The Role of Religious Leaders in Achieving Sustainable Development of the World Discussed at the N. Nazarbayev Center


The N. Nazarbayev Center for the Development of Interfaith and Inter-civilization Dialogue has launched a series of thematic conferences of international level, dedicated to the 30th anniversary of Independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Today, the first at this year international online conference on the theme: "The role of religious leaders in achieving sustainable development of peace" was held within the framework of the current discussion platform "PeaceTalks".

The event was attended by representatives of state bodies and religious associations of Kazakhstan, members of the Secretariat of the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, leading foreign experts and authoritative speakers from international organizations of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Arab Republic of Egypt, Vatican, India, Great Britain, Russian Federation, Uzbekistan and the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Opening the online conference, Vice Minister of Information and Social Development of the Republic of Kazakhstan Marat Azilkhanov introduced to the participants the new Chairman of the Board of the N.Nazarbayev Center for the Development of Interfaith and Inter-civilization Dialogue - Bulat Sergazievich Sarsenbayev.

In his speech, the vice minister outlined that an important condition for peace and harmony is the unification of positive efforts of religious leaders, their real interaction with each other and support in constructive actions.

In turn, the Chairman of the Board Bulat Sarsenbayev noted that today we have the opportunity to share the vision of different problems, concerning the global development prospects and construction of architecture of safe and harmonious coexistence of civilizations of our planet. "The challenges of our time require the creation of a new paradigm of security and development. It should be based on the principles of cooperation, mutual respect, tolerance and mutual understanding. The Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, being a unique platform, has proven to be an effective platform for promoting the dialogue between the representatives of religious leaders. Now it is important for these ideals and principles to be shared everywhere", - underlined the moderator.

In the welcoming speech the vice-minister of the information and social development of Kazakhstan Marat Azilkhanov marked the indisputable contribution of purposeful policy of Elbasy Nursultan Nazarbayev in creation of model of peaceful co-existence and mutual respect of cultures and religious values during the years of Independence of the country.

The exceptional role of the Republic of Kazakhstan in the promotion of inter-religious and intercultural dialogue in the world was emphasized by the international speakers at the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. Thus, Khaled Akashe, the Head of Bureau on Islam Affairs of the Papal Council and Mohammad Mahdi Taskhiri, the Chairman of the International center of interreligious dialogue of the Islamic Republic of Iran, agreed that the realities of the modern globalizing world cause a great need for words and actions not only from religious leaders, but also from heads of the states. Kazakhstan shows the whole world community a vivid example of the national consensus and consolidation of society, effectively promoting its accumulated experience in maintaining interethnic and interfaith harmony throughout the world.

Continuing the discussion on key issues, the experts touched upon the importance of the international initiatives of the countries in the development of a global dialogue of world and traditional religions. Chairman of the Russian-Arab Center for Research and Information Majed Abdulaziz Al Turki and representative of the Anglican Church of Dorking Jo Bailey Wells called upon the participants to contribute fully to the world community's efforts to achieve long-term stability and prevent violent incidents caused by hatred and intolerance.

Despite the consequences of the pandemic, speakers expressed the view that countries must assist in strengthening interreligious relations and make their fundamental and practical contribution to the promotion of spiritual values. In this respect, Rudraksha Sakrikar, Representative of the Hindu organization "Somaya Vidyavihar", drew attention of the conference participants to the fact that right now, the consolidation and further development of interfaith dialogue in the world is the main mission of religious leaders.

As a result of the international online conference, the participants agreed to further fruitful cooperation on the issues of strengthening interfaith dialogue and the development of appropriate practical recommendations within the framework of the discussion platform "PeaceTalks".