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Religion, Peace and Security: a Global Summit in Geneva

Religion, Peace and Security: a Global Summit in Geneva

The purpose was to promote peaceful and inclusive societies by fostering religious freedom and preventing violent extremism and atrocity crimes.

November 25, 2016 | Bern, Switzerland. | C. Cozzi, CD-EUDNews.

The AIDLR (Association Internationale pour la Défense de la Liberté Religieuse) has accomplished 70 years of service, this year. The Association was established in 1946 thanks to interest in religious freedom expressed by two key voices. The first was that of Jean Nussbaum, a visionary physician, who knew by experience the meaning of segregation and harassment due to personal conviction and religion. The second influential voice belonged to Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, also deeply engaged in promoting and defending human rights.

This Association was created for the purpose of disseminating ideas of tolerance, and to defend the right for anyone to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to believe or not, freedom to change one’s religion or beliefs, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest one’s religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.

All the presidents and secretary generals who succeeded each other in the 70 years, worked tirelessly to realize these objectives.

For this occasion, the celebration of the 70th anniversary, AIDLR organized a Global Summit on Religions, Peace and Security, held from November 23 to 25, 2016. The purpose was to promote peaceful and inclusive societies by fostering religious freedom and preventing violent extremism and atrocity crimes.

All the speakers (approximately 50) expressed their sensitivity and professional commitment to the promotion of the defense for human rights, bringing attention to the unconditional respect that is owed to expression of one’s personal faith.

Appeals to the entire community, and particularly to the institutions concerned, were put forth several times, focusing especially on politicians, academics, and diplomats; this was in order sensitizing public opinion in respect to religious liberty on all fronts.

The Global Summit, held in Geneva, at the Palace of the Nations, ONU, was organized in cooperation with the United Nations - Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect. It also involved the cooperation of the Foreign Office of the Spanish Government.

For this occasion, the 70th anniversary of the AIDLR, a ceremony for the International Awards of Excellence “Ambassadors for Liberty and Peace – Jean Naussbaum and Eleanor Roosevelt” was organized to identify some key “Ambassadors of Peace”, recognized for their interests and commitment in favour of the defense of religious liberty.

Words of appreciation for the organisation of this Summit were expressed towards Liviu Olteanu, Secretary General of AIDLR. Through his foresight, he contributed to the round-table meeting of different eminences of the United Nations, diplomats, politicians, and academics. The goal of this meeting was to promote the continuation of a much-needed dialogue, creating a chorus of agreement to succeed in achieving the hoped-for results.

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