has published widely on these topics both in English and Bahasa Malaysia. Dr. Raihanah lives by the motto of “Be gracious in speech, kind words echo to eternity” as she continues to engage in spreading awareness and acceptance of peaceful coexistence through intercultural dialogue. Her current research focuses on the role of women and youth in building peaceful and harmonious coexistence.