Head of State Kassym-Jomart Tokayev addressed the participants of the First Conference of Bishops of Central Asia, the plenary session of which was held in the capital of Kazakhstan. The address was read by Maulen Ashimbayev, Speaker of the Senate.
The Head of State noted, that for 30 years of Independence Kazakhstan managed to build a unique model of interethnic and social consent, based on the principle of "unity in variety". The President of the country underlined, that Catholics, along with the other believers of our country, make a significant contribution to the formation of the image of modern Kazakhstan as a country, where great attention is paid to tolerance, mutual understanding, and representatives of different ethnic groups live in peace and harmony.
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev wished the Conference participants fruitful and successful work, emphasizing that the meeting is held in the year of celebration of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Kazakhstan and the Holy See. Over the years the two sides have built a strong partnership based on shared values and aspirations, such as the protection of human dignity, the promotion of religious pluralism, as well as the promotion of global solidarity.
It should be noted that the Head of State recently held video-conference talks with Pope Francis, during which the Pontiff confirmed his official visit to Kazakhstan, as well as participation in the VII Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions to be held in the capital of Kazakhstan in September this year.
In his speech, the Chairman of the Senate Maulen Ashimbayev noted that the second historic visit of another Pontiff Francis will be a unique event, confirming the status of Kazakhstan as a reliable platform for interreligious and inter-civilization dialogue.
"Kazakhstan and the Vatican have considerable potential for further cooperation. I am confident that bilateral relations will be further strengthened through various educational, cultural, social and humanitarian initiatives and projects," said Maulen Ashimbayev.
The Senate Speaker also invited all participants of this Conference to take an active part in the forthcoming work of the Congress
(Senate Press Service, Photo by E. Ukibayev)