Today marks the beginning of the annual World Interfaith Harmony week, proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly to promote harmony between all people regardless of their faith.
In the resolution A/RES/65/5 adopted on 20 October 2010, the UN General Assembly established the first week of February every year as the world interfaith harmony week, acknowledging that mutual understanding and interreligious dialogue constitute important dimensions of a culture of peace.
On this occasion the Office of RTCYPP – The Religious Track of the Cyprus Peace Process under the Auspices of the Embassy of Sweden- reiterates its strong commitment to continue to work with and accompany the joint efforts of the five religious leaders of Cyprus and the different faith communities in the island for mutual respect, coexistence and harmony.
The aim of the World Interfaith Harmony Week is to provide a focal point from which all people of goodwill can recognize that the common values they hold far outweigh the differences they have, and thus provide a strong dosage of peace and harmony to their communities. Among others, the resolution recognizes the imperative need for dialogue among different faiths and religions to enhance mutual understanding, harmony and cooperation among people. The UN General Assembly encourages all States to support, on a voluntary basis, the spread of the message of interfaith harmony and goodwill in the world’s churches, mosques, synagogues, temples and other places of worship.
Since 2009, the Office of RTCYPP encourages, facilitates and serves the religious leaders’ dialogue and their joint efforts for human rights, peace and reconciliation. Through their dialogue, the religious leaders of Cyprus are making important breakthroughs for religious freedom and human rights in Cyprus fostering cross-community communication and cooperation contributing constructively to the Cyprus peace process.