ISLAMABAD - Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal on Tuesday said that self-styled Islamic State or Daesh was not a product of seminaries as educated youth from modern universities were part of it to fight in Syria and other countries.

He further said that educated youth from the US and Europe were fighting in Syria.

Addressing the ceremony organised to launch a study report “Role of madaris in Pakistan and Afghanistan”, the minister said that madaris were part and parcel of Islamic civilisation and produced great scientists in the past.

The ceremony was organised by the Centre for Research and Security Studies, which was also addressed by the National Security Adviser Lt General (retired) Nasser Khan Janjua and ambassador of Denmark.

The interior minister said that the role of madaris had changed since 1979 when these were used to fight communism.

“The US universities made the children of Afghan refugees as terrorists to use them against the then Soviet Union,” he said.

After the end of the war, Europe and the US themselves won appreciations but we were left alone to deal with the problems of terrorism and extremism that were the results of this war, the interior minister added.

He held the US and Europe responsible for the problems Pakistan is facing today and added that it was their responsibility to cooperate with Pakistan, Iqbal said.

The minister also said that the creation of Taliban was not a religious but a political matter.

“After the Taliban al-Qaeda surfaced and now Daesh has come into existence,” he added.

The interior minister said injustice, prejudices and discrimination against anyone were the root causes of extremism and fundamentalism.

He said that the US and Europe were biased towards the Muslim world and were not serious in resolving their issues.

He urged that the world should resolve the issues of Kashmir, Palestine and Myanmar on the pattern of East Timor and South Sudan.

Iqbal called for resolving the larger political issues of the region, and collective efforts to root out causes of radicalisation and extremism.

For peace in the region there is a need to keep in mind it could not be attained without resolving larger political issues, he said, asking the US to help Pakistan in this connection.

“However, pointing the fingers will not help address the issue but complicate matters. The Western world will have to fulfil its responsibility and have to show the same kind of concerns for the Muslims of Kashmir, Palestine and Myanmar, which they demonstrated for East Timor and South Sudan,” he added.

National Security Adviser Nasser Khan Janjua said Madaris reforms had almost been completed and currently the government was engaged in the process to give them a legal shape.

“Wafaqul Madaris has agreed that the seminaries will follow the same syllabus, which is being taught in schools and colleges,” he added. 

Janjua said that there were 38,000 madaris in the country where 3.5 million children were getting education but the government was reluctant to spend on them.

Every year, 4.6 million children are being added to the population of the country and there was need to generate resources for them, he added.