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Interfaith Programs

Geneva Declaration on Interreligious Cooperation

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We, the assembled leaders of the world’s religions and faith communities, united in the conviction that world peace is attainable, conscious of our responsibilities towards this goal, affirming the principles of the United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, determined to go beyond relationships of tolerance to embrace diversity and work to create a global family, hereby declare that religions and faiths can and should:
  1. Positively contribute to the furtherance of world peace, development, and human rights;
  2. Encourage the appreciation of human and spiritual values by all persons;
  3. Live and work together in the spirit of mutual respect, understanding, tolerance, harmony, and cooperation by first living the example;
  4. Collaborate with the United Nations, international organizations, governments, and civil society, through the good functioning of this inter-religious council, towards creating a better world;
  5. Include discussion and awareness of broader social issues in basic religious teachings;
  6. Work towards the completion of the Millennium Development Goals through concrete and specific actions;
  7. Promote respect and protection of the environment;
  8. Exert more effort in bringing peace in the troubled areas of the world;
  9. Condemn acts of violence, discrimination, and exploitation of others, committed in the name of religions and faiths;
  10. Establish multi-sectoral mechanisms to help ensure transparency and prevent extremism in religious affairs;
  11. Support education for youth emphasizing respect and appreciation of all creeds, faiths, and cultures;
  12. Encourage comprehensive teaching of world religions (by representatives of those religions), ethics, cultures, and human rights in both secular and non-secular schools at all levels and in collaboration with government educational agencies, in order to improve mutual understanding;
  13. Cooperate further in the defense of human rights, as provided for in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;
  14. Support good governance for our leaders, nations, and societies;
  15. Celebrate the 1st of September as the world “Interreligious Cooperation Day”;
  16. Promote further dialogue, understanding, and cooperation among followers of religions and the non-religious, to walk hand in hand towards peace; and
  17. Promulgate a Program of Action for the world’s religions and faiths to fulfill this Declaration.


Drafted in the United Nations Office in Geneva, on September 1, 2008.

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Geneva Declaration on Interreligious Cooperation
Program of Action
Draft (V.01)

In light of the Geneva Declaration on Interreligious Cooperation (GDIRC), the leaders and members of the world’s religions and faith communities are called on to undertake the following:

  1. To have the GDIRC translated into as many of the world’s languages and other means of communications as possible;
  2. To cooperate to widely disseminate the GDIRC, ensuring that all places and centers of worship are made aware and have copies of the Declaration;
  3. To introduce the GDIRC in the appropriate courses of all universities, colleges, seminaries, schools, and other venues of learning of religions and faith communities;
  4. Identify and carry out concrete and specific actions to realize the recommendations of the GDIRC; and
  5. Encourage religious and inter-religious centers, groups, or organizations around the world to work with the proposed interreligious council to create an international network and to integrate the objectives of the GDIRC in their program of activities, with the goal to have inter-religious centers throughout the world.

Read about the Geneva Conference on Interfaith Cooperation and the Protection of Human Rights and Dignity
See also Declaration adopted at Interfaith Youth Leaders Forum in Bergamo, Italy

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