Mrs. Shirin Ebadi, winner of the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize,
visited the Islamic Center of America. Mrs. Ebadi was
received and greeted by Imam Qazwini.
A reception was held in her honor, attended by 100 community
members. Imam Qazwini welcomed Mrs. Ebadi with delight and
honor, declaring, "Mrs. Ebadi is the first female Muslim to
win the Nobel Peace Prize, and hopefully not the last." He
went on to express the feeling of jubilation in
the Muslim world. Imam Qazwini stated that this should be
expected, explaining, "Islam is known to be progressive on
women's issues, preaching equality between men and women."
Mrs. Ebadi addressed the audience with her concern about the
religion of Islam being under attack. "If a Muslim violated
a law, he would be labeled by his faith, not his name.
Contrary to if a Christian committed the same violation, the
faith of Christianity would never be labeled."
Mrs. Ebadi's address was received with applause and
encouragement. Her final thoughts reiterated her concern for
the image of the religion of Islam. "My question to the
world is: why hold the religion responsible? Islam is not a
religion of violence and terror. Islam, Judaism, and
Christianity share the same roots and we should speak of our
commonalities, putting aside our differences."