K.H. Yahya Cholil Staquf, the general chairman of the Nahdlatul Ulama Board (PBNU) known as Gus Yahya, visited UIII to deliver a public lecture and, more importantly, maintain the relationship with the UIII community. Delivering a lecture about “R20 Bali Communique and Challenges of Religions Ahead”, he specifically emphasized why there should not be Political weaponization of Islam and identity politics on behalf of Islam and NU, in particular. Identity politics and political weaponization can harm and divide society by pitting individuals and groups against each other based on their identity rather than unifying them around common goals and values. Such tactics often lead to increased hostility, distrust, and division, making it more difficult to find common ground and work together to address social and political issues.

Closing his speech while also responding to the questions given, he higlighted that to mitigate unprecedented crises between religions, sustaining interfaith harmony is essential because it promotes mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation between people of different religious beliefs. In an increasingly diverse and interconnected world, interfaith harmony is crucial for building a peaceful and harmonious society. When people of different religious backgrounds come together, they have the opportunity to learn about each other’s beliefs and practices, which can help to dispel misconceptions and break down barriers of prejudice and intolerance. This leads to a more inclusive and accepting society where everyone is valued and respected.