On May 24, 2023, at the Sapienza University of Rome, one of the oldest universities in the world and prestigious universities in Italy, a round table was held on the results of the VII Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, which was held in September last year in the capital of Kazakhstan. The event was attended by representatives of the clergy of Italy, members of the teaching staff of Sapienza University, culturologists, religious scholars, journalists, graduate students, university students, etc.
Within the framework of the round table, organized by the Islamic religious community COREIS and Sapienza University, the declaration adopted following the results of the VII Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions was considered. The participants of the event expressed their views on the role of the forum of leaders of world religions in ensuring interreligious and interfaith dialogue.
In particular, the Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Italy Yerbolat Sembayev noted that the consolidation of civil society played a big role in the formation of an independent Kazakhstan and gaining international recognition for it. Interethnic harmony, religious tolerance and the unity of the people has become the key to the successful development of our country.
The Ambassador emphasized that Kazakhstan adheres to the policy of preserving and strengthening interethnic harmony, respecting the right to freedom of religion. An important confirmation of this is the international initiative of our country to convene the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions.
“Kazakhstan seeks to ensure a dialogue between the leaders of world and traditional religions, built on the basis of trust and mutual understanding. The calling of the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions is to open up broad prospects for international cooperation in this area and help overcome such negative manifestations as violence, religious extremism and terrorism,” the Kazakhstani diplomat emphasized.
During the event, the appeal of the Minister for Universities and Research of Italy, Anna Maria Bernini, to the participants of the round table was read out, in which she noted that the declaration of the VII Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions contains concepts that reveal the value of religions as agents of social change, namely, building a society in which priority is given to peaceful coexistence. According to the Minister, today's event provides an opportunity to discuss the role and functions of various religions - Judaism, Islam, Christianity, which play an important role in geopolitics, the unification of states and can become tools for dialogue and cooperation.
Professors of Sapienza University U. Gentiloni and A. Sagioro, President of the Islamic Community of Italy A. Bakr Moretta, Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Community of Rome R. Di Segni, Rector of the Pontifical Urban College “de Propaganda Fide” also shared their views on the results of the VII Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions. A. Nunez, vice-president of the Islamic religious community COREIS Imam Y. Pallavicini, representative of the Bruno Kessler Foundation I. Valenzi, graduate student of the Sapienza University B. Fraioli and others.
In particular, Professor U. Gentiloni noted that the peculiarity of today's seminar is that it combines education, religion and diplomacy, which contributes to dialogue between people and the establishment of relations between them.
According to the President of the Islamic Community of Italy A. Bakr Moretta, the Congress serves as an important platform for dialogue between various religious leaders.
In turn, the vice-president of the Islamic religious community COREIS Imam Y. Pallavicini spoke about his participation in the VII Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions in Astana in September last year. He noted that Kazakhstan was the first state after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks to organize such a Congress, thus bringing together at the same table the leaders of almost all the major religions of the world.
Bulat Sarsenbayev, Chairman of the Board of the N. Nazarbayev Center for Development of Interfaith and Inter-Civilization Dialogue, made a speech especially for the round table in the format of a video message, noting that the experience gained over 20 years of holding the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions is very valuable and instructive.
“The Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions has become a significant contribution of Kazakhstan to the global process of interreligious and interfaith dialogue and has taken a special place in the efforts of the world community to strengthen the principles of consent and tolerance, mutual understanding and cooperation. It was a great honor for Kazakhstan to bring together the most authoritative spiritual leaders of the world and establish a dialogue with the Head of the Vatican and the Catholic Church, Pope Francis, the Supreme Imam of Al-Azhar University Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb, representatives of the Russian Orthodox Church, Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi of Israel David Lau, Chief Sephardic Rabbi of Israel Yitzhak Joseph and all participants of the forum. The President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev is convinced that the authority of spiritual leaders will help overcome the contradictions of the modern world for the sake of the well-being of all mankind” B. Sarsenbayev emphasized.
In addition, he said that this year it is planned to hold the XXI anniversary Session of the Secretariat of the Congress of the Leaders of World and Traditional Religions under the leadership of Maulen Ashimbaev, Chairman of the Senate of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
In general, the participants of the round table, positively evaluating the initiative of Kazakhstan, noted the importance of promoting interfaith and intercivilizational dialogue at the international level.