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International Religious Liberty Conference in Spain

International Religious Liberty Conference in Spain

The Conference was entitled: ‘Freedom, Religion and Security’

May 20, 2016 | Bern, Switzerland. | Noticias Adventistas, CD-EUDNEWS.

On May 13, 2016, personalities and experts met in a meeting Hall of the Faculty of Law of the University in Madrid, with the presence of the Minister of Justice, Rafael Catala and the Deputy Secretary General of the UN, Adama Dieng.

In the opening ceremony, the Deputy General Director for Relations with Religions of Spain, Jaime Rossell, argued that “religion, peace and security should not be in conflict". Furthermore, these issues should be studied in universities.

The panels focused on topics such as ‘religion as a resource for conflict prevention’; ‘terrorism in the name of religion’; ‘abuse of states on religions and religious minorities’; ‘the role of education in protecting against violence’.

"The issues to be discussed are of great importance and we need to invite more international organizations to the academy in order that students can gain a better knowledge about Religious Liberty and Freedom of Conscience”, said Rossell.

The spanish Ambassador for Interreligious Dialogue of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Belen Alfaro, stressed that Spain is "really committed to improving the interreligious dialogue".

"It is a priority for us," stated Alfaro. Then, he listed all the efforts Spain has made as co-founder of the International Center for Interreligious Dialogue KAICIID.

The Deputy Secretary General of the United Nations and special adviser on the prevention of genocide, Adama Dieng, was invited to talk about "nonviolence" in a context in which, as reported, many "atrocious crimes" are perpetrated "in the name of God."

Dieng argued that "peace is a religious concept" and that for many people in different parts of the world "religion is a motivating factor."

Kishan Manocha, ODIHR Senior Adviser on Freedom of Religion and Belief, affirmed that we must ensure religious freedom because it is "a vital principle" .

During the working sessions, participants discussed about why religions are used for violence and tried to find out how religious leaders can cooperate with international academics and political leaders to develop a culture of peace, harmony and religious freedom, while maintaining security.

The event was oranized by the Secretary General of the International Association for Religious Freedom (AIDLR) and Ambassador of the Inter-European Adventist Church at the United Nations, DR. Liviu Olteanu.

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