An international conference on the promotion of religious tolerance, jointly organized by the OSCE Project Coordinator's Office in Baku, the Azerbaijani Government, the Caucasian Muslims Office and the Azerbaijani National Commission for UNESCO has today kicked off in Baku, SIA reports.
Delivering a keynote speech at the event, OSCE Project Coordinator in Baku Ambassador Alexis Chahtahtinsky stressed that Azerbaijan will be discussed as an example of tolerance during the conference.
“This is the first event of the OSCE, held in a new status in Azerbaijan. Referring to the history of France, he underlined the importance of religious tolerance.” the ambassador said.
“The anti-Semitism has never existed in Azerbaijan and this would be better occurred in other world countries. Azerbaijan can play an exemplary role in this regard. Sometimes, religion is used for political purposes. Violence, Islamophobia, Christianophobia must be avoided. The problem remains vital around the world as well as in OSCE area. Today we see the rise of Islamophobia in the world. There is a confrontation between Sunnis and Shiites. Slogans like "Kill the Jews" are also chanted in some places of the world. Such cases are not allowed. It is not easy to get out of such a situation, but we can do something together to prevent terrorism, religious radicalism, we must act together in this regard. The spread of these ideas in the society is very important and young people play an essential role in solving these problems. Religion should not be a source of division and discrimination. Tolerance assumes in the meaning of mutual respect, children should be taught that religion serves peace at schools in order to prevent its serving radicalism. Discussing Azerbaijan’s experience, we want to set an example for the world. Mr. President proposed to establish a Multiculturalism Center, we should work together with this center,” he said.
After that, State Counselor of the Republic of Azerbaijan for Multiculturalism, Interethnic and Religious Affairs, Kamal Abdullayev read out Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's message to the participants. The president congratulated the participants on the International Day for Tolerance. The head of state noted that Azerbaijan’s becoming a space of religious tolerance is one of the priorities of the country's policy.