YAOUNDE, CAMEROON: March 19, 2009. Pope Benedict XVI stressed the common values shared by Christianity and Islam at a meeting with leading members of Cameroon's Muslim community Thursday.
Cameroon "shelters thousands of Christians and Muslims who often live, work and carry out their religious devotions in the same neighbourhood," said the pope in a text distributed to journalists.
They all believed in a single God and shared "fundamental values" such as the family, social responsibility, obedience to God and care for the weak, he added.
"Genuine religion thus widens the horizon of human understanding," and "rejects all forms of violence and totalitarianism, not only on principles of faith, but also on right reason," said Benedict, who is making his first visit to Africa as pope.
In a September 2006 speech at Ratisbonne in Germany, the pope provoked outrage among sections of the Muslim community for appearing to question the rational basis of Islam and associating it with violence. AFP