Main objectives of the Conference
As the international organization of the Parliaments of sovereign States, the IPU for many decades has been providing a unique and inclusive platform for parliamentarians of all nationalities, faiths and beliefs to work together addressing the major challenges confronting our world. The IPU has worked to build bridges of dialogue and understanding, and help forge conditions conducive to peace, democracy and sustainable development. More recently, in line with its new Strategy, the IPU has been seeking to incorporate a wider, evolving, systems-based view of the actors, interactions and dynamics that influence parliaments and parliamentarians.
The Parliamentary Conference on Interfaith Dialogue will take previous work on interfaith dialogue one step further, framing this dialogue as essential not only to peace and inclusion, but as part of a collective approach necessary for saving our planet.
The guardians of the rule of law
Parliaments are the guardians of the rule of law, human rights and justice in societies, through their key functions in law-making, budgeting, representation and oversight. There is a strong correlation between peace, justice and strong institutions, as reinforced by Sustainable Development Goal 16 (SDG 16), and parliaments stand at this nexus.
Religion and belief constitute an important dimension of the identity, values and decision-making processes of individuals and communities. They can influence how people participate in society, how they exercise their civic and political rights, and how they view their allegiance to the state. Religious institutions are often important service providers in the areas of education, social welfare and humanitarian aid. In some contexts, religion and belief are also reflected in political and other governance structures. They are an integral part of the social fabric of all societies – albeit in different ways
The Conference will provide an opportunity for political and religious leaders, international experts and organizations to share good practices and take stock of the various initiatives which aim, in a holistic manner, to address some of the major threats confronting the world.
The Conference will therefore aim to:
- Celebrate cultural and religious diversity in all its forms.
- Help combat all forms of discrimination, related intolerance, hatred, extremism and acts of violence against people on the basis of their ethnicity, skin colour, religion or belief.
- Promote the inherent dignity and human rights of all individuals, including through freedom of religion or belief, gender equality, youth empowerment, as well as the protection of national minorities and other vulnerable groups. Reaffirm and consolidate our common values and principles of peace, humanity, fraternity and cooperation between cultures, religions and nations.
- Emphasize education and science as an important foundation for peace and as a means to combat the various forms of intolerance.
- Encourage genuine and effective dialogue and cooperation between political and religious leaders and other actors, with a view to translating shared values and principles of mutual respect and acceptance of differences into national policies and religious teachings.
For more information, please visit the IPU Concept note document :