The Congress of leaders of World and Traditional Religious - stages of development

On February 13, 2003, at the International Conference of Peace and Harmony, which played an important role in bringing religion, cultures and civilizations closer together, the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions was initiated in Kazakhstan.
Representative Image (Image Credit: ANI)
Representative Image (Image Credit: ANI)
The world recognition of success and confidence in new initiatives of Kazakhstan is evidenced by the fact that the heads of the United States, Russia, France, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Poland, Germany, heads of large international organizations sent their greetings to the Congress. 
The I Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, held in September 2003, was a unique event: for the first time, representatives of the entire religious world gathered at one table. 
The significance of the first Congress lay in its conceptual idea - the dialogue of religions is an effective tool for resolving disputes and countering terror. 
The purpose of the first congress was to find common reference points in the world to create a permanent international institution and ensure religious dialogue and coordinated decision-making. 
The 1st Congress ended with the adoption of a declaration in which spiritual leaders made statements on joint actions to ensure harmony and stability in societies as the basis for a harmonious world in the future. 
In addition, the decision was made to hold an interreligious forum on a regular basis - once every three years - and to create a permanent body of international and interfaith dialogue - the Secretariat of the Congress. 
Thus, Congress received the potential of a working dialogue platform for solving systemic problems.
The II Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions in September 2006, whose work was carried out in two directions: "Freedom of Religion and Respect for Followers of Other Religions" and "The Role of Religious Leaders in Strengthening International Security", was held in a new building built specifically for this event - at the Palace of Peace and Reconciliation.
From the very first day of the Congress, the document  was adopted, containing the main components that guided the participants in their work. 
In addition, a final document was adopted recognizing the role of religion in the modern world, which is aimed at strengthening the role and mission of the leaders of world and traditional religions in establishing a global order. 
The participants of the II Congress also adopted a joint declaration calling on representatives of all religions and ethnic groups to prevent conflicts based on cultural and religious differences.
In the center of discussion of the III Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, held in July 2009, was the topic , where certain changes were made to the format of the congress. Breakout sessions became innovations at this Congress. 
At the end of the event, a final joint document was adopted, calling on the world community to constantly support and promote the efforts of religious leaders and organizations to establish a fruitful interreligious dialogue, to help maintain a dialogue of religions and civilizations. 
The outcome of the congress was the proposal to create a Council of Religious Leaders to ensure dialogue and cooperation with other international organizations, whose work is aimed at the dialogue of cultures and economic cooperation. 
In turn, the IV Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions "Peace and harmony as the choice of mankind" was held in May 2012, which emphasized the important role of religious leaders in strengthening the security of mankind, improving dialogue and mutual understanding. 
One of the most important initiatives of the IV Congress was the creation of an Internet resource within the framework of a single electronic portal G-Global, dedicated to the formation and strengthening of global tolerance and trust. 
"Dialogue of religious leaders and politicians for the sake of peace and development" was the theme of the V Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions in June 2015. 
One of the principles of the declaration, formulated by the participants of the V Congress, was based on the call of the parties to military conflicts to stop clashes and, through negotiations, develop agreements on ending violence and protecting civilians. 
In October 2018, expressing unanimous agreement and focusing on the main theme of the VI Congress "Religious Leaders for a Safe World", the participants discussed the rapprochement of cultures and civilizations, spoke about global security and measures to combat extremism and terrorism. 
The results of the VI Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions have shown that it is necessary to reach a new level of interaction. 
The Declaration of the participants of the Congress emphasized that all spiritual leaders need to appeal to the world community, people, states with an appeal for peace and security. 
For the joint implementation of the voiced initiatives, the delegates of the VI Congress put forward a proposal to establish N Nazarbayev Center for Development of Interfaith and Intercivilization dialogue. 
In 2021, at the XIX meeting of the Secretariat of the Congress, the topic of the upcoming VII meeting of the Congress was determined: "The role of leaders of world and traditional faiths in the socio-spiritual development of mankind in the post-pandemic period", and the date was approved September 14-15, 2022 in Nur-Sultan.

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