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World Interfaith Harmony Week 2011

UN World Interfaith Harmony Week

The first week of February every year was designated World Interfaith Harmony Week by an October 20, 2010 resolution of the United Nations General Assembly at the initiative of King Abdullah II of Jordan. Its motto is "Love of God and Love of the Neighbor" / "Love of the Good and Love of the Neighbor." For a PowerPoint overview of UPF observances, click here.

The first World Interfaith Harmony Week, the first week of February 2011, was marked by a variety of types of observances organized by the Universal Peace Federation.

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Bridgetown, Barbados - The playing of the National Anthem of Barbados opened the January 22 Interfaith Rally at the headquarters of the Barbados National Peace Council on the theme of Interfaith Activism for Peace and Harmony. 

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Montreal, Canada - The World Interfaith Harmony Week was observed on January 26 in Montreal with readings from various faith traditions, a report by Sikhs advocating for religious rights for minorities, and a speech by a Ghanaian Lutheran minister about what his mother taught him about getting along with people from different cultures.

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Ottawa, Canada - In support of Interfaith Harmony Week the National Capital Peace Council of the Universal Peace Federation met on January 25 to hear the Chair of the Capital Region Interfaith Council, Father Jacques Kabangu, speak on “Social Sin: How All Believers Can Unite to Eradicate Institutional Evil.”

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Toronto, Canada - A World Interfaith Harmony Week celebration was organized by the Central District Chapter of UPF-Canada on January 29 in Toronto. A solemn ceremony promoting interfaith harmony was followed by a presentation by Rev. Earl Smith on human rights.

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Grand Bassam, Côte d'Ivoire - In the midst of turmoil following last November's presidential elections, UPF-Cote d'Ivoire held an interreligious rally at a mosque in the colonial capital Jan. 29, 2011.

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Yamoussoukro, Cote d'Ivoire - On January 22 the peace campaign in Côte d’Ivoire reached a second step in Yamoussoukro, the political capital of Côte d’Ivoire. It happened in a very delicate occasion, as the country is passing through a very serious crisis after the presidential elections on November 28, 2010.

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Munich, Germany - On the occasion of the World Interfaith Harmony Week that was proclaimed by the UN, the Universal Peace Federation-Munich organized an interreligious conference on February 1. The topic of the event was Living with the one God – Foundation for a Culture of Peace? / Who is God, Jahweh, Allah?

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Stuttgart, Germany - The UPF chapter in Stuttgart, Germany celebrated an interreligious event on February 5, which connected to the “UN World Interfaith Harmony Week.”

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New Delhi, India - In support of UN World Interfaith Harmony Week, UPF-India invited youth from many backgrounds to join in interfaith prayers for peace and a cleaning project on February 6. The program was chaired by Ambassador for Peace and Vice Principal of St. Stephen’s College of Delhi University, Rev. Clement Rajakumar. Approximately 30 youth leaders from different faiths attended the program.

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 Seoul, Korea - An International Leadership Conference in Seoul marked the first UN World Interfaith Harmony Week, emphasizing the responsibilities of religious and spiritual leaders to defuse long-standing tensions between different ethnic and minority groups.

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Jakarta, Indonesia - In support of the World Interfaith Harmony Week, UPF worked with The Wahid Institute, the Indonesian Conference for Religion and Peace, and the IPMI Business School to organize a conference on January 27 about “Building Bridges of Peace through Interfaith Leadership.”

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Daliet el Carmel, Israel - At a Jan. 26, 2011 meeting in Daliet el Carmel honoring Israelis working for interfaith understanding, an interfaith peace council in Israel was promoted.

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Tokyo, Japan - A commemorative event of the United Nations’ annual “World Interfaith Harmony Week” was hosted by UPF-Japan on January 29 in Tokyo as an opening program of an Ambassadors for Peace Council Meeting.

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Almaty, Kazakhstan - UPF held a small event dedicated to the celebration of the UN Interfaith Harmony Week on January 29 at the Peace Embassy in Almaty.

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Nairobi, Kenya - UPF International Chairman Rev. Hyung Jin Moon was welcomed to Nairobi by Ambassadors for Peace of different faiths on Feb. 27, 2011.

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Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - The World Interfaith Harmony Week proclaimed by the United Nations found deep resonance in the hearts of peace-loving Malaysians when a culturally diverse gathering observed an interfaith open house at the headquarters of UPF-Malaysia on February 19. The theme was "Love of God and Love of the Neighbor."

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Chisinau, Moldova - A round-table discussion on “Interfaith cooperation as the important instrument of establishing the culture of peace in Moldova” initiated by the Universal Peace Federation took place on February 2 in Kishinev.

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Kathmandu, Nepal - UPF-Nepal organized a World Interfaith Harmony Week event at the Peace Embassy in Kathmandu on February 5. Leaders of seven religious traditions offered their perspectives on interfaith harmony.

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Kondopoga, Russia - A Festival of Spiritual Music took place on February 4 supported by the municipal government of Kondopoga and the Consultative Council of Relations with National and Religious Associations. It was also an event in honor of the Interfaith Harmony Week proclaimed by the UN General Assembly.

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Moscow, Russia - A “Play Football Make Peace” youth tournament took place at the Moskvich Sports Palace on January 30 with teams representating different religions playing not only for prizes but also to build friendships across barriers of religion, culture, and nationality.

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Novosibirsk, Russia - A meeting on the theme of "Love of God and your neighbor as the foundation of world peace" took place in the center of Russia on February 6. The 40 participants included leaders and representatives of various NGOs, religions, traditions, and beliefs.

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Yekaterinburg, Russia - In the comfortable hall of the Writers’ House in Yekaterinburg, representatives of different religions and spiritual groups met on February 6. This time it was a joint prayer for peace and mutual understanding in support of the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week.

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